Simplify Your Week

The menus need to be planned. The dogs need to be bathed. The house needs a thorough cleaning. Appointments need to be scheduled and attended. The gardening needs to be tackled. The bills need to be paid. The laundry needs to be done. I'm frazzled already and it's only Sunday!

What if there was a way to simplify a week's worth of planning and organizing so we could actually enjoy our days and not just try to get through them? In Psalm 31:15 David wrote: My times are in thy hand: deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me. Our minutes, hours and days are not ours, but God's alone. The way we use them is to be glorifying to Him.

Begin your planning in prayer. Seriously pray over what the Lord would have you accomplish and that you be shown which activities and obligations are most important. Only with God's input can we be truly effective in our service to Him, our families and our homes.

Make sure you have all of your schedules on one calendar - I get confused looking at just one some days without chasing several notebooks around the house. The best organizers have day, week and month views, so you can see at a glance what's happening. Write down all the appointments and obligations you know of for the upcoming week. If you don't combine all of this now, you'll accidently schedule two things at once or forget something completely.

Now add in the chores, errands and other tasks you need to accomplish in their appropriate places. You may not have to clean the back bedroom on Thursday, but having it written down there will keep it fresh in your mind - and give you the opportunity to check it off Thursday afternoon when you're done!

Write down your intended meal plan for each night and start on your grocery list. If there are pre-planning steps that need to be taken (like thawing out meat or looking up a recipe) jot those down on the necessary days. If there's one thing I hate it's getting halfway through meal preparation and realizing I'm either out of something or it's frozen solid. Having a plan of attack saves both time and stress.

Purposely leave space in between activities. If your day is crammed full with back-to-back-to-back jobs, you'll have no room left for emergencies, down time or fun things that might come up. If there's too much writing on each day, rethink the way you've scheduled.

Constantly be on the lookout for ways to improve your planning efficiency. A victorious Christian woman is willing to grow in God's image so she can function to the best of her ability. That includes setting priorities, planning activities and keeping them all organized.

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