/**/ The Purposeful Wife: Making Over My Evenings {Day 5}

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Making Over My Evenings {Day 5}

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I'm working my way through Crystal Paine's new course, Makeover Your Evenings- 14 days of videos, reading, and projects designed to bring more order, rest, and productivity into your life. If you'd like to grab the course and work through it right along with me, you can do so here. Each weekday night I'll be posting my takeaway from the day's coursework. I'd love to hear your thoughts on it and how you are making over your own evenings!

Just in case you've been following along and have wondered if I dropped off the face of the planet... I haven't. Due to lots of random life events, and my failure to adjust and keep running through said life events, I missed posting Friday and Monday. Please accept my sincere apologies, and let's pick up where we left off...

The objective for Day 5 of Makeover Your Evenings is to start making prioritized To Do Lists each night before bed. I talked a little bit about this in my post on The Power of Schedule.

For a time I found time blocking my day to be highly effective. Unfortunately, since then I've fallen off the band wagon. Writing out a time blocked schedule became discouraging- it was a lot of writing each day, and often very disappointing as I frequently got out of bed two hours later than my optimistic time block planned for. Oops.

I think Crystal inadvertently hit the nail on the head in the day's video- my problem in the past with this system has been failure to plan enough margin. Yes, I'd like to get up at 6:00 each morning before my children wake up... but until that's my actual practice, I should probably make a more realistic schedule.

Things almost always take much longer than we think they will {especially with three small children involved!}, and allowing for empty catch up blocks {Crystal recommends two hours} can create the space to make your plan actually work.

In her excellent ebook The Unwired Mom, Sarah Mae talks about writing out what your ideal day would be, and then what your actual day looks like. She suggests compromising the two and scheduling for a "deal" day; making a more realistic schedule that pushes you slightly closer to the ideal day while being mindful of what your actual life looks like. I read the book when it first came out almost three years ago, and the thought has stuck with me.

I think I'm ready to give daily scheduling a go again. This time I'll have to remember to allow for plenty of margin, and might try starting my written out day at 7 or 7:30. I'm going to try to consider realistic time frames for each action item, and make sure to write in extra cushion. I'll let you know how it goes!

Have you ever tried time blocking your days? What tricks have you found to maximize your productivity? How do you create margin in your life?

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