*This is my article that was published with Proverbs 31. www.Proverbs31.org
Organizing My Life With Spiral Notebooks
Searching for the perfect day planner has always been a difficult task for me. I have spent so much money on planners of every sort and size trying to find the one that would suit me and my life best. That doesn’t mean I didn’t like them, it means they just didn’t work for me. I am a full-time wife, mother and now a grandmother and I organize a Women’s Ministry at my church as well as a Bible class. I would love to share with you how I came up with a solution that has worked perfectly for me. I use the inexpensive spiral notebooks that you can find at any office supply or discount store. I have paid anywhere from ten cents to 1.00 for my spirals. I like bright colors, so I always choose the brightest assortment of covers on the spirals. Since I spend such little money on them, I don’t hesitate to tear out pages to throw away or file. With the spiral system, I can set it up anyway that I want to instead of according to someone else’s plan. As my season of life changes or I take on a particular project or ministry, I am able to incorporate a different title of notebook. I use a permanent marker to write the title on the front cover. You can also find bright small sticky note tags to mark a page that you may need to turn to on a regular basis in each notebook. I store my notebooks together on my desk for easy retrieval.
Spiral #1 – To Do
This is where I keep a running list of my to do’s for each day. Instead of little notes everywhere of things to get done, I put the today’s date at the top of the page. I make my list of things to do for that day. At the end of the day whatever is not marked off, I transfer those items to the next page with tomorrow’s date on it. I then tear out the list from today and throw away. I do this until my pages are all gone and then replace with a new spiral when needed.
Spiral #2 – Home Management
The first page of my Home Management Spiral has my house cleaning schedule. Each day I tend to a different section of the house. Which I have found is easier for me than taking an entire day to clean.
I also have a page designated for each room of my home. On this page I list my goals for that room. (Examples: Guest Bath needs new towels. Nathan’s room needs the ceiling fan cleaned.) As I complete a task for each room, I then cross off that item.
I have the habit of clipping decorating pictures out of magazines of things that I would like to try. I use a glue stick and glue them in this notebook for future reference. You may also want to have a section of books, music, or movies that you have loaned out. Anything that has to do with your home management would go in this spiral.
Spiral #3 – Kitchen
I keep a separate notebook for my kitchen. I record menu plans and recipes. I can use this same book for my grocery list as I make my menu plans. I just tear out the page before heading to the grocery store. Anything involving food and kitchen will go in here. If you love to decorate, you can even put your goals and pictures in the kitchen spiral.
Spiral #4 – Diet Journal
This is a journal that I most recently put together because I am desperately wanting to shed some pounds. I glued my before pictures for motivation. I have my measurement chart listed with my goal as well. I have recorded anything that will motivate me and encourage me in the area of a healthy eating lifestyle. I record thoughts and feelings that I’m having in the eating area. I record scriptures that the Lord has given me to comfort me. I use it as a food journal when I want to see exactly what I’m eating which will show me why I’m where I am. I have pictures from magazines of the type of clothes I would love to wear. (ex. how I would like to look in a pair of jeans) I even put in samples of hair styles to try for when I get to my goal weight and I want to treat myself to something different.
Spiral #5 – Personal Journal
This is the spiral that I record daily thoughts, ideas, dreams and goals. I try to write at least one paragraph a day on anything. Maybe a sermon I heard that sparked something or a memory I had from childhood. It could be something one of my children said or did that I don’t want to forget. I have even made a list of places I would like to travel to someday. I even record books I want to read.
Spiral # 6 – Bible Study
This is where I record scripture I’m memorizing and thoughts that come to me as I have my Bible study. I record my prayer list here as well.
We all wear different hats in our lives. Consider these notebooks your hats. Each one is for a different area of your life. I have a notebook for my Writer’s Group that I’m a member of to record thoughts and assignments in. I also have one title Women’s Ministry that I keep ideas and information in that pertain to that one certain area of my life. It has been proven that when you write down your goals, you are 80% more successful to complete that task.
A handy spot to keep your notebooks in.