A frequently asked question is "How do I get it all done?" and the answer is... "I don't!" I have become hyper-selective of what I say "YES" to and if I do say "YES" to a new client, event, family gathering or meeting I am fully aware of what I might have to say "NO" to something else.
When we [Patrick and I] become serious about our health we decided that Sunday will be our non-negotiable day. Meaning, we sleep in - make a coffee run - stroll the grocery store - and return to meal prep for the week ahead. We've turned down a lot of invites over the past three years and while it seems a little crazy this is our hard line in the sand.
We both tend to function better with structure rather than without a plan. Patrick uses an electronic calendar that connects to his phone, I on the other hand really struggle with electronic planning and use a paper day planner.
My planner of choice is the Happy Planner from Mambi which can be sourced online or at your local Michael's store. I am in no way affiliated with Happy Planner or Mambi instead, I am a lover of the product!
The photo below is a sample of my week ahead:
If you've searched Happy Planner on Pinterest you will find no shortage of beautifully crafted Happy Planners, but that's not me. I am all about function over a lot of stickers, embellishments, and other things to prettify a planner.
Each Sunday during meal prep when we have a break in the action I sit down and work on my planner. The first thing I do is label each of the boxes:
IMPORTANT / TO DO: This box is a combination of personal and professional to-do's, reminders, or tasks that must be completed on that specific day.
BUSINESS: Within this box - new projects, tasks, photo shoots, calls or events are listed
THE UNIVERSE: I took a manifestation workshop a few years ago and one of the biggest lessons was asking the universe for what it is you want and to be specific. I recently started to incorporate this box into my weekly calendar - so it's to be determined how effective it is
You'll notice that Monday / Tuesday are heavily planned because those are the two days currently reserved for my business. The rest of the week is dedicated to my hours at my other gig. Some of my business work does cross into the salon days, but mainly I keep those days open because it's never a guarantee that I'll have time to work on those projects.
Carving out time for Meal Prep and Fitness: Meal Prep as mentioned above is always Sunday and workouts are typically Monday - Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Leaving Thursday and Sunday for active rest days. I will from time to time add "workout" to my to-do list, but similar to that of meal prep I've made daily workouts a part of my daily routine and don't need to schedule the sessions.
Using a planner that is more like a to-do list helps me knock down the list quickly and effectively. If you are struggling to remember events, appointments or tasks I highly recommend that you start working with a planner to help with your mental sanity.
If you are struggling to make meal prep and self care a priority - you need to schedule these items into your day and into your planner. Make it a rule that you can't say YES to anything else until you are taken care of first!