Plan to Succeed for an Organized Home

Planning separates the hapless house from the happy home. We've got four tools for keeping an organized and efficient home.

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Helpful Household Notebook DK - House Works © 2010 Dorling Kindersley LimitedPlanning saves money, saves time and cuts chaos at home.

The Four Tools for Planning
A basic plan for an organized home meshes four powerful planning tools: checklists, to-do lists, good habits and a family organizer. Together, they form a framework that saves money, saves time and cuts chaos at home.

1. Checklists These are simple-to-follow reminders of the routine tasks of each day or each week, month or season. Checklists cover recurring jobs: cleaning chores, personal care, exercise routines. They cut through mental clutter and distraction, and make clear what needs to be accomplished each day. Checklists promote delegation and family teamwork. Are the children busting to spend Saturday at the park? The morning checklist sets out the chores that need to be done before the fun part of the day can begin. Once the list is completed, bring out the picnic basket!

2. Master To-Do Lists What checklists do for recurring tasks, to-do lists accomplish for one-time chores or larger projects. Can’t sleep at night because your head rings with thoughts of what you need to do, want to do, must remember? Large or small, entrust clamoring “mind clutter” to a to-do list for a good night’s sleep. Working from a Master To-Do list, you’ll record a mix of nagging jobs, little reminders, home improvement projects, and personal goals. Moving Master To-Do list items to a running to-do list breaks down big projects into achievable tasks, and integrates those tasks into the coming days, weeks, and months. Tackling projects via the organized approach of a to-do list takes your aspirations out of the mental clouds and makes them happen.

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Excerpted from Houseworks, by Cynthia Townley Ewer

Text Copyright © 2006, 2010, Cynthia Townley Ewer, extracts from Houseworks, reproduced with permission from Dorling Kindersley Limited

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