Today’s Modern Mom is on the move. When she’s not driving carpool or chauffeuring her brood around town to various extra curricular activities, she is running errands. This is why the BEST organizing system for a modern mom is a mobile one.
What are the options?
For moms on the move there are two options: DIGITAL and PAPER.
While there are pros and cons to both systems it really comes down to personal preference and commitment. Whichever option you choose, you should commit to trying it for at least 90 days before deciding if it works for you or not.
Here are some of my favorite Apps for keeping your to do/Project lists:
With Reminders you can create and organize lists by deadline, priority or custom made project lists. It’s a very simple and easy to use built-in app which also works with icloud, ical, Outlook, and Siri.
Do it Tomorrow
Allows you to keep ONE running list. Anything you don’t get to rolls over to tomorrow. Probably not the best app for a procrastinator, or maybe it is?
Things offers a few more bells and whistles than the apps listed above, but is still simple to use. Things allows you to sort your lists by: Today, Next, Scheduled, Someday, and Projects. There is also an inbox where you can collect and store those “to do’s” that you aren’t yet sure where you want to put them. Things also keeps a logbook of when you complete tasks, which can come in handy. If you cannot remember where you put something there is also a search function.
Homeroutine takes the typical to do list and combines it with your household routines (which we will cover later in the series). Although the app is incredibly customizable the core principal is that you create Morning, Afternoon, Evening, Weekly, and Monthly tasks. There is also a tab for “To Do” (divided by Today, this week and later) where you can keep your to do lists right alongside your routine lists (those things you do every day). The app then allows you to check off your items as you go. Each day, week or month it “refreshes” the regularly scheduled tasks you have. If you love the Fly Lady cleaning schedule that is already preloaded on the app (you can alter as you wish). With registration you will also receive FREE sync and online editing option. The app can also be password protected if you wish.
Classic Paper Option:
A pocket sized (or slightly larger) 3-ring tabbed binder is my favorite paper option because it can easily fit in a purse or tote bag.
I suggest creating tabs for:
Keep a running list of everyone you need to call (with their number) and why. When you find yourself sitting around you can flip to your call page and knock out the calls.
Keep a running list of errands. You’ll save time and gas money if you run all your errands at once. I write the name of the place (Costco, for example) with a running list of what I need to buy there. Then when I’m out and about and find myself near a store I need to visit, I have my list already with me.
Running list of all your to do items
Separate out long term projects and create individual action items to help accomplish the goal.
Which format to use?
If you’ve had problems with organization in the past I would suggest that you pick ONE format and give it a try for 90 days. Yes, 90 days. It takes 21 to form a habit but 90 days to give a system a fair try.
If you are generally known as an organized individual who is looking for ways to improve or switch to the digital format then I would say you could probably handle keeping your lists in 2 formats without problem. You may even find that you keep certain lists in one format and others in another. That’s fine too.
Remember, you want a system that WORKS for you and is EASY to use.
Now, get to work creating those lists!