The Power of a Plan- 5 tips to stay organized and calm this Holiday Season
I haven't always been the most organized person. I'm still working on this in a lot of ways. But over the years, I have developed some structures that really help me stay organized. I am like a computer hard drive with a finite memory capacity. If there is too much in there, I simply shut down and start forgetting details.
It is essential that we free up 'headspace' in order to feel a sense of calm.
When you are disorganized on a regular day, you can feel overwhelmed. Load the extra 'to do's and obligations of the holidays and you're spinning like a top. So, I am sharing some things I do on a regular basis as well as some of the structures I have created for the Holidays to keep me sane.
1. Google Keep. It's free and it keeps all my lists in one place. I can also share them with my husband so he can add things in real time. It can be a lifesaver when you're at the grocery store and your partner thinks of one more thing you need.
2. Invite your partner to your 'events' on your online calendar. When we have meetings, appointments, or commitments that fall outside of our daily work schedule, we invite the other person so that it is in both our calendars. That way, I know if he will be home late, or he knows if he has to pick up one of our kids instead of me. I know it sounds crazy but sometimes our lives are pretty hectic and it can sometimes be difficult to remember to communicate these details on a daily basis.
3. Reverse engineer your holiday. Get out a calendar (paper is best for this one). You can use this one if you like and work backwards. Add the holidays you celebrate (Last year, I even took note of other holidays we don't normally celebrate so I could talk to my kids about them), family commitments and the stuff that is really important to you. Now, you can work backwards and figure out when things need to be done by in order to feel less stressed out. For example, you begin to see clearly when shopping needs to be done or gifts need to be shipped.
4. Get a wall calendar. It can be so helpful for the whole family to see what's going on. Kids love adding to it and you can see the whole family at a glance. Don't get fancy. A large piece of paper will do. Anything that the whole family can see. There are lots of great family calendars out there.
5. Just wait. When someone extends and invitation to you wait. Don't respond right away. I have developed the habit of saying, "Thanks so much for the invite, I will check my calendar and get back to you!" This gives me time to decide if its really something I want to do. Sometimes, the trick to staying organized is keeping the list of things to do as small as possible!
If you do one thing, reverse engineer that holiday!
This will give you the bird's eye view of what needs to get done. You will also have the opportunity to schedule in what's really important.
If you know you need time for yourself during the holidays to stay sane, book it in. Make sure everyone knows you are unavailable and make it happen!
If you want to feel more organized and balanced this holiday, we will help you discover more ways to do just that in The Happy Holiday Sisterhood. In this online program we will support one another in courageously creating simple and meaningful holiday habits and traditions. Email me firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or we can set up a time to chat!
Wishing you peace and calm,