By Sara, a.k.a. Sane Mama, writer at The Sanity Plan.
For those of you that missed our initial conversation about creating your Sanity Plan, you can read it here.
So far, I’ve covered the 10 Sanity Plan Principles and discussed setting Sanity Plan Goals for 5 areas of your life that you need to improve. I highlighted the importance of not trying to change everything at once in order to avoid getting further overwhelmed. I am a huge proponent of making a plan that is simple and achievable, otherwise it is hard to be motivated to start or even stay with it once you’ve begun.
So, let’s take some action on The Sanity Plan. I will use my own goals as an example:
- Work on improving the kids’ behavior (limit meltdowns, create better routines)
- Strengthen my relationship with my husband (date nights, consistent co-parenting)
- Make personal care a priority (sleep, exercise schedule, self-care plan)
- Create organizational habits and routines (conquer my clutter bug)
- Balance my work & creative projects with home life (create effective systems)
Setting Specific & Timely Goals
Now that I have targeted the areas above, I can break it down into a plan with specific ways I will work towards those goals.
Why is it important to be specific?
General goals, as in the ones above, do not give a clear enough outline of the steps needed to achieve them. I have had these goals for quite some time, but without setting specific goals to accomplish, I have not improved as much as I’ve wanted in these areas.
Why is it important to give yourself a timeline?
I don’t know about you, but when I don’t have a timeline, it takes a long time for me to get to a task, if at all. Creating a deadline for myself helps me organize my schedule around certain tasks that I know I need to do.
I’ve been thinking a lot about The Sanity Plan (can you tell?) and I’ve decided that I am going to set weekly goals each Monday. Here are my goals for this week and an explanation of my thought process for each:
Strengthen the daily morning routine consisting of getting dressed, brushing teeth, eating breakfast, packing lunch, and cleaning up from breakfast all before 8:30 am (in that order).
I am choosing this goal because we have a pretty good evening routine, but the mornings feel disorganized. And when it feels disorganized, I start my morning on the wrong foot, feeling stressed and grumpy.
Quality hubby time
Watch a movie together after the kids go to bed.
Sounds like a simple goal, but for me, I always have so much catching up to do when the kids go to bed that I feel like I can’t take the time. But for my husband, watching a movie is a great wind down activity, and he really enjoys when we do it together.
Research and purchase a diffuser for calming scents.
You can read more about my detailed self-care plan here, but essentially, I need to incorporate pleasing smells into my routine to alleviate my oversensitivity to unpleasant smells.
Put away every SINGLE piece of clean laundry.
Come hell or high water, enough is enough! I need to put everything away and start from a clean slate.
Research and sign up for either Buffer or Hootsuite so that I can schedule posts.
Right now, I am doing all of my blogging manually, which is great for learning but very time consuming. I need to research and implement available systems for automation to make my life easier.
Review Your Progress Regularly
This is often where I fall short when goal setting. Set a goal and forget it. Or, I only complete 50% of my to-do list and the rest falls by the wayside. I haven’t put a good system in place for reviewing my progress towards the goals I’ve set. So, as I considered developing my Sanity Plan, I decided that I am going to do a weekly review.
When I sit down to write my goals each Monday, I am going review how I did during the prior week.
Did I complete them all?
Where did I fall short?
What barriers were in the way?
Did I set the “right” goals?
The Secret Ingredient
What is the secret ingredient, you ask?
Yes, definitely, we must hold ourselves accountable, but our “selves” also provide a lot of reasons and excuses for not getting done what we need to. So, share your goals with a friend who wants to work on a Sanity Plan together.
Or, you could do what I am doing, which is making my goals public for all to see. Every Monday, I am going to post my weekly goals, as well as a review of how I did during the prior week. Follow along on www.thesanityplan.com.
Looking forward to a simpler, saner life.
Are you ready?
Sara, a.k.a. Sane Mama, writes about keeping her life as sane as possible while managing a family of 5 on overdrive. Check out the Sanity Plan for more on how she balances being a wife, mothering toddlers, stepparenting a teen, working for a startup, and finding her dreams. She can also be found on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.