Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I Promised

I promised I'd let you know what I had come up with in my planning to get more out of my days. We ended up being invited to friends' house for Thanksgiving . . . BUT . . . I started my planning over the weekend instead of waiting till Monday! Isn't that so "redeeming the time"-ish of me? At the time I started, I had no idea that we'd be going anywhere on Monday!

So. What I've done is make a list of things that my priorities tell me need to be done each day. What are my priorities?

Everything else

The reason I stuck myself in there after the children is because my health and peace of mind are important, too, sometimes more important than anything other than God and my family. Some might put themselves closer to the top of the list, but I chose after my children and before my house.

Next, I wrote down all the things that have to be done or that I want to do, according to those priorities.
Personal devotions/Bible study
Kitchen work - cooking, cleaning up
Grading schoolwork/recording grades/lesson plans
Blogging - reading and/or writing
Internet time
Reading for pleasure
Writing articles for pay
Personal study for self-improvement - music, etc.
Study to teach Sunday School and midweek classes

Finally (and this is as far as I've gotten on this step), I set basic amounts of time I feel I should spend on each activity each day. I included kitchen time, which consists of the amount of time per day that it takes me to cook meals and clean up, an estimated 3 hours per day. I like to cook from scratch, bake, fix large meals with fresh vegetables, and I often help whichever child is cleaning up with their job, so over the course of one day, I felt that 3 hours was pretty conservative. Another example is my study time for my Sunday school class and midweek class. I have 1 1/2 hours written down, to study and prepare for those. I may find that one or the other, or both, take less time, but I'm including time to prepare visuals and games in that time too. The idea is to see where my time should be spent on the things that are important, then fill in with the less important things. So my devotions, study time, and cleaning and kitchen time are the "big" things I need to accomplish each day, and the internet, blogging, and craft times are smaller things that I can do when time allows.

I got the idea for setting my priorities and allotting definite blocks of time to them from Managers of Their Homes (MOTH), by Terri Maxwell. Mrs. Maxwell is the homeschooling mother of 8 children. She has to be scheduled to get anything done! Her book helped me the most in setting up my priorities and how much time to spend on them. It's geared toward Christian homeschooling families, but I really believe it would be a help to anyone who needed to learn to schedule their time.

I haven't yet put actual times to each of my activities, such as "Devotions from 7 AM to 7:30 AM." The past couple of days I've basically been getting those most important things done, then moving on to the others as I've had time. I am learning that, as a pastor's wife, I can't have a set schedule, but having the top priorities in front of me helps a lot to keep me focused on them . . . especially when I sit down at the computer! ;)

I have some idea of how I want my days to flow, as much as possible, and I'll share that with you tomorrow. That's because I still have to write it down! LOL


Anna said...

I never really thought of setting a schedule using the list of who and what is most important to my life. That is an interesting thought...thanks for sharing.

Tammy said...

Sounds like a great plan! I need to work on something like this for myself!