I am not a plan ahead girl by nature. I resist anything that has boxes, list or deadlines.
Structure? Is not my jam.
But, what I’ve come to understand is that planning ahead has so many benefits. It was something I knew I had to incorporate into my real life. People around me would call me a planner, but I know my secret identity: the kid who did her homework on the way to school.
Spontaneity is great for going to the movies or taking a walk, but most good, healthy or fun stuff needs to be planned for.
I now have planning sessions for three time frames:
- The Month Ahead
- The Week Ahead
- The Day Ahead
In this article, we’ll be talking about planning for the month ahead and what you need to do to make the most out of your planning time.
Benefits of When You Plan Ahead
When you plan ahead it:
- helps you save money.
- gives you something to look forward to.
- means less crises in your day.
- means you get to include more people that you love.
- will save you time.
- will save you energy.
So, how do you actually plan ahead for a whole month? Here are a few key things to focus on as you learn to become a plan ahead person.
When to Plan ahead:
I have a few “Plan Ahead” times scheduled on my calendar:
One day a month is my “Plan Ahead” Day for our personal “stuff.” Yes– I take a big portion (maybe two hours) and plan ahead. But here’s the thing: On my Plan Ahead day in June, I’m not looking at June – I’m looking at July, and maybe some of August and September.
What am I planning ahead on that day? Here is my checklist of what to look at:
- What are our work/school schedules?
- What events do we have coming up? Do I need to do anything in advance for them?
- Send a gift
- Plan a party (family birthdays, events, etc.)
- Do any travel plans need to be made?
- Are there any appointments that need to be made?
- Car maintenance
- House maintenance
- DMV, insurance, etc.
- What do we want to do?
- Go away for a weekend?
- Make improvements on the house
- Work on a project?
- Getting together with friends.
- Meal Planning
Meal planning a month out may seem crazy, but since I’ve started planning meals a month in advance, we’ve saved time, money and trips to the grocery store. Yes, plans change, but boy, knowing what we want to cook saves me a whole lot of time and trauma.
What is involved in meal planning?
- Taking an inventory of what you already have
- Picking meals
- Finding recipes
- Grocery Shopping
Next month I will be sharing my strategy for how to plan ahead for the coming week. If you’re not subscribed to the blog, do it now so you won’t miss that article.
Do you have any plan ahead tips? If so, share them in the comments below. If we use one of your ideas we will send you a copy of The Cure for the Perfect Life!
She and her husband Roger are the parents of four young adults in San Jose, CA. When she’s not dating her husband or hanging out with her puggle Jake, Kathi is speaking at retreats, conferences and women’s events across the US.
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