I'm a very busy mom of two boys with very different lives. One is a tween and I homeschool him. The other is 3 1/2 and he goes to preschool during the day. Outside of homeschool, I go to the gym, spend daily time with the Lord, manage the preschooler when he's home, clean the house and keep a close watch on our money because we are doing Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover". I also sing at church with our frontline and our choir. We have practices one night a week and I will be singing at least every 3rd week, both on Sundays and Wednesdays. I will also be working with K-5th graders at church to teach them three songs that they'll be singing for Easter. I love to sing and I love kids!!! I also have my own business, which I absolutely love. I have 89 people on my team and I'm trying to be a better leader for them, but sometimes it's tough to balance everything. There's so much more that I do, but I don't want to bore you with anymore details.
The reason I said all of this is to help you understand that I have a LOT to balance. I've always wanted to stick to a schedule, but thought it was just a lack of discipline that was stopping me. I've recently discovered that wasn't the problem at all. I don't know how many times I wrote out a general, weekly schedule. I would block off so many hours a day for my business, homeschool, church, etc. During those blocked off hours, things just weren't getting done like I wanted them too.
Here's what I finally found that works for me and I hope that it will be of help to you.
My new schedule has my entire day planned off in half hour time slots. I only plan one day at a time, the night before. This is very important for me. My husband's work schedule changes every day, so this is a major reason that what works one day, may not work the next. Another thing that has been a tremendous help for me is being very specific on what I'm doing during each half hour. So, instead of just saying "homeschool", I would write "Spelling & Grammar" in on a 1/2 hour time slot. Instead of saying "work on business", I would say "make calls to book parties". If I'm not able to finish something during that time frame, I stop anyway. I can either finish later in one of my free spots where I've marked something like lunch break, or if something else doesn't take the full 1/2 hour I can finish then...or if all else fails, I transfer it over to tomorrow's list.
With this new system, I've had more energy because I'm intentional on getting to the gym and starting my day with it nonetheless. I also get more accomplished in one day than I would've have done in a month. No joke!
I would love to hear your experiences with schedules and how you try to keep life balanced. Feel free to leave your comments below.