It’s back-to-school time and I can hear the cheers of parents everywhere cheering!
Listen, we LOVE our kids, right? Right!? We really do but it’s nice to go to the bathroom alone, sitting quietly for 20 uninterrupted minutes is completely underrated, and it’s one less meal a day that I’ve got to prepare for 6 people.
But this “vacation” from littles for a few hours doesn’t mean I’m sitting on my back porch soaking in the last few weeks of the summer sun. No, for me, it means a return to a more normal work schedule.
And just like my kids and school, I always have an adjustment period. But over the years, I’ve developed a personal checklist that helps make this transition way easier and makes jumping back into my own routine much more effective!
So today I’m sharing my 5 steps for weekly success. Guaranteed to help you make the most of your time, streamline your schedule, and still have time for #selfcare.
1) Block Out Time For Top Priorities
The first thing I have to do before I do anything else is making a list. It’s not in order, it isn’t organized. It’s simply a list of things, events, obligations, emails, phone calls, meetings, and appointments that require my attention. Once I’ve done these, I separate them into two lists: Urgent and Important. Many things come up during the week that seem ‘urgent’ when in reality, they’re time-thieves that prevent me from getting the ‘important’ stuff done. Once I’ve got my lists, I list the Important items I prioritize them and block out time. That way, I’m able to sprinkle smaller to-dos in around the biggest and most important tasks or to-dos.
SHOP ALL OF MY WEST ELM HOUSE PURCHASES
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This takes some practice, but will absolutely change your life and how you utilize your time! This is me on a typical Sunday afternoon:
2) Set Monday AM Agenda
Mondays are always the busiest day – well, Monday and Tuesday.
It’s fair to say that every day is pretty busy but if I don’t make the most of Monday and Tuesday, the rest of my week falls apart. Actually, ‘implodes’ would be a more accurate term. And I find that it doesn’t just help my week get off to a good start. Starting my Mondays right also helps my family do the same. I find if I schedule and execute a timeline and tasks, my kids get off to school on time, no one is rushed, and we’ve all set up ourselves for a really successful week.
I always get up just a bit earlier on Mondays as well. Not necessary but it works for me!
3) Schedule Workouts
This really could be any form of #selfcare that you like to indulge in. But for me, this means working out. Whether your goals are weight loss, toning, or just an excuse to get out of the house or jumpstart your day, self-care is super important. Had I known what my own journey would look like or do for my mental and physical health, I would have started years ago. I didn’t lose a ton of weight or even change clothing sizes, but I don’t want to take a nap at 3 pm every day. My body doesn’t hurt. I don’t wake up with aches and pains. My fingers don’t swell so bad or as often as they used to. I feel less puffy (arthritis people will totally understand this one). And I haven’t had a migraine in months! This alone is enough to get me into the gym every chance I get.
The small things are what has made the biggest impact. Not only is my body stronger than ever before, but I’ve grown stronger mentally, as well as spiritually. How? By learning a new discipline, committing to something hard, keeping my mind sharp and focused, and finding peace within myself when some days I felt “less than”.
So schedule your self-care. Whether it’s working out, meditating, yoga, writing – whatever. Just get it scheduled!
SHOP MY SHOES
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4) Stock Your Fridge
This might seem like a funny thing to be one of my 5 steps but let me explain.
You hear a lot about meal prep and it seems like everyone is doing it. But most times, just having healthy food in the house saves so much time, bad moods, temper tantrums, weight gain (haha), and makes dinnertime a breeze. It removes the temptation of stopping for fries and a soda (most days), and keeps all of our brains clear and working at their best. I don’t know about you, but I feel a little bit of brain fog every time I eat junky. Stocking our fridge with healthy snacks is the ultimate way to prevent this. It helps keep my energy levels up and my focus in check.
You may want to go a step further and put together a few meals or easy-to-grab snacks. Braun and I have meal prepped on and off over the years and it does save a ton of time! It’s also a really fun activity to do with your significant other!
You can talk over slicing veggies, discuss your week, reconnect with each other and discuss your week ahead!
5) Make Your Bed
Take it from a Navy SEAL – making your bed is the tip of the iceberg for dealing with challenges in life. If you want to change the world … start off by making your bed. “Nothing can replace the strength and comfort of one’s faith, but sometimes the simple act of making your bed can give you the lift you need to start your day and provide you the satisfaction to end it right.”
BEDDING | FUR BLANKET | PILLOWS | PLATFORM BED | NIGHTSTANDS
To make this my own, my rule became “Make Your Bed & Get Ready For The Day.” These two things jumpstart my day, allow me to cross 2 things off my list first thing in the morning, and help me fight the temptation to crawl back to bed after I get the kids off or have a break in my day. You may be thinking that it’s a bit excessive to get ready every.single.day, but in reality, it helps make me feel better. It’s a great pick-me-up and I can honestly say I FEEL better when I do it.
READ BRAUN’S BOOK PICKS
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If you’re new to making your bed, Admiral William H. McRaven goes on to say that these 9 things, in addition to making your bed, are little things that can change your life…and possibly the world:
- Start your day with a task completed
- You can’t go at it alone
- Only the size of your heart matters
- Life’s not fair—drive on!
- Failure can make you stronger
- You must dare greatly
- Stand up to the bullies
- Rise to the occasion
- Give people hope
- Never, ever quit!
Make Your Bed is a book that imparts simple wisdom, practical advice, and words of encouragement that will inspire you to achieve more, even if you’re having a tough go of it.
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I wouldn’t be overstating it if I said that these 5 small things have transformed my life. By doing these things, I’m able to get more done, say “no” to the wrong things and “yes” to the right ones. I spend less time on the “urgent” and more on the “important.” My time is accounted for and meaningful. I don’t waste a lot of time. It makes those times when I do indulge, even that much more amazing! Ultimately, it’s about prioritizing ME so that I can prioritize others and my work.
I hope this was helpful! If you’ve got tips for how you take on the week tell me below!