My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan

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My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan

Was I always a little flaky? I don’t know. For years, I could get away with being very loosy-goosy with my planning because I was a stay-at-home mom of preschoolers. We moved all the time too, so by the time people developed expectations of me, we were off and away to the next town.

Over the years, I have slipped into a routine of planning as little as I can get away with planning. I’ll procrastinate decisions until they are made for me. Yep. Guilty of that. Sometimes I get this fear of commitment. If I sign up for things, I’m going to have to figure out how to actually accomplish those things with toddlers in tow.

And I never knew when my husband would be here or not be here, so making plans felt like shooting darts– real darts–in a room full of people, blindfolded.

No thanks.

So friends, that is how I became the version of April you have today.

April, are you going to the yada yada yada meeting?

**Total deer in the headlights**

Ummmm. Uhhhhhh.  Umm, yeah, you know, I might…

(Inside my head I’m thinking……IF all 4 kids are well, IF Alan is in town, IF I have energy left that day…..IF I am not supposed to actually be at Dan’s tee-ball game or some Army function that I can’t remember the exact dates for…..If, If, If…..)

My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan

I love to rock me some babies. Go away, world, until I finish this.

 

Actually, for the past 11 years those were all perfectly good reasons to be flaky, indecisive, unprepared, uncommitted, and unsure. Did I shut the world out a little bit? Yes, yes, I definitely did.

In fact, I had to google the word “twerking” not too long ago. I’m so out of touch with pop culture, and I kept hearing that word. All I can say to that one is ew, girl! Ew. Somebody get that poor girl a sweater and some capri pants.

But things keep popping up on our calendars, and I’ve re-entered the world of work with my blog. I actually HAVE to FORCE myself to plan and be less free-spirited, more grown-up like.

You people who have a plan amaze me, and I mean that in a good way. You totally have my respect.

You know when you are going on vacation. You’ve actually committed to specific dates, and you probably even know how you are gong to pay for that.

You have a budget.

You know when people’s birthdays are, and you plan for that accordingly.

You keep some sort of planner or calendar.

 My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan
About that….Y’all! I have purchased TWO different “planners” this year. They are both mostly blank. I have a calendar hanging in my kitchen too, which makes 3 planners, really. All I’ve written on that one is what the kids are doing for lunch and when their dentist appointments are.

I even downloaded an editorial calendar plug-in to try and start planning my blog posts. (It’s actually extremely helpful, fellow bloggers, check it out. It’s called “editorial calendar.”)

Only I’m so anti-structured in my thinking, I can rarely bring myself to write about what I’m ‘scheduled’ to write about.

I also have 2 different e-books I’ve written half of, and now they are just sitting on my hard-drive taking up space. My hard drive is so full, my computer has actually stopped letting me download or upload new things.

And suddenly I find myself wanting to change.

See, I bought all those planners. That’s the first step. I WANT to do the right thing and be all responsible again. I always was one-half responsible and one-half not at all, even back in high school and college. I used to make myself plans and stick to them, sort of. Well, I used to make plans. Maybe I never did really stick to them. I almost always turn in everything on time, actually, but I live in fear of signing up for extra things.

So I decided to pray about this today.

And this was my answer:  If you can plan out each day by making a list and crossing things off, then you can apply that same strategy to weeks. Then apply it to months. Then do that for years. Do it at the start of each week, each month, and each year, just like you are doing now for days.

Huh. Brilliant. Maybe even doable?

My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan

My planning tends to never go past the day that I’m on. This is the typical extent of my planning.

 

What I do now for each day is this. After I have safely delivered all of my children to school, I come home and have a little time for Bible study and prayer. You have to pour inspiration in to yourself if you expect to pour any out, right?

I close with prayer, and I ask God to help me make my to-do list for that day. I write the list out on the wipe-off board in the kitchen. Then I mentally prioritize the things that HAVE to get done.

That’s why I usually cook supper in the morning, by 12:00, because I know everyone HAS to eat, and I don’t want that task hanging over my head. Also, I have no energy left at 5:00pm.

I see no reason why this method for planning each day could not be applied to my weeks, months, and years, with one of the 3 planners I’ve purchased laying open on my lap.

My Brilliant Plan for How to Plan

And don’t even say that I should use my phone as my planner. I can’t do it. This falls under scatter-brained people problems. The minute I open my phone to use the calendar or some other useful, productive app, I immediately forget what I was doing and end up reading Instagram or my email or something.

So watch out, world! I now have a plan for how to plan!!!! Who knows? Maybe next week I will make a budget, a meal plan, or catch up on my 2,809 emails…….nahhhhh…

Please share your best planning tips in the comment section! We would love to hear more ideas! Thanks, y’all!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Time Deprived

my precious littles

Tonight the main thing my brain is stuck on is this:  Why can’t there be more hours in the day?

I want to do it all. Every single thing. I want to wake up early and stay up late. I want to read my Bible before the day hits me in the face. I want to homeschool, have a neat and tidy house, and maintain a blog successfully–all at once. I want to stop and smell the roses. What roses? I keep forgetting to notice…

JD woke me up twice last night, for no obvious reason, so I was April-on-the-verge-of-total-melt-down today.

Tomorrow’s Friday, ya’ll! So at least there’s that!

I read this blog post about “Lazy Homeschooling”. I was like “Whaaa?” It was a very well written article where the author proclaimed that her children can teach themselves, and she is free to write and enjoy life.  I guess I’m living in an alternate universe from the one that she is enjoying. My children have to be watched constantly. Caleb needs to be taught how to read. Daniel is ALWAYS in my lap, and if he’s not, then he is in another room locking the door, which by the way, can only be unlocked from the inside of the room.

Do you know how many bobby pins I’ve gone through this week, thanks to Dan’s new hobby?

If I leave the older two at their desks for very long, I return to some sort of Karate Kid reenactment, not kids spontaneously building a model of the solar system.

So I can’t help it. I NEED the schedule. They need the rules and the behavior chart. I NEED the curriculums. Maybe when I’m more experienced I will be able to chill more. Man, I hope so.

I always said I would never never ever want to be a mom with four kids + a full time job. Sorry, working moms, but that looks way too stressful to me. I want to live to be old. I’m not one of these that thrives on the work stress.  Now I’m a teacher. I’m up late grading papers, blogging, and making lesson plans, rocking babies, and promising Caleb that there is no such thing as MothMan.

Moth Man? Let me just say: Do not borrow the book United Tweets of America from the library, where your kids will spot Moth Man on the West Virginia page. Then you might, very stupidly, agree to find out what a Moth Man is, then let your boys watch a History Channel special on him….

I am paying for this mistake. I don’t know if Caleb will ever be able to go to sleep tonight.

I’ve been reading in Proverbs this week. I’m still doing the read through the Bible in a year thing. I’m a bit concerned. This is September, and Proverbs does not appear to be but halfway through……oh well. We’ll call my plan the read your Bible through in a year and a half plan.

“But those who plan what is good find love and faithfulness.”  Proverbs 14:22

“All hard work brings a profit.”  Proverbs 14:23

“Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty, but from the strength of an ox comes an abundant harvest.” Proverbs 14:4  Thank you for that one, http://fullmanger.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/lets-get-started/

“An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.”  Proverbs 13:25

Lord, help me to be kind, and please grant me rest. 🙂 I hope you all get some rest too!!!

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