Learn how to plan your week in five easy and practical steps. I’m going to take you through how I plan out my week in detail. This process is what makes it possible for me to accomplish working full time, being a mom to three kids (ages 7, 4, and 2), and manage and grow a blogging business on the side.
I like to be organized and on top of things, in fact, I would go as far as to say that it’s a necessity for me. But, I like for it to be simple. If I am going to follow through with it, it has to be easy enough for me to execute while I am managing three busy kids.
It makes me feel more grounded and centered. While I haven’t always been great at this specific routine, it is something I have found to be very helpful in trying to manage all of the things.
Today I wanted to share with you how I go about planning for the week on Sunday afternoons. Each Sunday afternoon I take about an hour to an hour and a half to sit down and get everything written down and planned out.
Why You Should Plan Your Week
Sunday is my go-to day because it is the day that I am naturally thinking about the week ahead. I could do this same set of habits on Saturday, but usually we are in full on weekend mode. I like to enjoy the weekend before looking ahead to the next week.
As a mom, this weekly plan is really important to how my family functions throughout the week. Sometimes it can be hard to sit down and dedicate this much time to planning. Sometimes I am getting up and helping kids get snacks or checking on them playing in the backyard. There are distractions. But I choose to make it a priority so that we can cruise through our week together.
I am sharing five simple steps you can take to plan your week and get all the things done. These five steps are the routine that I have been using and it has made a world of difference for our family. They are each really important to how I structure the week and I try to stick to these five steps to ensure that I don’t miss anything happening.
5 Easy Steps to Plan Your Week
Do a Brain Dump
When I start my plan for the week I make a big list of everything I can think of that I want or have to accomplish. This list ranges from things I have to do every week to specific tasks that pertain to a project I am working on. My goal is to simply get everything out and onto the paper so I can begin to organize the tasks into meaningful categories. I need to be able to visualize everything that is happening.
Check Your Calendar
Did you read my post on how I use a planner to keep me organized? Check out my picks for the best planners for moms here. Basically, you want to make your calendar an extension of yourself. This is where everything will be written down and you can refer to it frequently. If you don’t have a planner, I highly recommend getting one. Especially if you struggle with remembering tasks, meetings or appointments. It’s a great way to have it all in one place and be able to refer to it whenever you need.
I use both a digital and paper planner. I like having the best of both worlds with two planners. Some may ask if I think it’s overkill, but it really isn’t for me. Having two calendars helps me remember what I need to. I have to both physically write the events down and enter them into my phone calendar. The digital calendar is great for when I may not be near my paper planner. The paper planner is great for seeing everything all on one spread.
You need a calendar and you need to utilize it. Each week I get out my planner and look at my digital calendar and refer to them when I am creating my plan for the week. It’s important to look ahead and know what is coming.
Schedule Non-Negotiables and Prioritize Tasks
Take the brain dump you create for the week and figure out what the tasks are that absolutely must be accomplished. These are the non-negotiable items and are things that I have to take care of for myself or my family. Things like grocery shopping, practices, meetings, or after school events are what I consider to be my non-negotiables.
Whatever it is that has to get done for your mental or physical well-being, schedule these first! Do you thrive on working out? Or do you love getting your nails done each week? These are things to be scheduled first.
Once the absolute tasks are scheduled, then start thinking about the tasks that will give you the most relief to accomplish. Sometimes these are the things you want to do the least, but once you take charge and accomplish them, you feel one hundred times better!
Prioritize the tasks you need to accomplish by their relevancy and work on knocking those items out first.
Yep. You have to prioritize the rest that your body needs in order to accomplish all the things throughout the week. I am the worst about pushing back my bed time because I just want to keep working or binging my favorite show. I always end up paying for it the next day. It’s not just that I feel tired, either. Usually when I don’t get enough sleep it affects my skin, my eating habits, ability to focus, and so much more. So as hard as it is for me to turn my brain off, I have to make that a priority in order to create a habit that will allow me to be more productive throughout my week.
Build Routines and Systems
So this is not something I recreate each week but I do take my routines and patterns into account when I am planning for the week. I have an evening routine that is set in place for our family, this helps make sure that everything gets done for the next day the night before. It helps our mornings be less stressful and keeps the house clean and tidy.
We have a weekly date night scheduled for every Friday. My husband and I take an evening to grab a quiet meal and catch up from the week. Our kids know this is our routine and know what to expect on Friday nights.
Having these routines and patterns takes a lot of the brain energy out of planning for the week. When it’s a weekly/daily routine, it’s built into our week and becomes a natural part of what we do. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel each time. This saves us time and energy!
Not only does it do all of that, I crave routine. My kids do too. As an educator, I know that kids (no matter what they may say) need routine and boundaries. So it’s more than just a convenience for us. We absolutely know it’s essential for our family to have patterns.
And don’t forget to save this post so you can come back to it when you’re planning out your week.