While I am always trying to figure out ways to live my best life, I do have some systems already in place to keep things together. One of the things that keeps me organized is Google Calendars. Do you use it? I just counted 11 different calendars on my Google calendar. It literally keeps my life together. I do write things out, like for to do lists, but having electronic calendars that can also send me reminders trumps paper calendars for me. My paper calendar also has never emailed me a reminder or shared itself with family and friends! I like that you can access it from anywhere, so I never have to worry if I lose the list or wait until I get home to check the calendar.
I do so many things with my calendars, but here are the ones I primarily use:
– Menu plan: I “schedule” meals for each day of the week ahead of time so I always know what is planned for dinner. In the calendar invite, I include a link to the recipe I plan to use if I’m using one in the “where” section of the appointment. That way, when I’m ready to make it, I can just click the google calendar invite to get to the link.
– Travel planning: I use this google calendar for two reasons – work travel and personal travel. It gets well used for work travel. I share this one with my husband so he always knows when he’s on his own for handling the girls (which means picking them up from school and handling dinner time which I would normally do). My husband also uses this so that I know when he has a work event so I can plan to NOT be traveling that day. We also use this to keep track of when we’re planning to go out of town for a weekend or longer vacation.
– Personal appointment calendar: All the basics – doctors appointments, dinner or outings with friends, blog meetings with Becca, activities for the girls, etc. In advance of a season (or just after one ends when it’s fresh in my mind), I also tentatively schedule activities I know I will want to do. For example, I have apple picking on the calendar in the Fall and several holiday activities for December (cookie baking, seeing Christmas lights, shopping for Angel Tree, etc.) already planned. I sometimes schedule reminders for myself to buy gifts in advance of a birthday or occasion on this calendar as well. The more automatic things are, the easier it is for me to keep things all together!
– Family calendar: This is a shared google calendar with my immediate family. We keep track of birthdays and travel so we know where each other are (though I have to admit that we have been slacking on that for awhile).
– Workout calendar: As all the experts say, you should schedule your workouts. I try to plan a week in advance for my workouts so I know I will actually do it. It really does make it ALOT more likely that I’ll complete a workout if I have it all scheduled in. This also makes it easier for me to invite others along on whatever activity I have planned. I’m much more likely to have a workout partner when I plan it in advance!
Finally, another feature I love about Google Calendars is the ability to color code each calendar. Every calendar has a different color which makes it easy to keep track of each one. Also, it’s just prettier that way!
Hope this is helpful if you’re looking for other ways to stay organized. Anything I’m missing? I’d love to hear how you keep things together!