Ok my fellow organizers, let’s take a look at something we all have to do…. running errands.
Never fun but something that has to be done right. Well first look at some of the more common ones. Carpooling the kids, grocery shopping, general shopping, filling the car up with gas, going to Dr. appointments, returning those library books before they are so overdue that you could have bought the book for less. I could go on and I’m sure you could too.
The thing is these are all things that need to be done and most people tend to try to cram them in when there is absolutely no way to put them off any longer, which makes the errands more than just something you need to do into something that needs to be done 2 days ago and adds to overall stress and pressure in your day to day life.
Let me run down a few ideas here to help organize and manage some of those jobs that you may currently like to put off until the last possible moment.
- If you’re married or in a committed relationship, consider splitting the load. My husband takes care of the car maintenance, making sure the gas tanks are full, and keeping the yard in order. He is also very handy fixing broken things around the house.
- Grocery Shopping has to be done, unless you can afford to eat out every day which most people can’t. You’ve heard it said never go grocery shopping on an empty stomach but I say never go grocery shopping without a list. I like to shop for a week at a time. Before I go shopping I plan first what I plan to cook for dinner each night of the week. Then I check my freezer and pantry to see what I need. Then I write a list that covers all of the meals. I also fill in general items for breakfasts and lunches. I have found that this cuts my shopping time down considerably and I don’t get home start dinner and find I need to run back to the store because I don’t have one of the ingredients for dinner. You also save money because you aren’t simply throwing random items into your cart that you may not even need.
- Household necessities such as toilet paper and laundry detergent are something everyone needs. I have found that instead of running to the store one day for toilet paper and two days later heading back for shampoo I choose one day a month and get it all. I like to head to COSTCO but Walmart, Target, wherever works. I stock up on all of my main items once a month and then I don’t have to worry about it again. My monthly stock up list looks like this; toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, soap, razors, toothpaste, laundry soap, fabric softener, stain removal, Tylenol, Advil, and cleaning supplies. Again, make the list and stick to it. If you head to one of the bulk stores you may even be able to get away with stocking up every 2 or 3 months. What you don’t want to do is run out early and have to run to the local supermarket for laundry soap or other item in that category because you will typically end up spending more.
So, go ahead, make those lists, plan ahead, and you will not only save some time and stress but you may also save some money as well. You may think that if you had the time of course you would be more organized but by taking a little time to plan out your errands you will find the extra time you so desperately need. Who knows, you may have time for a hot bath or to read a good book at home since you won’t have to stop by the store each day to pick up dinner or more shampoo.
Watch this video for more help. (If you don’t get anything out of it, hey at least he’s hot)
In my next blog, I’ll be offering some tips for organizing your house which sorry to say begins with some major cleaning for most!