I just finished an e-book “One Bite at a Time; 52 projects for making life simpler” by Tsh Oxenreider.
(she has a blog “Simplemom.net” which I have not checked out yet, but will!) I highly recommend this for really any modern woman. In her book she presents 52 “projects” which are mostly good habits to foster. These are all things that she uses and implements in her own life. One of the ones that I almost immediately adopted was her daily “To-Do” list. She emphasizes over and over again throughout her book to do what you can, take baby steps until you reach your full goal. Project 39 is to create a daily to-do list. Most people’s lives are too unpredictable to make a minute by minute schedule, so instead she suggests making a “skeleton” to-do list, with no more than 10 things on it. You create this list one day at a time and make sure that your list is reasonable. (for example, if one task is going to take 3 hours, than maybe that day will only have 8 items) She also doesn’t put a time on anything unless it requires a time. (like appointments or mealtimes) and each day has 3 MITs (Most Important Tasks) so if nothing but those three things gets done, its a good day.
So I started this habit, except given my current retirement I have less pertinent things to do, the day before I pick 3 things to do. (Writing this post was one of them today!) I got this great App on my Kindle Fire, Tasks N Todos. (their website is http://www.handy-apps.com) which is where I put my list. But paper is also great for this! 😉 Then the next day I do my quiet morning stuff (Project 3) and eat my frog (project 1) then do my three tasks. Since I’ve started this, I’ve been able to cross off things on my “I wish I had time to do this” list. On my own, I think about all the STUFF I have to do, and then end up not doing any of it, because it’s overwhelming and I don’t know where to start. So by taking my list and turning it into bite size tasks, I can get more done. I don’t have to worry about the rest of the list, or the project or anything, all I have to do is the only little piece I wrote down, and if I do more, it’s a bonus! And once it is done, I get to cross it off my list. (which for a visual, list-oriented person like me, it’s very satisfying) and I can do the things I want to do, like play games, without feeling guilty.
Tsh’s whole book is full of good habits and methods and wisdom. It’s by far, the most reasonable, down-to-earth, homemaker advice book that I have ever read. All of her projects are reasonable, reachable and they really make a difference in making life run smoother. She does a good job of utilizing modern perks (She uses Pintrest, and Netflix) and more traditional methods (like Project 23, Turn off your TV regularly) I am really looking forward to (unlimited) home internet, so I can spend more time browsing her blog. For the rest of the world, I would highly recommend picking up an e-copy of her book, it’s $5 in the Amazon store, and totally worth it!