A checklist to help you make the most of a new month

Homeopathy, London, overwhelm, plan, daily routine

I don’t enjoy feeling busy, and so I have small habits that help me feel more calm.

One way I do this is to give purpose to each new month with a simple plan.

This serves as a kind of road-map and helps me make time for myself as well as make the most of my time.

I didn’t used to be so organised, I was more of a multi-tasker and I used to be proud that I was quite good at it.

The only thing was that I didn’t always feel in control and at times I would get really overwhelmed and stressed.

How not to be overwhelmed

Overwhelmed is a word I hear too often nowadays.

Everyone has too much stuff coming in.

Information to process, decisions to make, messages to read, too many invitations to respond to.

It can feel like climbing a mountain and never reaching the top.

How a monthly plan can help

With the help of a couple of books on bullet-journalling, for the last couple of years I’ve had a paper journal where I make notes and plan my time so I can do more of the important things.

Writing things on paper always helps me feel calm, and it helps me remember things too.

Each month I have one page where I write the dates down the side, plus key events, just so I can see my calendar at a glance.

Then on the facing page I have lists of the important things I need to get done during the month.

This doesn’t just include work tasks. It also includes self-care and happiness tasks.

This is important.

Part of me resists the idea of having self-care and happiness as lists in my journal

Experience has told me that when I write things down, they are far more likely to happen.

My self-care and happiness things are priorities, as when I make time for myself I am more effective everywhere else.

A checklist to make the most of a new month

Here’s my tried and tested checklist that I use to help me feel happier and more accomplished.

  1. Review the current/previous month. Write a list of all the good things from your month. Things you did, things you accomplished, anything that you’re happy about or want to remember. Also, are there any ‘loose ends’ you need to attend to?
  2. Look at the calendar three months ahead. This is how you start to think about things that aren’t happening yet, but need to plan for.
  3. Look the calendar for the new month. What are the key events? How is your schedule looking? Do you have space for anything else, or should you just start saying ‘no’ to all invitations?
  4. Who are the people you want to spend time with this month? When are you going to do that? Send messages or make calls to make sure that doesn’t slip.
  5. Do you have at least one thing you are doing by yourself, which is just for you? This is something called an ‘artist date’, a habit I picked up from The Artist’s Way. If you don’t already do this, maybe you can try it.
  6. What shopping do you need to do, so that you eat well? I have one online grocery delivery per month and a weekly organic vegetable box. The monthly delivery is something I am very focused on. I get recipes out and decide on three key meals per week, then make sure I have all the important ingredients.
  7. What self-care do you need to do? Do you need a hair cut or some other appointment? When are you having proper down-time? I try to keep Sundays simple, but sometimes this isn’t possible, and I need to simplify elsewhere.
  8. What tasks do you want to accomplish? Think about what headings would be useful for you. Mine are work, home, garden, personal. I try to have no more than two or three things under each heading. I’ve tried cramming more things in, but it doesn’t work.

That’s it.

My monthly checklist to help you get more of the important things done, including time for you.

I hope you find this helpful. If you can think of someone else who would like it too, please share.

You might also like to join my newsletter for more tips and ideas on how to be less busy and make more time for self-care.

Have a great month!

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