Thursday, September 13, 2007

Getting Organized

I need structure. I'm used to having a day that is divided into neat 45 minute class periods with a 25 minute lunch in the middle. I'm used to knowing what needs to get done during my prep period at school. Knowing what papers need to be corrected so I don't have to take work home. I have loved, truly loved, being at home with G-Man and I am thrilled that I'm not at school every day, but I'm finding that being at home is frustrating for me on some days. Not because I want to be somewhere else, but because for the first time in my life, I can't seem to organize my day. And after years of working multiple jobs while juggling additional projects on top of that, I'm finding that all this open time at home is slipping away from me.

I came across a great idea a month or so ago. MeckMom posted a Game Plan chart for her daily chores that she laminated and posted on the fridge. I liked it because it was simple and flexible, yet still gave her a plan for the week. I'm thinking that something like this might work. Lists aren't working for me. There are so many things I want to accomplish and the to do lists keep being written and then lost. Or I write them and then don't look at them again until I find them in my office. I also don't assign a day or a completion date to the projects on the list. To quote Covey, I'm being ruled by the "tyranny of the urgent." (Urgent = baby)

I have accomplished a few organizational tasks since G-Man was born. I organized my office and actually labeled the boxes where my crafting things are now stored. I have managed to keep up with the way G-Man's clothes and toys are organized. I reorganized my kitchen and pantry. I did plan some dinner menus this week and actually made it to the store to purchase the ingredients. I need to keep reminding myself that I am making progress. Especially when I go into the food storage section of our garage. Or when I walk into Diggity's office and see the filing system we've been planning to work on for months and months now.

One of my friends (actually, several of my friends) works for this magazine. (which I highly recommend - it's a very cool magazine) I was admiring my friend's sleek new Mom Agenda at book club tonight and was explaining this dilemma of needing some structure in my day. She sympathized and then pulled out the daily schedule for one of their writers (it was something for a magazine article, I think) and I have to say I was impressed and overwhelmed all at the same time. Clearly, this woman subscribes to the organizing theory where if you don't schedule EVERYTHING, it doesn't get done. So she has scheduled her chores, daily exercise, her e-mail time, even play time with each of her kids. It was all in a very detailed, color-coded spreadsheet. I was in awe. In the past, I probably would have tried something like that, but now I think that is a little too far in the other direction for me. I want to have structure, but it needs to allow for the flexibility an adorable 5 month old brings. I'll let you know how I'm doing...

5 comments:

ktb said...

I like to be organized but I also can be obsessed about it. It's hard to be balanced

Yvonne said...

I think you are doing a FABULOUS job when I read all that you've done since little G-man was born. Remember there is a time and a season for everything, and at this time baby comes first. Yes, some things NEED to get done and they will.

I love "To Do Lists" and I put EVERYTHING on my list--that way I feel a sense of accomplishment when I do anything ; ) I just add what didn't get done to the list tomorrow ; )

Michal said...

i almost want to be as organized as your friend with the mom agenda, and truth be told, i'd get a lot more done if i could only be online during specific "online hours." but i think that in order to really enjoy motherhood, you need some spontaneity. at the same time, there are days when i'm feeling like my kids are getting in the way of my to do list--and that's when i add "read books" and "play uno" to my list so that i remember what my priority really is.
hang in there--g-man is still a babe in arms and you've accomplished a lot. plus, i always find that around six months i hit my stride and start to think this is easy--until i go and have another one!:)

T&H&baby said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
T&H&baby said...

Macy, it's Holly, your sort-of-cousin! I can completely relate. I spent four years teaching and now I'm home full time with Lennon. While I'm grateful to be home with him, some days I just can't get it together! Yesterday our accomplishment was returning our videos to Blockbuster. Scratched THAT off our list...

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