Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Planning Ahead & Setting Goals: Time Management Series

Good morning!  

I hope you are having a productive month and working towards your goals!  I unknowingly had a couple days last week with no TV and didn't end up realizing it till I was going to bed.  I also didn't end up tracking my No TV Day like I thought I would but I know I was pretty busy those days!  I hope you were able to see the advantages of cutting back on your time with the tube also.  You can read last week's Time Management post here.

This week is all about planning ahead and setting goals.  A lot of us probably have at least 10 goals we can think of off the top of our head.  Many of them may be related to your health and fitness, some related to your family and I am sure you have some for your day to day life like staying on top of the laundry.

For the last couple of years I have been using an Erin Condren Life Planner and it is my brain.

I write everything down in my planner from what is going on that day, my workout and anything funny Sarah and Katherine said or did.  It is my daily planner but it is also my daily journal because I jot down so many notes about our day.  It is something that never gets put away and I always have a pencil attached to it.  I use a pencil because plans change and I want to be able to erase and move things around easily.  I chose the Erin Condren Life Planner because I love the weekly layout and I was able to put our family picture as the cover.

On the side of each new week is a column with the title Goals, love that.  As many of you know I am a big fan of Chalene and her philosophies on goals and fitness.

Chalene stresses how important it is to actually write down your goals and not have them just floating around your brain.  By writing them down they become real and become a daily reminder of what you are working towards.  Since my planner has a column just for that at the beginning of every week it is a reminder to not only keep up with my goals but also to be setting new ones.  Certain goals can take years to accomplish but there are many things you can do everyday that will help you get there.  At the beginning of each week and before I go to bed I take a look over my planner and see what is still ahead.  I plan out my runs and cross training for the week along with rest days, if we have yummy bucket at preschool, play dates, Katie lunches, errands, Jesse's travel, blog and column ideas, etc.  You can tell we have an extremely stressful life, it is a hard life but someone has to do it.

Long-term goals are: 
- Write blog posts that contain less fluff and more meaty material
- Have my monthly columns written a week ahead of the due date and spend the final week on editing
- Start sending article ideas to magazines and newspapers
Short-term goals: 
- Get caught up on the 1st 6 months of 2013 in our family album
- Finish all of the books I've started
- Sign the girls up for summer swim lessons

Writing down your goals will be your first step towards achieving them.  By planning ahead and having a structure for your days you'll be much more successful in those goals.  I am a pen and paper girl but if are more comfortable using technology I am sure there are a ton of apps and calendars for your phone.  I urge you to find something to help you get organized and help you keep track of everything you have going on day to day.  Sometimes I'll start to feel overwhelmed by everything and I need to take a minute to process it all.  When I do sit and write it all down a lot of times I realize it isn't as much as I had thought and I actually feel better.

Your mission this week is to find a way to start organizing your days and write down your goals.  I think the Dollar Store even sells little planners and calendars you can use.  It doesn't need to be anything exciting or fancy, just something to help get you on track.

*I buy this planner every year with my own cash-ola, Erin Condren has no idea I even exist**

Do you think using a planner/calendar is something you would do?  

Are you already using a planner to keep you on track?  

How do you think it is working for you?



  1. I'm relieved to know I'm not alone in the "finish all of the books I've started" category!
    I'm working on short/long term goals too. Great post and information!

    1. Thank you! Ya the book thing is out of control

  2. I keep all my info on my phone, which syncs to my computer, so even if I don't have my mobile, but have access to a pc with net, I can access everything.
    For me, if I don't have it written down, I will forget, so I have to put it in my diary regardless.
    I have a system that works for me, but if something better comes along then year I'm happy to try it out.

    1. I have to write everything down too. I have my planner that I write everything in and then I have a dry erase calendar I write the big stuff in so Jess can have an idea of what is happening too. I've always loved calendars and all that, the syllabus was always my favorite part about college!

  3. I use a daily planner (though it ends up being mostly for appointments and meetings). I use my blog and a journal for other notes/goals/books I want to read/etc. I use lists day to day, and the family uses a whiteboard to keep up with what we are all doing throughout the week. The planner you use looks interesting... I might have to check that out!!

  4. If you'd like a tool for setting your goals, you can use this web application:


    You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, and a calendar.
    Syncs with Evernote and Google Calendar, and also comes with mobile version, and Android and iPhone apps.

  5. I definitely use a planner everyday, though your goals are loftier than mine. I have things on there like "cook dinner." :)


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