Michelle is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of the Colette Louise Tisdahl Foundation
. This organization helps families in crisis due to high-risk & complicated pregnancy, NICU stays, or loss.
This week was pretty busy on the job front, but I felt a little lighter, so I’ll take the win. And answer another reader question:
Q: How do you keep organized? How organized are you?
A: I guess you are probably curious about how I manage two jobs, a business, caregiving, and living life? I wish I could say that I knew the answer. Some days I can’t even figure out how it all works myself. 😂. I will say there is coffee involved and the occasional tequila shot. But I will share some things that help me keep it all together.
📓. Bullet Journal.
I’m not even sure I can call it that since I only use the daily task/meetings page spread and the symbols. It’s my version of bullet journaling, I guess? 🤔 I love technology but have never been able to stick with a task management tool. Early in the pandemic, I started with the bullet journal (this article
got me started) and have been using it ever since. It works better to be able to write my tasks down by hand and check them off.
While I keep day-to-day tasks in my bullet journal, I like to keep less time-sensitive things here. For example, I can capture ideas for pages or posts I want to create and pieces of training I want to review at some point. It’s a straightforward app, with a “this week” section and a “later” section. If the task doesn’t go in my journal, it goes here.
📆. Google Calendar.
Appointments, meetings, and anything with a set time and place goes here. On my phone, I use the Google Calendar app, combining all my different calendars to get a sense of what’s happening on any given day.
💪🏾. Virtual Assistant.
Hiring my virtual assistant to help with graphics and social media has been a game-changer. I feel like I have more mental space to focus on some bigger-picture thinking.
🎗. Calendar Reminders.
I tend to take on too much (hard to believe, right?), so I’ve set up some daily calendar reminders that pop up at good moments for me to pause and take a breath:
- 7 am - What is the most important thing for me to do today?
- Noon - Don’t do more today than you can recover from tomorrow.
🧘🏾♀️. Self Care.
I couldn’t do much of anything without taking care of myself. At a bare minimum, I realize that I need to get 7-8 hours of sleep every night. Rest does a lot for me, including helping me focus while juggling all the balls in my life. Aside from that, I try my best to get to my BeMoved dance class every Wednesday night. Exercise, yes, but dancing is so good for my mental health. So if I can get those two things every week from a self-care perspective, I’m good.
🚫. Saying No.
This one I struggle with, but I’m getting better at it. I try to say no if an opportunity is anything other than a firm “uh-huh” from my gut. I don’t always honor that, but I’m working to improve there. Baby steps!
Sometimes different things will have to take different priority. And sometimes balls will drop, even doing this newsletter weekly
. So when that happens, I want to try to have grace with myself and prioritize rest and self-care in those moments.
Let me know if that answers your questions or if you have follow-ups on any of these. I love doing these, so if you have more questions, just reply and let me know.
On to the picks!