Monday, August 5, 2013

The Process of Creating An Ideal Life

Last Wednesday, I was lucky enough to have seven hours all to myself. 

I almost feel guilty writing that because I know it's so rare for a mother to get that much time, but wow, it was rejuvenating.

I spent a few hours that day thinking about creating an "ideal life," and I thought I'd share a little bit about what that process looks like for me (and invite you to share any tips you have).

When I say "ideal life," I don't mean a perfect life.  I just mean that each day, I want to be able to move forward--controlling the things I can control--in a way that will help me better handle everything that's hard (and there's hard stuff everyday).

So the first thing I did was sort through a file folder of notes I've collected and built upon over the past couple of years describing what would help me to feel thrilled about my life.  Here is one example:

As I went through each paper (pictured below), I jotted down common themes onto a single sheet of paper.  This became my "guiding sheet."

Then using that "guiding sheet," I drew a weekly time map that will help me structure my activities, recreation/family time, work, rest, goals, etc.  

This is my time map from last year, if you want to see a little example (sorry it's a little hard to see). 

I know that only about 50% of each week will ever go as planned, and challenges always pop up, but I also know that if I don't have a plan in place, I'll end up feeling stressed out, spread too thin, overly-emotional, discouraged, and frazzled.  

I don't like being like that.

I don't think anyone enjoys being like that.

But that's okay.  We don't have to. 

If you haven't yet created a time map for this fall, I would definitely recommend it.  I'm amazed at how excited and peaceful it's helped me to feel.  

Good luck!

Any other comments, suggestions, questions, or ideas?  I'm still tweaking my schedule, and I'd love to hear more ideas on this subject.



  1. Hi April, I love all your organizing ideas and your MOM course. I feel such a kinship to you as I was one of the few people in high school with a planner that I carried daily (just like you!). And I came back to using a Franklin Covey planner again, I used them for years then tried to do the electronic thing for a couple of years. However once I had kids it was too difficult to see all of our schedules on a small screen.

    I am in the process of doing the same thing that you have done. I have it on a spreadsheet and it shows what I'll be doing on a daily basis with kid drop offs/pick ups, house stuff and exercise scheduled in. My youngest is 18 months old so I don't have much free time on my hands but I'm cherishing this time that I have with her as it flew by with my older two kiddos.

    I hope you will make it to Northern CA for a Power of Moms conference, I would love to meet you and learn about everything that those conferences offer.

    Thanks for the wonderful sharing that you do of you and your beautiful family!

    1. Hi Kat! So great to meet you. Thanks for your kind words, and I look forward to getting together in person so we can talk about planners. :) We're hoping to come to Northern California in October. Not sure about the dates yet, but I hope it works for you! Take care!


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