My word for 2011 is actually going to be the same for 2010. The word is PREPARE. I have experienced the benefits of constantly referring to it in 2010 and would like to carry over that positive momentum into 2011. Basically, this entails thinking about the day/week/month/year ahead and noting down any preparatory-type things that can be done ahead and doing so, or adding extra time to prepare before each event. Our family has some things that are already pre-planned and I (we) have made some strides this year in preparing for things ahead of time (e.g., packing the diaper bag WAY before leaving the house, planning for a week’s worth of meals, and adding an extra 20 minutes to our usual “get-ready-to-go-out-start-time”) but in many cases, we still find ourselves rushing and at times short on the reflective time pre- and post- event that allows us to have a more peaceful vibe around our lives.
I further focused on two aspects of PREPARE into Family and Friends. These are the two areas of my life that I want to always focus on so it is just a natural extension to start there.
Starting tomorrow, I embark on a new exciting position at my day job which will require us to tighten the morning routine so I can drop off our younger daughter in daycare and still get to work on-time without rushing. I was able to identify many things that I can prep the night before or even the weekend before, and I know there’s more that will come to me through the year. For example,
- Lunch notes for my older daughter – I already preprint blank ones but I can easily write these the night before (more reflective messages) as well.
- Packing non perishables in the lunchbag ahead of time – I try to pack my lunch daily and we pack my older daughter’s lunch daily so we can lay out our bags and non perishable items in there the night before
- Laying out clothes for everyone the night before
- Scheduling the replenishment cycles for diapers/wipes/school snacks on our end so we’re not rushing to bring stuff in last-minute.
We also started using Cozi this year (an online calendar/list/task manager catering to families) and with both our schedules now in e-sync (versus paper-sync which was very unreliable), we can also schedule “prep” time on the calendar so everyone knows when to get started and their tasks.
- Blocking out a day to write and send out birthday cards for the entire month ahead.
- Committing to calling my family overseas at-minumum once every two weekends and doing a web cam session every two months – this might seem a little to others but my family in Singapore stays very busy (maybe it’s genetics!) and this schedule has to be considerate of their busy schedules and our 12-hour difference as well.
- Making a standing lunch appointment on the calendar with friends.
I really like how the one little word effort is more about making it a way of life, referring to it as a general frame of mind and then extending it through all facets of my life. Even though I have two focus areas, I can use it in my day job and with my business as well. What about you? Do you have a One Little Word for 2011? If no, consider putting some thought into starting this year. :o)