Schedules… when you have to manage your own schedule it can be rough. Managing others schedule, in addition to my own, is almost impossible! Then things happen that make it all go out the window. How do I manage my busy schedule with busy teenagers and how do I handle it when things get thrown out the window… or dawn gets put in the dishwasher?? Let me tell you!
First — I schedule blocks of time for doing certain things. One of the reasons I began using this method of scheduling was that I would find that I was trying to squeeze things into 5 minutes here and there and nothing ever got accomplished or completed. Sometimes the blocks get moved around, or something needs to be changed. But, I find if I am focusing on one thing for a block of time, I am much more productive and there are fewer errors and so on! And, yes, I need to block schedule in making dinner… or no one eats. I use my Apple Calendar app for this — it is easy, it syncs to iCloud, my iPhone and my Mac and I can share the calendars with all of the other members of my household.
That brings me to the second thing I do to manage multiple schedules. Everyone in the house has their own calendar within my Apple calendar. There is even a calendar for the business I run. All of these calendars are shared with everyone in the house so we all can see what the heck is happening that day. It is sometimes difficult to make sure everything is on there — but my mantra is “on the calendar or it’s not happening” kind of like pics or it didn’t happen:) I in no way can remember every time a child comes up to me and says, “hey, I want to go over to blah blah’s house at 3 pm on Saturday 4 months from now.” So, if they want it to happen, they have learned they need to check the calendar and then add it! Basically, all of this tells me at a glance if I can add something to the calendar, or if I need some help somewhere! Like a quick glance at my calendar this week I can see I need to find someone to take Hannah to Piano lessons on Thursday since I will be working at an event for my business!
And guess what… smooooooooth transition to that third thing I do to manage all of this craziness… I ASK FOR HELP. I have friends and family in the area who are willing to shuttle kids around or take care of something at the house etc. (you might be thinking… where is the husband, why can’t he help?? He is a long-distance trucker who is almost never home) I also hire out things I hate doing so I can spend the time making money or doing something with the family. So, the cleaning on my schedule this week is actually when the company I hire to do the cleaning in my house came over and cleaned… Tuesday was also the day the lawn people came — so hey I walked in a freshly cleaned house and a freshly mowed lawn and I only had to pay the bill:) It makes me less stressed and an overall better blogger, student, mom, wife and business owner.
The last and most important thing I use when working on managing this CRAZY schedule is flexibility. Sometimes you walk in the door after work while your kids are on Spring Break and they helped you out by doing the dishes, but thought that dawn would make a good dishwasher soap since they could not find the bag of dishwasher soap sitting right in front of their face. And this is what greets you! But, hey, I had the flexibility of moving around a few things and business stuff may have been postponed until later that evening, but you know what. It all got done, and I was able to focus on what the immediate need was: encouraging the teenager to clean up the bubbles. And my house smelled like dawn, much better than the normal teenage stink:)
How do you manage your busy schedule??