Good morning! If you’ve been with us for Day 1, welcome back! I’m so proud of you for continuing on! If you haven’t snagged a copy yet, it’s not too late to get yours and join us! Head on over to Make Over Your Mornings to get yours now. The workbook that comes with it is invaluable – not to mention the personal videos you get to watch each day featuring Money Saving Mom‘s very own Crystal Paine. You can find Day 1’s Blog Along post here to catch up. And if you’re looking for a testimony to how wonderful this program works, you can find mine here.
Have your copy and ready to start changing your life? LET’S GO!
Often times the numerous decisions we make everyday leave us feeling drained and as though we have nothing left to give. I know there are days where it seems like all I do is make decisions, and by the time evening rolls around, the idea of even having to decide what show to watch is more than I can take.
Crystal mentioned several areas that can add to decision fatigue that don’t have to. We all have different aspects of our lives that we can simplify by merely creating a routine for them as well. You’ll come to find – even if you aren’t a routine person – that the more routines you establish in your life, the easier your day-to-day will become. Building a habit takes just 21 days, and a habit is nothing more than a routine, by definition. Routines become second nature once they’ve been established for a period of time, and that eliminates the need for decision making. Our brains are then running on auto pilot, making it a virtually painless task to go about our routines.
Once you’ve picked two areas that you’d like to replace with a system or routine, strive to hit that 21-day mark! When you’ve successfully reached that 21 day mark, pick another area of decision fatigue and set up a routine for it. If you don’t make it to the 21 days the first try – DON’T GIVE UP! Start your clock over and begin again. You WILL make it! And once you do, you’ll feel a weight off of your shoulders just by having a couple less decisions to make in your day.
One of my areas of decision fatigue stems from house cleaning. It’s so easy to get distracted by the chaos of daily life. How many of you have started a load of laundry washing only to realize the next day (or even days later *cough cough*) that you completely forgot about it, and now it’s carrying around an odor of its own? (By the way…a good wash cycle in 1 Cup baking soda and 1 Cup white vinegar with NO detergent will take care of that mildew smell. Ask me how I know…Sheesh.) A lot of times, I’ll set out with good intentions of spreading the cleaning throughout the week, but I get to Saturday and realize that nothing has gotten done, and now I have an entire house to clean top to bottom.
Quite a while ago (over 2 years ago) I created a cleaning schedule. Actually, I created two cleaning schedules – one for daily tasks and one for monthly tasks. Our oldest was getting to the age that it was time to start implementing chores into her routine, and I needed a way to keep me focused and not forgetting to have her do them. I also needed a way to keep myself accountable. So, I created these printables to help keep me on track:
I keep them taped up inside my broom closet in my kitchen (some of you may use this very closet for a pantry – my husband thought I was completely weird to put the broom and mop in there! Ha!) I put the pages inside a sheet protector, and that allowed them to be dry erase! So, when a task gets done, I use a dry erase marker to mark that off the list. So easy! If you’d like to use these printables for your own or as a starting point to establishing your own cleaning list, you can print them off here:
Monthly Cleaning Schedule – Expressions by Red The monthly schedule is packed with great home maintenance items that we homeowners tend to forget!
I mentioned it has been a while since I made these printables. Since then, we’ve had a change in schedules, our middle child is now old enough to start delegating chores to, and as of next week, I’ll be starting a part-time job outside of the home. All of these things will greatly impact this schedule, so it’s time for a new one. I’ll be spending time this week putting together a new routine that works for everyone in this season of our lives.
Another area that many people struggle with is meal planning. I touch on the topic in my blog post here and share how much meal planning has helped me over the years – not just in decision making, but in our budget as well! Meal planning can be extremely advantageous to eliminating decision fatigue at a time in everyone’s day where we’ve just had it.
Another area I’ve already eliminated decision fatigue was in the bedtime routine with the kids. If you haven’t read that post, you can find it here and learn how, with just a few simple phone alarms, I was able to diminish the stress and frustrations of getting the kids in bed every night.
On Day 8, we learned how to create a to-do list that serves, not strangles. Day 8’s lesson goes hand-in-hand with today’s. For instance, I created a “chore chart” to develop a routine of keeping the house cleaning under control. Now, to make sure I implement that chore chart into my daily life – and also ensure I hit my 21 day mark to forming a habit and rewarding myself – I can look at my chart each day when making my task list. That way, I know that my tasks include what’s on my chore chart, and I don’t wind up feeling like I’ve failed because I couldn’t remember to look at the chart. Don’t forget, I made this chart over two years ago – before I’d gone through this course – and trust me when I say, just because I spent hours making it and found a great place to hang it and swore to myself I’d implement it, doesn’t mean it actually worked. There have been plenty of times that I’ve completely forgotten it’s even there! But, now that I am writing out a daily plan of attack, I just feed it into my task list and voila! Now, I’m forming a habit, not making useless charts!
Because I plan to rework my chore chart this week to accommodate the new season of life we’re in, implementing the new chart into my routine is one of my two areas of eliminating decision fatigue. I’ll be keeping track of my success each day, and once I hit that 21-day mark, I plan to reward myself with binge-watching the last season of a show I enjoy that I never seem to have the time to do.
I’ll be back here tomorrow with my experiences and thoughts from Day Thirteen (can you believe we’re already there?!). And don’t forget, if you still haven’t gotten your hands on a copy of the Make Over Your Mornings e-course, you can do that here.
What are the two areas of decision fatigue you are going to replace with a system? How do you plan to implement it, and what will your reward be for making it for 21 days? Good luck! I know you can do it!