In Pursuit of an Organized Life

. . . putting life in order


I learned something about my life through flossing.   I am flossing more.  Honestly, it’s not that flossing is my highest priority goal.  I want to do it more, but there are plenty of other goals that are more important to me.

The reason it is happening more is for a couple of reasons.

  • I am tracking it using a habit tracking app.  Every night I’m clicking whether or not I flossed.  It acts as a reminder for me to do it and also shows me how consistently (or not)  I have been doing it.


  • The other part is that it is something I can squeeze in right before bed because it is short and easy.  It almost takes more time to debate doing it than just to do it.

I’m hoping I can apply some of these ideas to some of my cleaning goals to make it more consistent.

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March Goals

Here are some goals and plans for March.  I have a few more days to brainstorm and prepare.  I have some time off so I should be able to have more time to get some of it done.

Established plans

  • Go to ice show
  • Go to Wedding shower
  • Movie party


  • Visit gym 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
  • Finnish book
  • Play a board/Card game
  • Sort through tiny toys
  • Sort through puzzles
  • Go to museum
  • Watch the snow melt!!!
  • Register for a race


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Daily Success!!

Today is the first day that I completed all of the habits I’d like to complete on a daily basis.   I even ran upstairs to floss so that I could write this post tonight. I started tracking this list a week ago hoping to take steps towards living a balanced and happy life.

I colored in all the little boxes and highlighted the column so that I could more easily see my success.  I’m hoping that this will be the first of many of these days.  Success breeds success right?

Here are some fun facts:

  • Most consistently completed–read book
  • Least likely to be completed–clean counter
  • Average number of habits completed per day 4.75 (out of 9)

I should finish my drink and get some sleep.  Enjoy your day!

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Daily Habits

For the next month, I want to focus on my daily habits.  Typically my goals have focused on long-range plans (clean out closet, sort papers, etc) or on weekly chores.  I want to focus on the daily tasks so that I can see progress faster and so that those simple tasks become something I do rather than an additional chore.

Here is what I selected:

  • Clear counter
  • Clear tables (kitchen and coffee table)
  • Clean for 15 minutes (any cleaning or organizing)
  • Floss
  • Exercise
  • Meditate/Journal
  • Talk to friend/family (not including husband and kids)
  • Practice letters/numbers with daughters
  • Read book (me or the girls)

Most of these tasks are something that I could do quickly or could spend various lengths of time doing.  Hopefully that will allow me to have some flexibility, but remain consistent.

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Sorting and Finding

Trying to spend some time sorting and organizing the clutter in our house while I have some free time. It’s finding the time to deal with the clutter without taking away the time of maintaining the house.  Then trying to find a system to remember where I put everything.

So far I’ve sorted the plastic containers with the help of my Mom. The lids are matched and my go to ones are in a plastic drawer organizer sorted by size. I threw out the ones without lids and the ones where the lids didn’t stay on.

Today I started a “Where is it” document in Access. I want to make a list of the items that we don’t use frequently and make a list of where it is stored. I’m thinking it will also be helpful to keep track of the extra food that is in the pantry. That way I don’t keep buying beans and forget to buy tomatoes. There is some initial set up time required. Then I have to remember to update it.

Next on my list is to sort my school stuff. What can the girls play with? What can I use next year? What will I not need for a while?

Off to work on that, laundry, and house. Then off to lunch at 1.

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Saturday Goals

Mom is coming later today.  Here’s what I hope to get done.  Realistically I’m aiming for 4 out of 6.

  • Clean bathrooms
  • Fold 3 loads of laundry
  • Vacuum upstairs
  • Exercise
  • Vacuum downstairs
  • Go to sale

Now to STEP AWAY from the computer!  Coffee  and mini turnovers will give me power 🙂

Four out of Six were completed by Sunday evening.  I also worked on the kitchen and swept the kitchen floor.  Most importantly relaxed with my mom, girls, and husband.

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Graph Paper Progress

I am trying a low budget low maintenance tracking of goals at work.  I took a sheet of graph paper (or in my case an intelligibility form) and divided it into two parts.  The plan is to take a highlighter and highlight boxes when I take steps towards my goal.

The top part of the paper is being used to track my fling.  Writing papers—can take time, but not that hard.  Printing papers—easy.  Putting the papers into the hanging filing cabinets in another room is my nemesis.  So every time I put a group of papers (one report etc) into the file room.  I color in one box.

The bottom part of the paper is being used to track my efforts towards using positive reinforcement strategies with students.  I have recently had several trainings regarding positive language related to dealing with behaviors and building rapport.  This part isn’t as cut as dry because there can be a grey area of what I could count.  I’m counting conscious decisions to build rapport with difficult students or situations where I used some of the  behavior strategies.

There will be no fancy graph, dates, or data points,  but there is an odd sense of satisfaction that comes with coloring in the boxes and seeing that visual of progress.

I’ll let you know how it’s working.  Maybe I’ll start one for flossing.  What simple ways have you used to monitor progress.


New Years Themes Revisited

This point in the year many people are either on their way to reaching their goals or have forgotten about them.   The good thing about writing a blog is that I can look back and see exactly what my thoughts were and see how I’m doing.  At the end of December, I decided the themes for the year were organization, fitness, and social.  Here is a brief update on those areas plus 2 I’ve added along the way.

  • Organization—I’ll keep this one short since this is the focus of the blog.   Not where I’d dream I’d be, but still making progress.  I want to make more of an effort to actually deal with clutter rather than keep putting it away.  Broken toys, books I read, but didn’t like, dealing with papers.   I have started to make a dent on my closet.
  • Fitness—-making gradual changes on fitness.  Trying to get back to the fitness level and schedule I had this time last year.  Realistically, I’m going consistently to one fitness class a week and making it to the gym overall 2-3 times a week.  I’ve been doing Zumba more lately and figuring out the moves and getting less self-conscious about dancing.  I want to increase my time at the gym and be more consistent about doing some sort of exercise at home.  Push ups and crunches before bed.
  • Social—Probably the area that I’ve made the least amount of changes.  I’ve called some friends I haven’t talked to in a while, but haven’t made much of an effort to see people in person.  I’m hoping to set up some sort of party with friends for sometime in April.  Be it just hanging out, games, wine and cheese, or at home tea party.
  • Meditation—I’ve started focusing more on meditation.  I’ve read a mindfulness book and am doing the 21 day meditation challenge.  I’ve enjoyed doing the guided meditations and feel that I am better at reducing the mental chatter.
  • Travel—-Lately, I’ve been thinking more about traveling.  I miss it.  I want to go somewhere that my husband and I haven’t been and explore it together.     We have travel options surrounding races, weddings, hiking, or family adventures.  I’d love to do a hiking trip with just the two of us, but we have some details to work out.  It has been fun looking at possible options and dreaming of a break in the routine.  I know we’d enjoy any of the trips.

That’s where I’m at now.  Did you set New Years Resolutions?  How are they going?


Goals for the Day/Weekend

Good day!   I have a lovely unstructured weekend.  After a long week, I’m ready recharge and get back to basics.  Here are my goal for the day (or more realistically the weekend).  Nothing exciting, but hopefully it will help make next week more calm.

  • drink coffee
  • exercise (step class)
  • go to library
  • make a grocery list or get groceries
  • wash 2 loadsdry 2 loads, fold put away 2 loads
  • clean all toilets
  • clean all sinks
  • make kitchen not suck
  • plan for Monday
  • meditate

Wish me luck!


No Goals to Baby Goals

I survived the first few weeks and am now trying to re-intergrate what I want to fit in. This week, I am trying to pick one priority task and plan the evening around that and whatever else happens happens. I’ve been picking the goals the night before so it’s flexible. They aren’t big goals, but a start in the right direction.

Monday—-Clean Toliets (not the whole bathroom, just toliets) (2/4 toliets cleaned)
Tuesday—-Go to the gym (went to gym, set up personal training appointment, LIGHT workout)
Tommorrow—–Find the kitchen counters 😛

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