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The Three Big Rewards of Routines

We live such busy lives.

Some of our lives are structured and have a lot of routines on our day job. But at home, it is up to us. There is so much to do, and it seems like not enough time to do it all.

Let’s admit it, there isn’t enough time to do it all. So, we must decide what we must do and when.

· More routines = less stress

The more routines we have the fewer decisions we must make. Trying to remember things can be stressful and overwhelming. We don’t have to think about cleaning our teeth, because it is a habit and a routine. The more daily routines we have in place the more we feel we are in control of our environment. For example, I hate to do my Physical Therapy. If I got up every morning and thought, “I wonder when I will get my PT done?” I guarantee you that most days I’ll just get so busy and then so tired that it would not happen. So, it is my routine to do the PT right after I get dressed in the morning. Then it’s done and it no longer hangs over my head. I’m better off physically and mentally.

Daily chores like making the bed, fixing meals, cleaning the kitchen, are easier if we don’t have to think about when we are going to do them. Developing your daily routine can help you reduce your stress levels.

· More routines = more efficient

Some routines are daily but some weekly. Remember the children’s song “This Is the Way We Wash Out Clothes”? Every day had a weekly chore. Instead of each morning waking up and thinking, “Should I wash my clothes today?” what if you always did laundry on the same days or days?

While I don’t mind doing laundry, I hate to go grocery shopping. So, my routine is to go to the grocery store every Friday after work and go to the Farmers Market every Saturday after lunch. That means that on Friday I schedule time to plan my menus for the week and put together my grocery list.

Done and done.

Now, I don’t have to think each day about what’s for dinner and I know I have all the supplies to cook the meal. No extra trips to the store! It’s a fairly streamlined efficient habit that saves me time and stress.

· More routines = more free time

Knowing what you are intending on doing each day helps block distractions and gives you more energy to do the important tasks. One of my routines is to make a list of projects or tasks outside of the daily routines that I intend to do each day. I work into my schedule the 2 or 3 that are the most important to move me forward. Rather than the “I’ll do that when I get the chance.” plan of action, I schedule tasks like paying bills. I also structure my day so that I am finished with most daily chores by the evening. Of course, life happens and sometimes this won’t work for you but if you set your intention for it, it will happen more.

A lot of time can be wasted in between tasks or with just deciding what to do next. Knowing what your plan is for the day and what you want to accomplish helps you block out the distractions that can take up so much time.

If you effectively follow your schedule and routines then at the end of the day or any other scheduled time you can play that game, read that book, have coffee with a friend totally guilt free.

If you want help or just some accountability in developing or working on your time management plan join Diane Quintana and me on our Clear Space For You clutter support group.

Jonda S. Beattie, Professional Organizer owner of Time Space Organization, and co-owner of Release, Repurpose, Reorganize. She is based in the Metro-Atlanta area. As presenter, award-winning author, as well as a retired special education teacher she uses her listening skills, problem solving skills, knowledge of different learning techniques, ADHD specialty, and paper management skills to help clients tackle the toughest organizational issues. Jonda does hands on organizing and virtual organizing. For more of Jonda’s tips connect with her on Facebook.

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