Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Organizing for Results

I just read my one and only posting from 2011 on memory loss and my art, and yes, you've got it right, I don't remember writing it and unless a friend hadn't sent me her blog from here, I wouldn't have known I had an account here!  

So, today, what I want to cover is this, organization.  This is vital to all, not just to one with memory loss, but for me, a readable list of things I must accomplish is needed, so I remember what I did yesterday and what I need to do today.  Honestly, this is true for all!  Each day, our first 15 minutes to a half hour should be spent in planning for the day.  What have I been working on?  What steps need to be done today?  What things are vital to accomplish today that, if not done, will mess up tomorrow?

My son gave me an iPhone when he got a new one, and I downloaded a "to do list" program.  Each day, I read what I accomplished (or didn't accomplish) from yesterday.  I now will have this blogger.com aka, blogspot on my list so I don't forget about it.  Here is a sample of my list: 

1. Plan 3 art projects to work on for spring
2. Organize Art room (getting pretty messy)
3. Wash clothes
4. Do a workout
5. blogger.com - post if needed

Now, as I do these things, I mark them off.  A list of 5 things is a lot, so I have to know that something won't get completed today, but it is on the list, so I can work on it tomorrow as well.  Organization does not come easy for me, so when I type in "organize art room" and look back at it, I do chuckle.  

Organization takes time and planning.  I will have to sit down and write a list of things I need to organize, then under each item to be organized, write how to do that.  This is an all day project to do on a day that I don't have 5 things on my list, so it will most likely get carried over to tomorrow, but the point is, I know it needs to be done and if I don't write it down today, I won't remember to do it today or any day in the future.  

So, I went back to my list and changed number 2 to, "Make an organization list for art room."  This way, I begin to organize even before I get into that room to do it.  Tomorrow I may put on my list, "for each thing to be organized in art room, list a way to do that."  Then, another day will list as a task, "get materials/storage containers ready for organizing art room."  Then on the day that I write to actually organize the art room, it will be an easy flowing task where I won't get overwhelmed by the hugeness of the project.  Breaking things down into several days, helps calm the chaos felt when tackling a project that is huge!

Okay, so let's look at  another task listed-number 1, "planning 3 art projects."  That is only the beginning of this task! Tomorrow I will take one project of the three and list what materials will be needed for that project and determine if I need to buy any of them.  The next day, do another of the three, compiling the same and then the next day, on to the last.  I don't know about you, but I seem to think this list I made was easy, but in looking at it and now writing about it, I realize how I almost seem to set myself up for failure in listing these huge projects together and need to list only step one of that project, not the whole project.  You may ask why don't I do the "list of materials needed" for all three projects in one day?  It is clearly because, as I go through my day, I may come up with other things I didn't think of before to add to the materials list each time I look at my to do list.  I know from past projects, that I personally need more time to think and rethink the projects.  You may be able to do the whole list for all three in one day, but for me, I need to break things down into workable tasks so I am not so overwhelmed.

Now my day is planned and it is time to move into it!  I have my list and am able to stay on track today because the list is made!  When the end of the day comes, I will have accomplished many things instead of looking at the day and saying, "what did I get done today?"  I hope you have an awesome time organizing for results and that this will help you do so!

LuAnn Marie

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