How do I plan?

Hi guys,
Today I would like to explain how do I plan. Probably all of us have so many things going on. I keep finding myself in situations, when I have so many things to do, so I have no idea where shall I start. Everything seems to be urgent, all the time household chores are pilling up (especially clothes to wash and iron; add to this a sink full of dirty dishes – where are they coming from? – and you could possibly spend all day doing just this).
To try to stay on top of all my things, never ending to-do lists and new things to do continuously coming up, I needed a great planning system. As you might have read in one of my old posts, I am using a bullet journal. I used to use nozbe, which worked great for me, but unfortunately, I kept forgetting to charge my phone and there were a moments, when I needed to write very important event or appointment and my phone just died.
So I came back to using a bullet journal again. If you haven’t heard about bullet journal before, it is a customizable planner (basically notebook, where you can include any spread you can think of – but you are setting it up by yourself), which allows you to assign how much space for each month, week, day as you need. There is an original system designed by Carroll Ryder (you can watch how it works by clicking on creator’s name).
I use my bullet journal slightly different, because I found out that I can get more things done when I plan it in kind of funnel way. So let me explain three stages of my planning.
First stage: long term planning
I make long term goals approx. every  9 to 6 months. In this stage I include all goals, projects, appointments, etc. which are going to happen any time from now to up to 12 months. I simply create a future log (you can see it in almost every bullet journal set up video). It allows me to write all deadlines, events, appointments, which are meant to happen later in the future. I also include my long term goals, divided into smaller steps (it will be helpful in my next stage). And having all this written down, I don’t have to worry about them at the moment and I am ready to move to my next stage.
Second stage: monthly planning
As you can tell by the name, this planning happens every month. That time I have a calendar for that month, where I add all events and deadlines from my future log plus anything what comes up mean while. I also make use of my goals divided into steps in the previous stage, as I am including these steps as a goals in my monthly goals spread. I also divide them for smaller steps to make it easier to work on them during the month (just small tasks I can handle during one working session). At this point, I have my weekly spreads already set, so I assign each of these steps into a particular week. This allows me to visualise how much stuff I am able to achieve each month and see what will be left in any given project.
Third stage: weekly/daily planning
This is the last stage of my planning. At the end of the week, I assign tasks for each day in the following week. After that, every day I revise what have been done, keep adding any tasks which could appear mean time. Any task which wasn’t done at planned day is being migrated to the next day or if there are a lot of tasks waiting to be done, for any other loose day.
Also, there are a lot of other stuff, which I include in my bullet journal, like finance tracker, budget planner, savings log, sleep tracker, mood tracker, etc. All this is giving me great insight into my life and helps me to implement any adjustments, whenever I notice that something doesn’t go well.
This is all for today’s post. If you have your way of planning, I will be glad to read it in a comment section. For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.
Daria

Don’t expect different results, when you keep doing same things all over again

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about an aspect known probably by most of us. Either we are guilty of doing it or at least we know someone, who’s description I am going to present to you now.

Imagine the person, who says: “I would like to change my job, but there is no other job for me”. When asked: “Have you try to apply anywhere else?”.
“Yes, I did. But I haven’t got any response.”
“Have you thought why?”
“They all were requiring certain skills, which I don’t have. But I will keep trying to apply.”
“Have you done anything to get those skills?”
“No, but I will keep applying till I will get my dream job”.
This was just example. Person, who tries to get something, knows why he is not getting it, knows, what he should do to change it, but does nothing. Just keeps doing same, not working things, hoping that next time results will be different.
He might be lucky and that might be the case, but as he keeps trying with no desired results, chances for that are very low.
Any way, the person feels that he is doing his best. He keeps thinking that everything will change one day, even if he is making same mistakes all over again (in this made up story, he doesn’t get skills necessary for his dreamed job).
Although this isn’t a real story, I think all (or at least most) of us were in that place at least once. I like to call this kind of situation as ‘one day I will…’ time. After these three dots you can put whatever you want: one day I will get new job, start my business, travel, spend more time with my family, get skills I’ve always dreamed of and many more. Possibilities are endless, as many people as many cases (and also there are some, including myself, who could think about a lot of things to include in this statement). You know, this ‘I need to get my life together. One day I will…’
The only problem is that our life is passing by, it will not stop and take a break, just because we want it to. We also tend to forget that changes take time. We can change our attitude right away, but to see results of these changes, usually takes some time. It is very important thing to realise our power and believe in our ability to change the situation we are in.
Especially, that our actions might not work and we need to look for some other ways to make changes. If we will not give ourselves a chance to make a mistake, who else will?
So today, I have a challenge for each of you: think about your perfect life and decide what is your first step to get there. And most important: take this step, no matter how bouncy and hard this road seems to be.
That’s it for today’s post. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.
Daria

How do I work with small baby at home?

Hi guys,
Today I would like to talk about a topic, which you can find a lot of questions about everywhere in the internet. There are a lot of people sharing their way of working with small baby at home, how they can to fit these two full time jobs (yes, having a baby is a full time job too, with no holiday or sick days). Answer is very simple: prioritize and make sure you are getting your stuff done whenever you can. Get as organised as you possibly cab.
I used to watch a lot of youtubers explaining how do they manage to work full time, while looking after baby or babies. They usually mention a lot of ways to make things they are doing last for as long as possible, like cook for three days, do light cleaning (like dusting, picking up stuff, etc) every day, and leave proper cleaning for one day a week. There are also advises to work while your children are asleep or busy with themselves (most of cases are for youtubers who work at home) and many more. However, the most common advice, repeating in almost every video I saw, was to use help of your family, like parents, cousins, etc.
Well, definitely great advise, there is only one problem in my case: both me and my husband are immigrants in London. My family lives in Poland, so it is a bit far for them to pop up whenever I need. My husband is from India, you can guess they might find it even more difficult to come.

So me and my husband had to manage on our own. And I must say, that our way is not perfect yet, even for us. But we are slowly but surely getting there. So let me tell you how do I work at home, after full time night shift job, while looking after baby at the same time.
First thing, is that we are trying to set our routine, which we are still working on. It is not perfect (I would say, there is still more to do, than it has been done already), but slowly, changing one thing at the time in our’s son’s life, we keep making it work well for us. I can’t say, there aren’t any obstacles on the way. When we wanted to move his sleeping time just for one hour earlier, we ended up with the little guy not sleeping during the nights at all for aprox. a week. But he is getting used to the new things. Also, he is ten months old now, so he likes to play on his own for a bit longer than he used to (usually no longer than half an hour and I need to sit not too far to make sure he won’t have any dangerous ideas), so this is the time I am using to plan my work day. After that I play with my son, take him for a walk, feed him again, change his nappy and it is nap time for him. It usually lasts for at least one hour, up to two. After he wakes up, I feed and change him again and spend some more time with him (yes, my life consists mostly of changing nappies 😉 ), before I need to leave to work. My husband is back from his work around half an hour before I need to leave, so this is time when he takes over looking after the little one while I am getting ready to leave.
Also, there are these moments when my son just sits on my laps and keeps falling asleep or play with my clothes or some toys. That time I am trying to do as much as I can too (although I can’t call it the most productive time of my day).
What about my chores? How does my home look like? Well, it is not as bad. Me and my husband share responsibility of keeping home clean. We do whatever it needs to be done. We have also some hacks, to make the process easier. For example, we cook more than we are able to eat and freeze the left overs, we do washing, when pile gets really big, this way we make sure that the washing machine isn’t running half empty. And we take turns in cleaning all the areas in home such a way, that each of us has just a small area to clean each day (let’s be honest here, except bathroom, kitchen and keeping floors clean on a daily basis, there is not such a thing like everything has to be clean every day). For some it might sound a bit weird and gross. But this is how it is. You can’t eat a cookie and have a cookie at the same time. You must give up on something, to be able to do something else. I can’t resign from my full time job just yet, as our finances would look horrible; I don’t want to sacrifice time for my son; the only thing left is home. It will not be spotless for some time, but it isn’t dirty either. So we can manage it 😉
And that’s it for today’s post. I hope that you enjoyed reading it. If you have some advices, please share them in the comment section below, I will be glad to read all of them. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.
Daria

2020 as a year of setting up good habits

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about setting New Year’s goals in general. What is the purpose of making this unofficial agreement with yourself? Why on the beginning of year, not at any time?

For this second question answer is very simple. With each year starting, there are a lot of people everywhere (literally everywhere) reflecting on their achievements, failures and events happening the year before. They are getting excited for things they want to achieve in the upcoming year. This kind of remind us that “hey, we’ve made these resolutions a year ago, let’s see how much did we manage to actually do”. They could have been made at any time in a year, but let’s be honest. Who is actually checking progress of our actions just like that? Or maybe I am the only one who needs New Year to make sure that goals will be at least reviewed?

And with the purpose of setting goals at all, there is a more complex thing to think about. I’ve came across two opinions. First stated that setting these goals actually motivate you to take an action. Second, that focusing on your goals, writing them down and seeing list of your commitments works quite opposite. For me both of above are correct to some extend. Although, I am setting goals each year, not always I am actually achieving them. But I think I found a solution.

First of all, I am not dreaming about my goals. My list works for me as a reminder and guide. Each goal has also a working plan, where it is divided into smaller parts and steps to achieve each of these parts. And finally, I am scheduling goals related task into my to do lists on weekly basis (as I plan in weekly intervals). After some time I will share with you my process of planning.

This way, my goals are not just a nice bullets in my planner. Kind of “one day” things. They are actual tasks, scheduled to work on. Like immediately. Not one day. Making sure that each week, there are some at least small steps being made towards achieving them.

And that’s it for today’s post. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Set up a routine which works for everyone at home and stick to it

Hi guys,

Today I will talk about last of my 2020 resolutions. As you could see in this post, I have decided to focus on some things which are very important to me at the moment. It might seem that I went easy on myself this year (and this is most likely true), but I wanted to set goals, which will be possible to achieve. A lot of them (if not all in some way) are connected to my financial situation, as this is the biggest problem at the moment. Although, I know that there are a lot of people in much worse situation, I am also aware that in case of any emergency, we will struggle to get back on our feet, if we will not fix it as soon as possible.

This is one of the reasons why we need to set up a routine. Having me and my husband working full time is helping us to keep paying our debt relatively quickly. But it also makes it very hard to manage. We were advised to employ someone to look after our son while we are in work. But I can’t trust any stranger to look after such small baby, especially that even if something would go wrong, he wouldn’t be able to tell us. This forced us to work in different shifts and as I can’t imagine being all day away from my son, I’ve chosen night shift (night shifts are hard too, but at least when I am working, little guy is sleeping most of the time).

There are some small things I would like to achieve in our family life, even though me and my husband are working on different shifts. I wish to be able to spend as much quality time with my son as it is possible, I would like to spend time with my husband and make sure that both of us can have time for ourselves (whether it is for working on personal projects or just relaxing). I want to make sure that our home is clean and that there is always food in our fridge too. It might seem impossible, especially with a small child. Some of you might think that I am neglecting my son just because I am working full time and I, dreaming about free time, might seem like a horrible mother. But I am a true believer that sacrificing all your dreams and goals for a baby will not do well for you and at the end for your child. Also, I think that being able to get an extra income is good for my son too. Hopefully, very soon will be able to put some funds aside for his future, we’ll be able to buy a home, so wherever life is going to take my son, he’ll always have a place to come and forget about all his problem. And finally, we’ll be able to provide for his development, give him opportunities to find his way, by simply being able to afford things, he wants to try.

Kids are very amazing and they learn unbelievably fast. But at the same time, they are not reading books or taking various courses secretly. They are learning by watching their surrounding. Especially in the beginning of their lives, we, as a parents, are all their world. I want to create believe in my son’s head that he can manage a lot of things, without neglecting anything, as long as he will try very hard. And that if you work hard on something you love doing, you can steer your life in any direction you want.

Altgough, I would like to share our routine now, I haven’t found any so far. We are still testing and keep changing small bits and pieces of it. I might be even wrong and I can’t make it work for all of my requirements, but about this I am going to tell you, when we are going to find something what will be at least the best for us.

And this is it for today’s post. I hope you enjoyed reading it. If yes, I will appreciate if you will like this post and leave your thoughts in this subject in the comment section (I will be happy to read and reply to every single comment). But for now I wish you all a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria