brushstrokes and balance

Getting Organized

Somehow, it is already November. I don’t have any idea where the time has gone, but we are now 7 weeks from Christmas and 8 weeks from 2018. This is the time of year when schedules get a little hectic. There are the holidays, work parties, school programs, travel, shopping, shopping and more shopping for said holidays and all on top of normal everyday life. So let’s talk about organization for a minute. Let’s talk about how keeping track of your work schedule, your significant other’s work schedule, personal appointments, kids’ appointments and activities, birthday parties, and your in-law’s wedding anniversary that you can never seem to remember {hypothetically 😉 } are all dates that float around in your head like Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind.

Owning a consulting business that requires meetings with new or existing clients on a regular basis means that I have to stay on my game. If I miss a meeting, it could be a missed potential new client and missed revenue.  It could hurt my professional reputation.  It would definitely upset me that I let someone down.  So I have to stay organized.  You might think I am old school, but I live for a good paper planner! I’ve tried several and my favorite by far is the Life Planner by Erin Condren.


I love the bright colors that you can chose, all the options available (monthly, weekly, hourly, etc) and the uplifting sayings sporadically placed throughout. There are lots of accessories for your planner if you wanted a budget tracker or meal planner or lots of stickers.  Hop on over to the Erin Condren website and check out all the options.  Now is the time to get your planner for 2018!

I am one of those people who learns by writing – I used to make note cards for EVERYTHING in college and graduate school to help me remember – so it makes sense that I like to write down my appointments vs typing them or dictating them into an electronic calendar. That’s not to say that electronic calendars are not good. I still use Outlook, but I will also write those things down in my planner so I can see it all in one place. I polled some of my best friends and all but one uses electronic calendars to organize and coordinate their personal and work schedules. It seems that Outlook is the most popular for work and Google Calendar is the most popular for personal.  Both allow you to share events/appointments/etc with other people.  Outlook is my go-to for setting up meetings with clients.

My husband and I have not progressed to using Google Calendar or Outlook for our personal schedules though and we both think it’s because there are so many other items on our work calendars that our personal appointments get lost. I’m honestly not even sure that my husband keeps a personal calendar haha. I’m pretty sure I’m his personal calendar 😉 My husband is an attorney who works a lot {thank you for your hard work babe! } and travels a good bit, so for our family, we normally try to review our work and personal calendars on Sundays for the upcoming week so we both have an overview of the week ahead.

Since we both work full time and share all the kid duties, we have started to implement a “need, want, would like” list each week as well. As in “I need to go to this board meeting Thursday night”, “I want to work out 3 times this week” and “I would like to grab a drink with ____” Friday night. This exercise has made it much more likely that we get those types of things into our schedules. Otherwise, the next thing you know, its Friday (yay), but we didn’t get those “wants” and “would like” items done.

How do you keep organized for work, family, etc.? What are some things you do to stay organized that were a game changer?

A Beautiful Mind

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