Organizing & Time Management...Are You Ready? Part 1



Over the summer, several years ago, I taught a class to several moms to help prepare their homes for the upcoming 'school year'. I used Scripture as my basis for these two topics of exhortation and gave practical tips and a list of resources for future reference. It seems to be around this time every year that we all need a little encouragement and reminder as to why organizing and time managing are 'friends' NOT 'foes'. I have pulled some of my class notes out and will post them as a means to hopefully encourage and exhort you to begin well, stay the course and reap a blessed harvest this new 'school year'. This post is to compliment the 4 part posts recently titled "Prayer, Planning and Preparations" as well as the post titled "Logs, Schedules, Charts and More". The pictures give examples of different storage and organization methods (click "storage methods" in the article below for further ideas/explanations).

We find direction in Scripture regarding these topics...Organizing and Time Management:

There is a time* for everything, and a season* for every activity under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1

So teach us to number our days* that we may get a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12

God is not a God of disorder*, but of peace. 1 Corinthians 14:33

So I counsel younger widows to marry, to have children, to manage* their homes and to give the enemy no opportunity for slander. 1 Timothy 5:14

Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home*, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. Titus 2:4-5

(* = my emphasis added)

ORGANIZING

We all strive for peace in our homes and organizing is a means to bring that peace...the blessing. We all have different personalities, preferences, gifts, families, circumstances...the list goes on and on. As with anything we read or learn, glean and apply what will be beneficial to our family based on our needs and abilities - BUT don't NOT do anything. It is important to start... :-)

  • Choose an area you want to organize and try to visualize what that area would look like when it is completed...all the items in that area would belong, have value or purpose and be easy to utilize. A key to having the orderly home you desire is 1) not having a lot of "stuff" and 2) guarding what you bring in to your homes...don't get rid of things and then allow more to come in.

  • Have available three boxes, bins or bags labeled as DONATE/SELL, THROW AWAY and PUT AWAY

  • Set a time limit for completing the sort process (5-15 minutes depending on the area)

  • As you are working on the area, try to keep that visual picture of what you desire that area to look like. BE DISCERNING in what items you keep. These items should be items you use and fit into your 'visually organized space'. DON'T keep something with the mind set that 'you might use it or wear it someday'. This is clutter and actually causes disorganization. It takes up valuable space and time! Having less really frees you to manage well, giving time to focus on your priorities: the LORD, your husband and then your children.

  • When you have sorted all the items, 1st take the TRASH items and put in the trash can...this will eliminate the temptation to analyze and pull things back out. Next, take the DONATE/SELL box to a different location...for the same reason. (I keep a couple blank donation forms handy from a local charity, so I can complete them for tax purposes as I gather things periodically...and plan to deliver those items as soon as possible.)

  • Now thoroughly clean the empty storage area: vacuum, wipe down with cleanser and put items that you have chosen to KEEP away in this clean area. Use storage methods that will help keep this area organized. ENJOY the freedom of having a clean, orderly area and reward yourself with time saved by spending 'couch time with your husband' or 'playing a game with the kids'!
A rational step from organizing to time management is to CREATE ROUTINES & GOOD HABITS. When habits are formed, less time is taken to look for things, re-do things and it allows your mind to focus on things of importance...menus, consistently placing items in their proper place (keys, shoes, papers, school work, supplies, etc.) and doing activities at the same time each day...which will lead us to the topic of scheduling (Time Management portion of Part 2 post).

Additionally, training and delegating tasks to our children not only allows them to learn valuable life skills but shows them they are important to contributing to the family's needs. Training comes BEFORE delegation, so they will know how to properly do the task given. "Proverbs 22:6 - Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it." This can be applied to training in the life skills they will need, as well as the Biblical virtues and theology necessary for Christian living. The virtue of stewardship of time and obedience with the right heart are valuable lessons that are coupled when learning to do a 'task'. Initial time invested will be a long time blessing!

I hope that this gives you an excitement to start on the road to organizing...one area at a time. Don't allow the big picture overwhelm you...break the area down into bite sizes and begin today.




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5 comments:

Alaina @ Three Ladies and a Dad said...

Great post...I love the scripture references!

Alyssa said...

I love this what a great way to minister to others. It was encouraging!

Marci @OvercomingBusy said...

I just jumped over from Organizing Junkie. Great tips! I love how you have bins and baskets for everything!

Phoebe @ Cents to Get Debt Free said...

Great tips! I organize my kitchen cabinets the same way.

I love your scripture references. Thanks!

Bonnie said...

Wow ! Lots of info in that post ! Great job !

My contribution is here ... http://orgjunkie.com/2009/08/command-central-round-up.html