Today I am sharing with you a busy mom’s guide to using her planner. To be honest, I didn’t realize that so many busy mom’s were not utilizing their planners. It wasn’t until I started getting questions from some of my friends about how to use a planner that I realized not everyone knows how to use one. In addition to many mom’s unsure of how to use their planner, many mom’s are so busy they forget!
Often times as busy moms the day can get away from us; and before you know it the day is over and we feel as if we got nothing done. I would be lost without my Erin Condren Life Planner, and as a busy mom I rely on this planner to help keep me organized and on top of my to-do list. Whether you bought a new planner in January (and still haven’t cracked it open yet), or you’re feeling overwhelmed by using a planner at all, here are some practical tips to help you begin.
A Busy Mom’s Guide to Using Her Planner
Step 1: Find your planner.
There is no one size fits all planner for busy moms. Depending on your budget and your needs, you need to find a planner that is a good fit for you. I love using the Erin Condren Life Planner because it meets all of my needs, and it makes organizing fun. You can also check out this free weekly household planner too. You want to make sure whatever planner you choose, it will be a great fit for you. If you don’t think you need a planner, check out my post on why every mom needs a planner.
Step 2: Get everything in one place.
One of the perks to using a planner is that everything you need will be all in one place. As wonderful as being able to schedule activities in our planner once a month would be, you already knew this wasn’t going to be the be all end all of planning. Whenever a date or piece of paper enters your home or is given to you, put it in your planner right then and there. This will help make sure you don’t forget it, and ensure you get it on the schedule.
Step 3: Schedule as you go.
One thing I’ve learned is the vital importance of disciplining yourself to write down important events immediately after you schedule them. If you schedule a dentist appointment, be sure to write it on both the monthly overview and daily section of your planner.
In case you are unable to write something down immediately, it is a good idea to sit down once a week to gather up all of your “save the dates”, flyers, invites, and other reminders that you have put in your planner but haven’t written in yet. By gathering everything in one place to write it down, you’ll stay organized and make sure you aren’t missing anything.
Step 4: Put everything in your planner.
Each planner is different, however you want to make your planner your home base. When you open your planner, you should find everything from your meal plan, to your shopping list, to your to-do list. If your planner is missing something you need, make sure to add post it notes or other tools to keep all the things you need in your planner. You’ll save time by having everything in one place, and stay organized.
Step 5: Use your planner.
Everything we have talked about up until this point won’t do you any good if you don’t use your planner. No matter how well you’ve organized it, or what cute accessories you got to go with your planner you still have to use it. Make it a habit to check your planner at least once a day until it becomes a habit. It may take some time if you’re not used to using it, but it will become extremely helpful. You may consider setting a reminder on your phone to check your planner.
Step 6: Give yourself grace.
Never forget that life cannot be scripted. While having a plan is the key to any successful life – realizing that the plan won’t always play out the way you wrote it down is important too. Goal setting is a wonderful way to accomplish the things we need to get done, but grace is also in order. So remember just because you are unable to check something off of your list doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Nope. It just means that there were other things that took priority and you can move it to another day.
I believe that a planner is essential to a busy mom’s life. A planner can be used for a multitude of tasks to help us keep our busy days in check. As long as you follow the tips above, you’ll be well on your way to mastering your planner in no time. Busy mom’s are unstoppable – especially those with a plan to execute!
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