You, in Lists

I am the Queen of Lists. (It’s not a self-proclaimed title either; just ask anyone who knows me.) I freaking love them. I have lists for just about everything and around this time of year I like to review them (especially if I’m doing a yearly review, which I highly recommend you do as well.)

What kind of lists am I talking about? I’m talking about the lists that make up you: the things you like and dislike, the things that you think about, the dreams that you have. You have to have at least some of those written down, don’t you?

Here are some of the things that you may or may not have lists about:

  • favourite books/books to read/favourite genres
  • music to try
  • places you’ve visited
  • places to go
  • foods to try/favourite foods/restaurants
  • bucket lists/goals for week, month, year, season, vacation or life
  • movies to watch/favourite movies/TV shows
  • favourite ways of coping with stress
  • rainy day list/wish list
  • ideas for parties/birthday gifts/Christmas gifts
  • favourite board games/card games/party games
  • ideas for garden/outdoor space/home
  • favorite drinks/drinks to try
  • packing lists
  • websites to check out
  • books/items that friends have borrowed
  • savings goals
  • fitness goals
  • beauty products/treatments to try

I keep all of my “me” lists in my planner so when I’m planning a shopping trip, organizing a movie night with friends or just deciding which book to read next I have the all close at hand. It makes my daily planning more personal and purpose-driven.

Looking to try this in your own life? Here’s some examples of some of the lists I have going now:

  • This is the time of year I like to review the list of all of the items I’ve borrowed off of friends over the year. (And by items I mean books. Check out what I’m catching up on this winter here.)
  • I don’t know anything about wine so I always consult my list of favourites before I go to the store; honestly, I draw a blank every time I get there.
  • A lot of conversations with friends these days involve TV shows they’ve been binge-watching on Netflix. I try to keep track of the titles mentioned so I always have something to watch instead of scrolling through the list of Netflix recommendations for an hour. (I think my next one is Vikings. What do you guys think?)

What are some of the lists that you keep about your likes and dislikes? Where do you store them? Are there any ideas for lists that I didn’t include here? Give me a shout below or let me know at keepingbusyb@gmail.com and I’ll add your list to my list of lists!

I’m always looking for the best ways to manage my time and workflow more effectively and efficiently. If you’re looking for more ways to increase your productivity as well, click here for more strategies that I’ve developed and researched and here for more ways to stay organized. For more ways to deal with your busy lifestyle, click here.

The New Year, The New You

The arrival of a new year often signifies new beginnings for people- a chance to start over again, to refresh, to feel renewed. I feel the same way, although I’ve never really been into New Year’s resolutions. Instead, I tend to focus on certain areas of my life where I feel unsatisfied and make it my goal to work on that throughout the year. The following list contains areas of focus in my life where I have previously found room for improvement as well as some solutions as how to make those changes happen in your own life.

Make Over Your Closet

First, do yourself a favour by getting rid of all of the clothes that don’t do you any favors, and anything else that’s taking up precious wardrobe space. Next. reevaluate the clothes you still have by thinking about them in terms of outfits rather than pieces.

Make Over Your Schedule

Not a morning person? Start here. A great morning routine is key to setting you up for a productive day (even on Mondays) and can save your life when you’re running late. (While you’re at it, taking control of your errands can help cut down on your running-around time.)

Stop Procrastinating

It takes a long time to change a bad habit, so it makes sense to try and embrace your behavior to try and make it work for you. If that doesn’t work, however, you may want to look at what might be the root cause of why you procrastinate and then figure out how you can avoid it in the future.

Start a New Project

What is a project anyway and what is the best way to tackle it? There’s only two simple steps: break down all of the things that you need to do, and then organize them into to-do lists to keep track of project goals and outcomes.

Find Balance

If you’ve gotten to the point where your batteries need a recharge, then it’s time to consider how you juggle all of the different facets of your life. (And if you’re in a crisis this post, this post or this post may help you.) This year, make a vow to build a better relationship with your doctor, practice self-care, get more sleep and learn how to have some fun.

Impress Your Boss

Any boss is impressed with an employee who takes the initiative to improve themselves professionally. If you do decide to take time off this year, make sure you do these things first and you’ll win even more brownie points.

Do Better in Class

If you’re thinking about going back to school in the next year, you may want to read this. But if you’re just looking to go back to school with a new attitude, check out this post for how to take your studying routine more seriously.

What are some of your New Year’s resolutions? Which areas of your life do you hope to improve? Comment below or let’s keep the conversation between ourselves at keepingbusyb@gmail.com.

Do You Have 15 Minutes?

As the days get shorter and the number of tasks on our to-do lists grows ever longer, it’s hard to figure out sometimes even what needs to be done, let alone how much time you need to complete these projects. I’m constantly trying to find ways to maximize the spare moments in time I manage to capture throughout my day. This week, I’m blogging about what to do when you only have a minimal amount of time.

Certain necessary tasks often get overlooked or delayed because we perceive them to be more difficult or longer than they actually are. For example, when was the last time you spent an hour going through your underwear drawer? (Although to be fair, if you have enough to fill a Victoria’s Secret store an hour might not be enough!) To avoid blowing things out of proportion, time yourself the next time you take on one of these tasks. If it takes more than fifteen minutes, it may mean you need to do it more often, or find a way to pick up the pace. Try setting an alarm on your phone. Having that deadline looming over you may be just the motivation you need to try and get the following things out of the way in fifteen minutes (or less!).

• Empty out a drawer and sort it out- any drawer! Junk drawers, sock drawers and underwear drawers are often the most overlooked.
• Reorganize a drawer that’s used often and has gotten a little bit out of hand. Examples may include your cutlery drawer, your desk drawer, or the drawer of your bedside table.
• Dust bookshelves.
• Purge and reorganize your medicine cabinet.
• Organize your cleaning supplies by refilling bottles, replenishing often used items and taking stock of what’s missing.
• Purge empty bottles, unused or unwanted toiletries
• Go through your bookshelves and purge outdated or unwanted reading materials
• Replace furniture pads on furniture
• Clean your coffeemaker and/or kettle
• Organize and purge craft supplies
• Clean out your gym bag
• Clean out your fridge/freezer or any other extra refrigeration units
• Drag your luggage (suitcases, duffel bags, etc.) outside to air out, or a well-ventilated room when the weather isn’t appropriate
• Spray purses/shoes/coats and other appropriate outdoor gear with spray protectant
• Shake out outdoor cushions and floor mats
• Dust and wipe down table lamps and sconces
• Dust and wipe down light fixtures and switch plates

Here’s to a more productive day!

I’m always looking for the best ways to manage my time and workflow more effectively and efficiently. If you’re looking for more ways to increase your productivity as well, click here for more strategies that I’ve developed and researched and here for more ways to stay organized. For more ways to deal with your busy lifestyle, click here.

How do you keep busy? Share your secrets with us by commenting below, or keep it between you and I by emailing keepingbusyb@gmail.com.