Planning Chaos!

I’m planner…..I’ll admit it…hello my name is Katherine and I’m a planner. I love my diary and like to feel organised! In fact it really disturbs my mojo if I dont have plan. That may sound strange but, in my defence, for many years I had to plan everything months ahead due to on-call rotas and competing work schedules. Now I have two jobs and two kids planning has become all the more important.

 

Planning the business is so exciting! January is such a great month to set goals and put those action plans into place. We were truly blessed last year with all the support we had as a new business (THANK YOU so much xx) and 2018 is going to be just as  exciting. We have lots of plans in place and we cant wait to share them with you. Events are here so take a look and join us on Facebook (here) to keep up to date with everything.

Planning for the business and scheduling everything to do with the business is so straightforward, structured, simple ….I LOVE IT!!! Whether it be scheduling orders or marketing or admin or appointments etc….I LOVE IT!!! NO DRAMA!!

 

Planning for home and the kids……well that’s another story! Their schedule, after school activities, sorting childcare, school events (those planned ones and those surprise ones) ….lets face its more complicated, unpredictable and in all honesty at times CHAOS!

Anyone have this experience……you just feel like you’ve the week sorted and then the school texts….ooo just a reminder you’re invited to school on Friday afternoon or oh btw its dress up like a bear day tomorrow (oh yeah cos I’ve got one of those just waiting to be worn!!)……..I could go on lol!

 

Now I have used diaries all my life….dabbling briefly in using the calendar on my phone (nope! that just doesn’t work for me) and other organisation apps (again not one seemed to fit!)….but now i use planners. Currently I have two….greedy me! One I pop in everything that needs doing ….home…. business…. events…. housework….. school stuff….. parties (kids not mine lol…they have a much better social life than me) …..literally EVERYTHING! The other planner I sit down on a Sunday and schedule it all into the week. Then I look at it and ask myself some questions

 

What appointments do I have?

What orders need doing?

Have I the balance right this week?

Have I everything I need for the week?

How is my time divided?

Does everything fit with my purpose and my goals?

Do the things I have in my diary make us happy?

 

I’ve been doing this for a while now and here’s what I’ve noticed about my home life……perhaps it will resonant with you?

Time with the kids is so limited in the week! I found myself picking them up, feeding them, and before you knew it bed-time was here and I was sitting down to do work! Also with two kids and being on your own, you rarely get time with one or the other. So last year I created time. One went in school club and the other had that rare one-to-one time with mummy where we did whatever they wanted (within reason lol). My eldests choice – hot chocolate, snuggle on sofa watching ‘You’ve Been Framed’…..my youngest’s choice – milkshake at Sainsbury’s cafe with a bit of cake. The boys love having undivided attention from mum rather than having to share it and this time has become NON-NEGOTIABLE and ESSENTIAL!

 

I hadn’t any real ‘me time’. When the kids weren’t with me or they went to bed I worked! Late last year that most definitely wasn’t working for me anymore and it became imperative that I started to plan in ‘me time’….not to do work but time to do things that I enjoyed and needed …..a coffee and catch up with a friend…..get some sleep……exercise……go to a yoga class…. have a bath in peace without any interruption …..watching that box-set I always meant too quietly under a duvet in my pjs with a glass of wine (anyone else enjoy this?!)…..maybe go ‘out out’!!! I encourage everyone to put time in to do whatever it is that gives you space to breathe and re-energise. Whether you are a mum or not, have a business or not…..this is IMPORTANT! Plan it in…I think it actually made me more productive!

 

Don’t worry although I schedule everything in that doesn’t mean it always gets done in that order or perhaps even at all or that things don’t get missed off the list…..I am most definitely not super-mum…OMG not by any stretch of anyones imagination!

It also doesn’t mean that every part of every day has something attached to it. I just find it useful to just make sure that the work-life balance is there and aligned to what I want to achieve.

If I find too much work is scheduled in, or clubs/events have taken over our lives or I find myself getting overwhelmed then I make sure I balance things out.

 

Despite all this wonderful planning that fulfils my need to feel organised, its worth noting that by the end of a school term I lose the plot with the home/kids/school life a little….ok perhaps a lot. Why?? Perhaps I get cocky thinking I know whats the kids need doing on what day, without checking (BIG MISTAKE)…. perhaps school throws us all curve ball (NEVER APPRECIATED)….. tbh I’m not sure what happens!!

Now here’s my tip on what to do in these times? What to do when you feel like you’re dropping all those balls you are juggling? Who do you turn to? (btw a good old cry and glass of your favourite tipple is always essential in these moments of overwhelm as well! 😉 )

Well I use the fail safe of all fail safes….that which all parents use for survival …….THE TRIBE……your close friends that send those emergency texts to remind you of that surprise fancy dress day your son has forgotten to bring the letter home for……the whatsapp groups to remind you that club activity isn’t where you thought it was……..the school FB groups to remind you the online school newsletter is out or that swimming starts next week!!! I can’t thank this tribe of parents enough that come to my aid! You are all AMAZING!

 

Just a few tips and observations from a rambling planner that I hope have resonated with you, maybe helped a little…please do let me know in the comments.

Bob Dylan said ‘Chaos is a friend of mine’. For me chaos and I are BFF and as long as I plan, have the right network around me and get the balance right then I’m a happy woman in this organised chaotic world!

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