journal for time management

Journaling for Time Management

Did you know that you can Journal for time management? But first I wanted to share some of my best time management and to-do list tips and tricks.

There’s no denying that we live under a never-ending barrage of demands. The truth of the matter is that no one can manage time. What you need to do is manage where your attention goes…

Did you know that there are strategies than can actually make your to-do list easier to tackle? Most of us know what a ‘to do list’ is and yet, most people don’t use one…

Time management is a way to know where you spend your time and how you can improve it. The 4 P’s can help focus attention on the key characteristics to make you more productive…

Survey Results

If you haven’t had a chance to fill out the survey yet, check it out!

I wanted to share what you answered for the multiple-choice question, about what products you were most interested in.

  • 41% eBooks about productivity and organization
  • 29% email courses about productivity and organization
  • 22% printable planner monthly membership
  • 8% kids’ printable activity membership

And here’s a few of the suggestions from the open-ended question:

  • spreadsheets
  • customizable Canva templates
  • productivity printables
  • prompted journals
  • cheat sheets and eBook guides
  • home management

Journal for Time Management

Journaling can take many different forms. After all, journaling isn’t for anyone but ourselves. But Productivity Journaling is a unique way to use the efforts you put into your journaling practice. It is a way to track how you spend your time; it’s the other side of planning. The schedule and the to-do list are the front side of planning (and are certainly essential to time management and productivity). But journaling afterwards is how you measure of how the plan went.

You can map out your patterns: your most productive times of the day, most productive days of the week, what tasks can be batched together. All kinds of stuff!

How many times did you have to “reschedule” the conference call or the vet appointment? How close did you stick to your plan? What processes and systems can you revisit in order to better stick to your plan?

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some journal writing ideas for any age?

The habit of writing in a journal every day or a few times each week is enjoyable and
helps you manage emotions and stress too. This is as true for young children just
learning how to express themselves in the written word as for teens, college students,
working adults, and even senior citizens. Grab yourself a notebook and a pen and join
in. These journal writing ideas for all ages can help.

Journaling for Young Children

Journal writing in the lower grades may pertain mostly to things they learned or already
know. Favorite animals, holiday memories, “What did you learn today?”, and an emphasis on drawing with accompanying words make sense. Older children can begin exploring their emotions more.

  • What will life be like in five years?
  • What animal would I like to be for one day?
  • Why is my best friend the best? How can I be a great best friend too?

Journaling for Teens

Besides secret diary confessions and thoughts about their personal experiences, teens
can begin thinking about the bigger picture and the world around them. How would
they rewrite an experience they had to make it better? Prompts that focus on positive views of their individual nature are great.

  • What is your prized possession? Would you ever give it away and why?
  • Could you have handled your last argument better?
  • Write about you from your best friend’s perspective.

Journaling for Young Adults

People starting out in the world have a lot of stress. Journaling at the end of the day can help find different views about things that went on. Write about things you learned in relationships with others and yourself. Consider compliments you pay yourself, define success, or write down questions you want to ask.

  • List 5 things others (or you!) consider to be wastes of time could actually benefit you.
  • What is your biggest stressor and how can you minimize it?

Journaling for Middle Ages

Avoid making a journal into a play-by-play account of what your children did. As important as they are to your life, a journal is a place for you to re-discover yourself. They offer space to make your bucket list, reminisce on past adventures or events, and fully explore emotions tied to certain things in your life.

  • What is the biggest contribution you have made to the world? Your family?
  • What new technology do you love? Hate?
  • If you could get advice from one person on Earth, who, and what would you ask

Journaling for Seniors

Looking back can be bittersweet and journaling about the people you have met, places you have seen, and things you have done can be an adventure all its own. Make an effort to look forward when writing in your journal as well. Do you have a plan or is it
time to fly free? What did you always want to tell someone?

  • Write a letter to yourself at major life stages or events.
  • Describe the place you have been where you felt most at home.
  • What secrets are you keeping about yourself that would surprise people?
  • Make a plan for next week, month, and year.

How can I use my journal for time management and household management?

How to Use a Journal for Better Household Management

When you think about journaling, you may think about pouring out your deepest emotions about dramatic events in your life. While a journal is a great place to let it all out when you are going through a difficult situation in your personal life, it also is a great way to learn more about yourself in a more general way. With a closer look at the benefits of journaling, you may realize that this is an excellent resource to use to manage your busy household more efficiently.

Clear Your Mind

When you are stressed out about how much work you have to do around the house or how you will manage getting all of your kids to their different activities after school, you may feel overwhelmed and anxious. This mindset creates a mental challenge, and it makes it difficult for you to concentrate and to enjoy the small joys in your daily life. It can even lead to burnout. Journaling gives you an excellent way to clear your mind and to unwind.

While some people journal for up to an hour or more each day, you can simply sit down for five or ten minutes to create a small journal entry. Taking a few minutes at the beginning and end of each day really helps with journaling for time management. Plan your day and then re-assess how the plan went. This is an excellent way to improve your mental health. After your mind is clear, you may be able to think about ways to better manage your to-do-items. It may also help you to focus on the items that you are currently doing, and this can boost efficiency.

Gain Clarity About Your Daily Activities

This one is a huge component if you want to journal for time management. Because your busy schedule may be at the front of your mind, you may find that some of your free-flowing journal entries explore the activities and chores from time to time. When you spend time focusing on how and why you are doing these activities, you may find a better way to address them. With some items, you may find that they are not needed or are not convenient. For example, if your child s piano lesson is booked at the same time your other child s soccer practice is scheduled, you may realize that a simple solution is to schedule the piano lesson for a different time that is more convenient.

Determine When Chores Are Not Equally Divided

Journaling may also help you to determine if you are pulling more than your fair share of weight. Remember that chores may not be evenly split if one parent has a much more demanding work schedule than the other. However, this does not mean that you need to do all of the work. The other parent should pull some weight, and you may get the kids to pitch in and help in different ways. Journaling may give you clarity about how to allocate weekly chores so that everyone does their fair share.

Understand When You Need Extra Help

Journaling can help you in each of these ways, but there are instances when you and your family members are simply too busy to handle all aspects associated with running a busy house. If you have determined that your to-do list is too demanding and that you cannot reasonably expect to get help from your family members, you may need to look outside the home. For example, you could set up a carpool with other busy parents to get your kids to their various activities. You may determine that you need to hire an assistant at work so that you have more time to spend at home. Perhaps you can work remotely to better manage your busy home life. You may even hire maid service to clean your house periodically.

Journaling is an excellent way to reduce your stress level regardless of the source of the stress. It can help you to find balance and harmony in your life when you are going through tough times and even when your stress is caused by your daily activities or schedule. Many people who journal regularly find that they can think through their problems more clearly, and this includes both smaller or larger problems. If you do not currently have a journal, now may be a great time to begin journaling. Whether you want to journal for your own emotional growth or productive journaling for time management, the entire procedure helps center and focus you. Remember that your entries may be rather short if you have a busy schedule, but even short entries can provide you with excellent benefits.

The Best Journal Gifts for the Holidays

I want to share some of my favorite journal gifts for your friends and family (or even yourself, I won’t tell!). I’ve been searching on Etsy because Etsy creators are so creative with what they have to offer!

One of my favorite things about coming into the new year is a fresh new planner and a new journal. I’ve already started my holiday shopping because I want to have everything ordered and delivered and wrapped in time! The holidays are fast approaching. It’s like once we hit Halloween every year, someone hits the gas pedal on the year and we accelerate forwards.

Personalized Recipe Book

The perfect gift for anyone who loves to cook or bake. Ideal for keeping a record of those all important delicious family home cooked recipes that you simply do not want to forget. It comes with a beautiful Sage Green utensils cover and is personalised with real foil, in your choice of Black, Gold or Silver for that extra special touch.

Cactus Hardbound Journal

A cactus hardbound journal that is perfect to write your thoughts and travel experience. This writing journal will look good on your desk or kitchen table as you go through your to do list and organizing your thoughts. Also, perfect as a personalized gift for your best friend or mom.

Tear Off Notepad

Small tear off notepad with watercolor illustrated elements.

Peony Pattern Notebook Set

Each notebook features a different design. The first is a lush macro detail of a large painting of peonies. The second notebook features our signature Floradore pattern repeat featuring an endless supply of florals taken from different paintings.

Keep Calm Notebook

Our Spiral Notebooks are NOW WITH SEE-THROUGH PROTECTIVE COVERS and bright white 90 gsm smooth paper 🙂 Scribble Away! These notebooks are great for writing notes or even drawing some amazing doodles. Makes a wonderful useful and unique gift!
“Keep Calm, I Have a Spreadsheet for That”

Game Night Notebook

Every board gamer needs a place to record the happenings of game night. Let this Board Game Journal track wins, games played – your heart desires. This is a great gift for the board gamer in your life, as a gift for game night, or a unique Housewarming Gift – sure to make everyone chuckle.
“What Happens at Game Night… Gets Written in This Notebook”

So whether you’re looking for the best journal gifts for your sister or your coworker or even yourself, check out these selections!

strategies to beat procrastination

Strategies to Beat Procrastination

Sometimes you need to hold off on a task, job, or project because something more pressing comes up. When you continually push it off, you may be struggling with procrastination. There are many reasons people procrastinate, from perfectionism to overwhelm, but check out these strategies to beat procrastination.

strategies to beat procrastination

Figure Out Why You Procrastinate

Understanding ‘the why’ helps overcome it. Some of the reasons may include poor organization, feeling overwhelmed, and perfectionism.

Write Out a To-Do List

You may be overwhelmed at everything you need to get done. Writing everything down can help you get a better idea of what you need to do.

Prioritize What You Need to Do

List everything then prioritize what needs to be done and how much time each will take. The goal is to identify where to focus first.

Break Big Projects Down into Tasks

You move a mountain one pail of dirt at a time. It helps to break your project into smaller, more manageable tasks that you can quickly check off.

Do Away with Distractions

Completing tasks take twice as long when you’re being pulled away. Turn off all your notifications, including email and social media.

Take Care of the Hardest Job When You Are at Your Peak

Take advantage of your peak time to tackle the jobs you have been putting off. You’ll have more energy and might even be invigorated!

Tie a Reward to an Accomplishment

Some people love rewards! If you do, pick a task and set a reward for hitting a milestone or knocking something off the to-do list.

Find an Accountability Partner

Knowing you have to answer to someone can be a great motivator. Look for someone who can encourage you when you get sidetracked.

One of the best strategies to beat procrastination? Just Get Started

Getting started is often half the battle. Set a timer for 5 minutes and start. Once the timer goes off, you’re five minutes closer to getting it done!

Fast-Action Strategies to Beat Procrastination

  1. Ask yourself why you procrastinate on some jobs but not on others. You can then work on alleviating the blockers and learn how you can accomplish more.
  2. Take a piece of paper and brainstorm everything you need to do. Then, assess what you can do and what you can delegate. This frees up time for those items only you can handle.
  3. Decide on some different rewards you can give yourself, write them on slips of paper, and place them in a jar. You can have the extra fun of choosing a surprise reward once your task is complete.

Putting a Stop to Procrastination

Procrastination is a huge problem for many people. Sometimes they think that if they put something off, it will be less of a task later, but that’s not exactly true. And sometimes it’s about the fact that we don’t have the strategies to beat procrastination. At any rate, it’s a big problem, and it happens with work, household tasks, important projects and so on. people do it all the time. The following are some strategies to beat procrastination. They can help you get motivated.

1. Do Your Undesirable Tasks First

One way to trick yourself into getting happy about a task that you’re procrastinating on is to think about your desirable tasks. You can go do all those fun tasks that you love to do just as soon as you get finished with the one that seems laborious. It’s a way of tricking yourself into having mindfulness for productivity.

2. Focus on the Accomplishments

All tasks that you complete in your life are called accomplishments. You can change your mindset and turn it from negative or hesitant to positive by thinking about the accomplishment that you will have completed on that day when you can finally say that you’re done with that task. It feels good to get finished with a task, especially a challenging task. You can even promise yourself a little “reward” when you are done so that it will boost your motivation a little bit more. There’s nothing like a reward to just make you put out a sigh of relief when you’re done with something that was majorly important.

3. Be Mindful of the Other Person

If the task that you have to do is for your loved one, boss, friend or some otherwise important individual, you should consider how that person will feel if you take too long with the project. Now think about how happy that person will be when you deliver his or her product, service or favor. Think about the smile that will appear on that person’s face when you do this.

4. Tell Yourself That You Can Do This

Finally, the most important part is the “I can” specifics. tell yourself that you are more than capable of doing what you need to do. Refuse to be too tired to do it. Refuse to be too upset to do it. Refuse to put it off for another minute. Look in the mirror and say, “Today is the day that I’m going to accomplish XYZ, and just do it. Don’t even think about it. Just start doing it and then you’ll get into the groove quickly, especially if it’s a task that will get your heart rate up a little bit.

Those are just some ideas to get you out of the detrimental mindset of procrastination. Try them the next time you drag your bum on anything.

How to Avoid Procrastination

Procrastination is a habit of putting things off until the last minute, or worse, until it’s too late to get them done. It is really easy to procrastinate, especially when the only person you are accountable to is yourself. If you have been struggling with this lately, here are some tips that can help.

Identify Why You Procrastinate

It is likely that you already have a good idea about what causes you to procrastinate, whether you feel it is in your control or not. Think of it as something that triggers you to stop working, gradually lose your focus, and then begin doing other things. This might be notifications on your phone, checking your email, having tasks that are a little more difficult, or even something like the weather outside.

When you know the reasons for your procrastination, it becomes easier to avoid them.

Figure Out When You Tend to Be Less Motivated

Likewise, there may be times of the day when you are more or less motivated, and when you tend to procrastinate a little more. Maybe you are someone who gets a lot of work done early in the morning, but once the sun comes up and people get loud, you lose concentration and are far less motivated. You could also be the complete opposite, where nighttime is when you are most motivated, and are more likely to be distracted earlier in the day.

Finish Just One Small Task

If you feel like you want to procrastinate on tasks, just choose one very small thing to get done. This can give you a little momentum when you feel like all you want to do is watch Netflix or do anything but work. Pick the easiest task on your list to complete, and just get that one thing done. If you still don’t feel like working, go ahead and take a break. But in all likelihood, you will get the momentum to keep working and getting things done.

Set a Timer When Working on Projects

An easy way to stay on track even when you feel like putting it off is to set a timer. Use a Pomodoro timer where you work for 25 minutes straight, then can have a short break afterward. You can do just about anything for 25 minutes. It goes fast, and you can get a lot done when you are completely focused during that time.

Be More Organized

The more organized you are in your workspace, the less you will tend to procrastinate. It offers you less distractions and your mindset is much clearer and able to focus on work instead of the mess around you.

3 Quick Strategies and Tips to Beat Procrastination

The habit of procrastination has caused more people to fail in life than any other habit on the planet. And there are lots of strategies to beat procrastination, but check out these top three!

The cost of procrastination is the life you could have lived.

The truth is that most people want the best for their lives, and they do want to make positive changes and focus on what matters. However, in most cases, doing what you need to do is often associated with discomfort.

If you want to get fit, you’ll need to exercise daily. That will mean sweat and exertion. Unless you love exercise, this is not a pleasant thought and your mind will conjure up a thousand excuses as to why you should procrastinate the workout to the next day or skip it totally.

The same applies to any type of productive work that will elevate you to a higher level. Your mind will try to protect you from pain by cooking up multiple plausible excuses for you to avoid doing what you’re supposed to do.

1. Observe the 2-Minute Rule

Inspired by author, David Allen, this rule states that you just need to do the activity you’re avoiding for 2 minutes. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a workout session or writing a report.

If you’re avoiding it or thinking of procrastinating it, just give yourself that 2 minutes. This is a short enough duration for it not to be overwhelming and you’ll trick your mind so it doesn’t go into ‘self-preservation mode’ and cook up excuses.

In most cases, you’ll notice that once you start, the entire mental hurdle disappears. You’ll often go well past that 2 minutes and take your task to completion.

If after 2 minutes, you’re still not in the mood, you can take a break and come back to it later for another 2 minutes. Over time, your mind will get conditioned to accept a higher threshold of discomfort.

It’s overcoming the inertia and getting started which is the hardest part of the process. Quite frankly, if you just applied this hack, you’d beat procrastination most of the time.

2. Keep a Tight Schedule

An object in motion stays in motion and an object at rest stays at rest. If you want to beat procrastination, it’s best to have a tight schedule where you maintain your momentum from start to finish without taking too many breaks.

Many of the most successful people wake up early in the day and start working on their most important tasks first thing in the morning. Very often, by 1 pm, they’re done for the day and are more productive than most people who work till 5 or 6 pm.

By keeping their routine tight, they moved from one task to another in rapid fashion and didn’t give their minds much time to think of ways to procrastinate. So, you’d be wise to plan your days ahead of time and keep breaks to no longer than 10 or 15 minutes at a time.

Once the biggest chunk of your important work is done, you can take a break for an hour or so.

3. Manage Your Environment

You’d be amazed at how many distractions can pop up to detract you from the task at hand. Social media notifications, email alert, phone calls, other people, etc. can all get in the way of your daily work and disrupt your momentum.

This is why highly productive people prefer to work either very early in the morning or late at night when most people are sleeping. Do whatever you can to eliminate most of the distractions during your working hours.

You may wish to set your phone in silent mode or even place it in another room, if you can’t resist the temptation to look at it. If you’re addicted to social media, you may wish to use an app to block the sites you normally visit (during your working hours). Removing social media apps from your phone is another way to eliminate distractions.

In conclusion, procrastination is a nasty habit that will stop you from achieving your full potential – but only if you let it. Always be aware of what’s going on in your own mind, and reflect on your daily activities to see if you’re procrastinating.

From there, it’s just a matter of curbing the occasional instances when you shirk your commitments and staying on track with your daily plans.

Always remember that immediate action will destroy procrastination.

So, get started without hesitation.

pomodoro method

The Pomodoro Method

If you’ve recently tried the short-burst productivity technique, you’ve likely come across something called the Pomodoro Method or Technique. But if you’re unfamiliar with the technique, it can be difficult to use it without first gathering more information.

What is the pomodoro method?

First off, what is the Pomodoro Technique? Well, it is a type of short-burst productivity method which many experts swear has changed their lives. Those who use it tend to experience increased time management skills and productivity-all while having more free time to engage in the activities they choose than they did before.

pomodoro method

How to:

  • The Pomodoro Method is done by first selecting the task you wish to focus on, then setting a timer for twenty-five minutes.
  • Work while the timer is ticking, then when it goes off, take a quick two- or three-minute break before setting the timer for another twenty-five minutes.
  • Repeat this three times until you’ve worked for 100 minutes, then take a longer break and start at the beginning if the task is not yet complete.
  • Make sure you don’t give in to any distractions during the twenty-five-minute periods.

Where did the pomodoro method come from?

This technique was invented in Italy by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s. He was having difficulty completing his tasks and decided to set a timer for 10 minutes and then take a break. He was so surprised by how much he could accomplish that he kept on using the technique! In his original trials, the timer he used was a kitchen timer shaped like a tomato, hence the name ‘Pomodoro Technique.

Why does it work?

The Pomodoro Technique is successful for several reasons. Mostly, it works because it keeps the human mind functioning within its range of focus. Humans weren’t meant to focus on a task for hours on end without breaks, so the technique helps the mind work more efficiently in the state it was meant to work in. The average adult attention span is only about twenty or thirty minutes, which is why Cirillo chose twenty-five minutes for his technique. Not only that, but the technique also functions, in the same way, breaking a big goal into smaller goals does. It makes the work more attainable and keeps you motivated through the entire process as you conquer each achievement. Overall, the Pomodoro Technique is a very specific short-bust productivity method, one with proven results, that can help keep you on task effectively simply by splitting your work into shorter twenty-five-minute bursts.

What is short-burst productivity?

Let’s go back to the basics — the Pomodoro Method is a version of short-burst productivity. It can sometimes be difficult to stay on task and productive for extended periods. And this is why many experts recommend changing the style of your work to short dedicated bursts.

Work Smarter Not Harder

Although you may think that if you work for an eight-hour day, you will accomplish things more quickly, according to consultant Francesco Cirillo, this is not true. This is because, during a long work period, numerous distractions constantly pull you away from your work, such as emails and phone calls, which can’t be ignored. Also, the pressure on your mind to perform over a long period can quickly transform into frustration. And this frustration leads to you accomplishing less than you think. This is why it is recommended to break your workday down into shorter chunks of time.

How It Works

Short-burst productivity focuses on remaining hyper-focused for a short, specified period. And during this time, you mustn’t acknowledge any distractions.

  1. First, make a list of everything you need to get done, then you set your timer. Cirillo recommends using a physical timer and setting it for 25 minutes to start.
  2. When the timer goes off, take a 3-5-minute break to address anything you may need to, then set the timer again and do another 25 minutes.
  3. Repeat this three times until you have worked for just over 100 minutes.
  4. Then take an extended twenty-minute break before starting the cycle over again.

You’ll likely be surprised when you look back over what you accomplished.

Why A Physical Timer?

You should use a physical timer, such as a kitchen timer, and not the ‘glance at the clock’ method because having something count down that you can physically see is part of the effect. This helps you feel a sense of urgency in your work, even if the work you are completing isn’t urgent. And when the timer goes off, you will likely feel a sense of mild accomplishment of what you’ve completed. The concept of short-burst productivity may not sound like it is an efficient way to work, but experts who have worked with the human mind for years swear by it. So next time you have a large project to tackle, consider grabbing your kitchen timer and try breaking it down into easier pieces to handle.

pomodoro method

What are the benefits of short-burst productivity and the pomodoro method?

Although it may sound strange, most human productivity experts recommend that people employ the short-burst productivity methods while working. And this isn’t without reason, as they have found numerous benefits in productivity when humans work for shorter periods.

It Minimizes Distractions

In this day and age, when every employee has a personal cell phone and access to the internet, it’s extremely easy for them to get distracted from their work. This is because you never know when your phone rings if it’s something which can wait, and you have no specified time of when you should answer it, so there’s no reason not to answer it right then. When you dedicate yourself to working for 25 minutes in the short burst method, you’re less likely to engage in these distractions because you’ll have a specified break in a few minutes in which to deal with these distractions.

It Keeps You Focused

When you work for long periods of time, it’s not uncommon for the human mind to wander-this is just how the human mind is. Short productivity bursts stops this wandering in its tracks because focusing for 25 minutes is much easier than telling your mind to stay engaged for four or even eight hours. And when you’re focused, you’ll produce more work than when you keep thinking about what you will do after work every five minutes. Not only that but focusing for 25 minutes on work in front of you stops multitasking, which many people engage in even if they don’t notice.

It Challenges Your Brain

One of the main tactics of short-burst productivity is to pit your mind against a timer where you can see the remaining time countdown. Whether you realize it or not, this puts some pressure on your brain and helps your mind see the work as a challenge that it needs to complete before the time runs out. This is a stark difference from sitting at your desk all day knowing you have a deadline, but it’s hours away, so you don’t worry about it. The timer gives you a sense of urgency, which in turn gives you a sense of motivation.

Overall, there are numerous benefits to changing your work style to short-burst productivity, such as fewer distractions, increased focus, and more of a challenge for your mind. So, give short-burst productivity a day and see what all you can accomplish in your life!

Why is working in short bursts so powerful when using the pomodoro method?

pomodoro method

If you’ve ever used the short-burst productivity method for your work, you’ve likely been amazed at all you can accomplish in a cluster of short periods of work. And this isn’t by mistake-there are many reasons the human mind works better in short bursts than spending all day on one project.

Short Term Goals

In goal setting, you are encouraged to break up your largest goals into smaller pieces. This is because you’re more likely to stay motivated, on track, and focused when you have clear stepping stones to your goal. Breaking down your day of work functions in this same way, you are breaking your work into shorter goals making it easier for you to stay motivated and complete the work.

It Increases Problem Solving

When the human mind comes across a problem, it can easily become overstressed if it takes too much time focusing on the issue. And when your mind is overstressed, you’re unlikely to be able to problem-solve effectively. When work is broken into shorter bursts, where you take frequent breaks, this keeps your mind from getting overstressed and keeps you on the top of your problem-solving game.

It Mirrors The Attention Span

Although you’re an adult, you still have a maximum attention span, and at the end of this period, your mind will likely begin to wander. So why fight human nature by scheduling yourself to work for long periods when your mind is bound to wander? Exactly. The short-burst productivity method works because 25 minutes is directly in line with the average adult human attention span, working with your nature of focus instead of against it.

It’s Easier To Resist Tempting Distractions

People are often drawn away from their work by several distractions, such as talking to coworkers, their phone, or a food break. When you divide your work into smaller pieces, it becomes easier to resist the temptation to be distracted because you know you will be free in a few minutes, and it makes no sense to interrupt your workflow now. When you don’t have a specified work time and know you have a day that ends at a certain hour, you have no reason to avoid distractions. Working in short bursts is powerful. Unlike other work methods, it works with human nature, rather than against it, holding your attention, keeping you motivated, and helping you stop distractions in their tracks.

Are there any drawbacks to using the pomodoro method?

pomodoro method

Conquering your work by dividing it and completing it in short bursts has long been the favored work method of experts and workers worldwide. So, what are the drawbacks to working in short bursts? Are there any? Well, like anything in this world, there is a downside, but it isn’t as bad as you may think.

It Doesn’t Work for Every Project

There are some projects or assignments which we can’t break into smaller parts. For example, if you have to transcribe a live lecture, taking a break every twenty-five minutes isn’t feasible, and if you tried, your notes would be inconsistent and incomplete. Team projects can also be difficult to apply the short burst work method to, because sometimes it can take twenty-five minutes for everyone in the group to reign in their attention and bring the project where it needs to be. Having a timer interrupt this process could be detrimental and slow down the production process.

It Doesn’t Work for Everyone

Some people find that having a timer count down as they work makes them too anxious and edgy, and as a result, their work quality will suffer. And experiencing anxiety while you work is never a pleasant experience. If this is you, don’t force the method. You can still work for short periods and take breaks without the rigid time clock imposed by using a timer. Part of the short burst method of working is to find a work method that helps you get stuff done. If this isn’t that method, that’s okay too.

Sometimes You Work Too Fast

The short burst work method is praised for its results in the speed with which its users produce work. But sometimes, as someone is working quickly and up against a ticking clock, they may make careless mistakes that they would have caught if they were working at a slower pace. If mistakes can be detrimental to your work, you can still try the short burst method of completing tasks; just make sure you go back and check your work more slowly later.

In general, the positives of working in short bursts far outweigh the drawbacks. And even if you find a situation or project the method can’t be employed on, this doesn’t mean you can’t successfully use the tactic to complete a different project later.

How the pomodoro method could change your life

Maybe someone has introduced you to the method of working in short bursts, but it all just sounds so strange to you. And granted, it doesn’t seem like you could accomplish much in twenty-five-minute intervals, so why would you switch? Well, you might be surprised to find out that working in short bursts can change your life.

pomodoro method

What You Will Accomplish Will Astound You

The obvious change is you will be shocked by the amount of work you can get done in such a short time. You likely didn’t even realize how truly distracted you were before. And your motivation levels and sense of accomplishment will be through the roof! Which will only lead to you achieving even more!

You’ll Spend Less Time On Social Media

You probably don’t even realize how much time you currently waste away on your phone. Whether it’s scrolling through social media, watching videos, or simply surfing the net, when you split your work up into short bursts, you’ll put a timer on your social media time, which will cut it way back-and give you more time for the things which matter in life.

You’ll Remember More

Studies have shown that the longer the work period, the more your concentration, focus, and, most importantly, your memory tends to suffer. Memory world champion Dominic O’Brien swears by the short burst method and all it’s done for his astounding memory capabilities. Using this method to memorize works because when your brain focuses for too long, it gets stressed and retains less. So, when you give it frequent breaks, it has an easier time remembering the content.

You’ll Have More Free Time

Besides just trimming down your social media time, you’ll be surprised about how much spare time you have each day that you aren’t spending just staring at your computer or day dreaming out the window. With the short burst method, you are forced to use your time more effectively, keeping your brain wandering to very short, timed intervals. This will lead to having lots of time left over at the end of your day for more of the hobbies you enjoy.

Although working in short bursts might sound like a weird concept, it works, and the experts swear by it and all it has done in their lives. Give it a try today, after all, you have nothing to lose, and the method has the possibility to absolutely change your life for the better.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does the pomodoro technique work?

  • The Pomodoro Method is done by first selecting the task you wish to focus on, then setting a timer for twenty-five minutes.
  • Work while the timer is ticking, then when it goes off, take a quick two- or three-minute break before setting the timer for another twenty-five minutes.
  • Repeat this three times until you’ve worked for 100 minutes, then take a longer break and start at the beginning if the task is not yet complete.
  • Make sure you don’t give in to any distractions during the twenty-five-minute periods.

How does the pomodoro method work?

The Todoist offers a great summary of the method:

  1. Pick a task
  2. Set a 25-minute timer
  3. Work on your task until the timer goes off
  4. Take a 5-minute break
  5. Every four cycles, take a longer 15-30 minute break

most efficient way to plan meals

The Most Efficient Way to Plan Meals

I know we don’t want to think about it (or maybe we do!), but the next school year is right around the corner and with it, the schedule tends to clutter up very quickly when that happens.  I know one of the biggest stressors in our household is mealtime.  Do I need to cook?  What do I have available at home?  What do I want to cook?  Do I have to stop at the store on my way home? Enter meal planning!  I’m here to offer so many tips and tricks about the most efficient way to plan meals.  Save yourself stress, time, and yes even money!

most efficient way to plan mealsHow to Plan Your Weekly Meals

Planning for a weekly meal can prove to be a bit of a challenge, but let’s take a look at the most efficient ways to plan meals. Our schedules make it difficult to prepare a home-cooked meal on a regular basis. However, the benefits of a weakly meal far outweigh the minor inconveniences.

Foods prepared at home can prove to be much healthier compared to fast food. A lot of foods that are packaged in a box or a can are saturated with sodium, sugar, and the bad kind of fats. Foods in a box generally lack the vitamins that are essential to our bodies.

Basics of Balancing Nutrition in Your Meals

When you are working on efficiently planning your meals, you want each meal to have a good balance of nutrients. This means including enough carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats. Depending on the diet you follow or dietary restrictions, it might include fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, dairy, and many other options. It is good to aim for a colorful plate, as that ensures you are getting a wide range of vitamins and minerals.

Cooking Methods

Experiment with different cooking methods. The temperature that you choose to cook can change the chemistry of the food. For example, cooking a tomato can increase its concentration of folate and antioxidants.

Changing up how you cook can also help with the meal prep process. For example, you can have multiple appliances going at once to cook different parts of your meals, such as potatoes in the air fryer, chicken breasts in the pressure cooker, and chili in the slow cooker. This frees up your oven and stove for other things, or you can skip the oven altogether and avoid getting your house too hot from all the cooking.

Start With Family Favorites

When you start working on what meals to prepare or even prep for the week, start with some favorites you know your family enjoys. You already know the ingredients and cooking process, so this is going to make it easy. It also ensures you have at least a few meals that you don’t have to think too much about.

Use Current Ingredients

Don’t buy all new ingredients! Meal planning is easier and more cost effective when you can work from what you already have, whether that is herbs or seasonings, meat in the freezer, or milk and butter in the fridge. You can even use some leftovers for different types of meals.

meal plan on a budgetHow to Meal Plan on a Budget

Do you find that your attempts to follow a healthy diet carve into your food budget? If so, it’s never too late to change your habits. Read on to learn how planning your meals in advance can actually help you save money on food. I mean, we don’t want just the most efficient way to plan meals, we also want the budget-friendly way too!

How to Stock Your Kitchen

Seasoned grocery shoppers will know that buying in bulk is always less expensive than purchasing smaller quantities. When you’re deciding which meals to prepare for the week, consider recipes that call for versatile ingredients, such as rice, beans, or pasta. Then attempt to incorporate these into as many meals as possible.

Also know that a well-stocked pantry is one of the greatest money-saving gifts you can give yourself. When you keep a multitude of spices, salts, condiments, and other cooking staples on hand, you won’t be starting from scratch for every meal. This will make it easier for you to choose recipes based on what you have available.

Tips for Staying Under Budget

  • Make a list and stick to it: Since you already know what you’ll be making, there’s no need to fill up the cart with superfluous items. Buy only what you need for the weekly menu. This requires having a grocery list each and every time you head to the store.
  • Take stock: Chances are, you already have the building blocks for a meal or two right in your fridge or freezer without realizing it. Before you go shopping, do a quick inventory of what you have on hand. Try to incorporate any ingredients that are either nearing their expiration date, or have been hanging around in the freezer for longer than a few months.
  • Keep it simple: There’s no need to go gourmet for every meal. A savory roast chicken accompanied by steamed veggies makes a perfectly appealing dinner, and you can use any leftovers to top a salad or two later in the week.

Once you’ve gotten into the habit of planning and prepping your week’s meals in advance, you’ll find it easy to stick to the schedule—and your budget.

leftovers when meal planningDealing with Leftovers While Meal Planning

There isn’t enough love for leftovers. People often waste a lot of food simply because they keep leftovers in the fridge, and never touch them. Instead of just scraping them into the trash bin, you should utilize those leftovers for your meal planning! There’s a very happy relationship between leftovers and meal planning. Leftovers definitely help out when you’re looking for the most efficient way to plan your meals.

Make Leftovers Your Meals

If you typically use a single day of the week to do the bulk of your cooking, then you should make that meal large enough for leftovers. Something like a casserole can easily feed a family of four and then some throughout the week. It makes for a great quick-grab breakfast that you don’t have to worry about cooking. Another example might be a steak that you cook and still have plenty of meat leftover. You can continue to eat that meat throughout the week. You can even utilize portions to ensure that you’re not overdoing it on how much protein and fat you consume.

Repurposing Leftovers

Let’s say you cook something in bulk on Sunday and you’re left with a lot of leftovers. However, you’re not the type of person who can eat the same kind of meal every day. You don’t have to toss out your leftovers either. Instead, repurpose them into a new meal for your meal planning. Let’s take the example of steak again.

Sure, you could just warm up the steak and use it as a meal. Or you could cut it up a bit more and make a steak burger out of it. Throw those pieces of meat between two buns and load it up with all of the extras that you desire. This is a chance to become a little creative in the kitchen. It will not only ensure you have a lot less cooking to do overall but you’ll also never get tired of your brand-new meal.

Cook Large Meals to Make Leftovers

Finally, you need to know what kind of meals are actually the best at creating leftovers. Sometimes you just need a really good pizza to get through the week. Why not make a veggie supreme pizza? Veggie-packed and large, it can easily feed you throughout the entire week.

Use your leftovers to your full advantage, even if that means purposely cooking in bulk so you can plan several meals from one type of recipe.

meal prep and planning ideasMost Efficient Ways to Prep Meals Ahead of Time

Meal planning is essential if you plan to change your diet and focus on more healthy eating options. Without a meal plan, it is easy to make a quick stop at a drive-by or order in food because nothing in the house is defrosted. The most efficient ways to plan meals will help you avoid this and lead a healthy and happy lifestyle. Meal planning allows you to become more organized with your food options and spend less time thinking about what to eat. It also ensures no food is wasted in your household and you save a lot of money eating real food as opposed to buying fast foods.

Meal planning is not stressful if you have a system in place. When making a meal plan, stick to weekly meals instead of longer periods to switch up your diet. If you make meal preps for longer periods, you can quickly get bored with the food forcing you to eat out. Prepping is the most vital part of meal planning. Prepping ensures you have everything in place in your fridge and all that is left to do is warm up the food.  

Meal Prep

The first tip to meal prep is keeping it simple. This can be done by picking one meal to eat throughout the week. This makes prepping easier and makes you feel less stressed for the week. For instance, for lunch, you can decide to eat rice and chicken for the week. Prep the chicken and rice that will last the whole week.

The second trick is to pre-cook your meals. Pre-cooking saves a lot of time for you during the week because you only have to warm the food when it is your meal time. For instance, cook a huge batch of rice or quinoa and store it in the fridge in portions.

Additionally, you can pre-cut all your vegetables and store them in airtight bags or containers for cooking. It is much easier to make one huge mess in the kitchen instead of several huge messes throughout the week. Therefore, cut all the vegetables you have from the market.

Lastly, always have your healthy snacks prepared for the week. This ensures you have something healthy to munch on in between meals or in the morning as you rush to work or school.

prepping a month of mealsPlanning Your Meals a Month Ahead of Time

Meal planning is a great tool for almost anyone. Whether you’re a busy parent who needs to know ahead of time what’s for dinner, or a single person living a busy life full of meetings and time with friends, meal planning can help you lead the healthy lifestyle you’ve always meant to.

By planning out every dinner, possibly even lunch and breakfast if your personality is super organized, you take the stress out of cooking. You can put the menu on your fridge and rest easy knowing that you won’t have to spend your commute wondering what you’re going to whip up, when in reality, you’re already so hungry you’ll eat the first thing you see in your fridge.

Reasons to Meal Plan a Month in Advance

Meal planning can seem daunting at first, especially if you’ve never done it before. Sitting in front of a blank menu can be hard if you’re used to rummaging in your fridge until you find something that looks good every night. Filling in a week’s worth of meals can be tough, let alone a month. Tough as it may be, however, there are distinct advantages to meal planning a month in advance.

  1. By planning in advance, you’ll be able to slash your grocery bills, possibly in half. Stores want you to buy more than what’s on your list. They place tantalizing items on display that are hard to resist. The less often you’re at the store, the better. By planning a month in advance, you only need to do a large shopping trip once a month.  You can stop at a small store every week to restock on produce and milk. Plus, you’ll save more because you’ll be able to buy in bulk.
  2. It’s not as hard as you think. By setting up a meal rotation, you can easily set up a month of meals. This will save tons of time, leaving you free to cook and enjoy your meals.
  3. Meal planning can help make being healthy easier. Not only will it help relieve stress, it will let you plan your meals exactly, down to their macros. If you’re following a certain diet, meal planning is the only realistic way to stick with it. By planning far in advance, you’ll lower costs, be able to shop in bulk, and will save time. In a world that never stops running, it can feel refreshing to have a little time to rest.

Tips for Meal Planning a Month at a Time

In most respects, planning out your meals a month ahead of time, is the same as a weekly meal plan. There are just a few things to consider.  

  1. When and where to grocery shop. Just because you are planning a months’ worth of meals, doesn’t mean you are prepping and coking them all at the beginning of the month. You may want to split this up into weekly or bi-weekly grocery trips so your food doesn’t spoil.
  2. Whether or not to prepare them ahead of time. This is a really important decision to make, and one that will determine what types of meals you make. If you like freezer meals, you can definitely make more of them at once, as opposed to salads you put in jars, which won’t last nearly as long.
  3. Factoring in changes to your schedule. You probably know what is going on in the next week, but in the next month? Maybe not. This is why it’s good to have backup ideas for at least a few days out of the month when things may not go exactly according to plan.

meal planning for people who hate to cookThe Most Efficient Way to Plan Meals for People Who Hate to Cook

Not a big fan of cooking? Don’t worry – you’re not alone! Many people want to bring lunch to work or prep meals ahead of time, but struggle with the actual cooking part of it. Luckily, there are some options available, from more convenient methods of cooking, to choosing items that require absolutely no cooking or baking at all. Here are some tips for meal planning when you don’t want to cook much, or just don’t have time for it.

Utilize Different Appliances

If you aren’t interested in cooking elaborate meals, you don’t have to. In fact, you never have to turn on your stove or oven just to meal prep. But if you can turn on an appliance and just let it do its job, there are some options available to you.

  • Pressure Cooker – A pressure cooker is a type of appliance you plug in and cook foods with water and steam, as opposed to fire or an electric grill. It cooks foods in a different way, but there are many things you can do with it. You can cook chicken breasts or other types of meat, vegetables, pasta, baked potatoes, even hard boiled eggs.
  • Slow Cooker – The ultimate “set it and forget it” appliance is the slow cooker. This is great for people who don’t like to cook, since you just dump everything in and turn it on. A few hours later, your food is done.
  • Air Fryer – This is one of the newest and most popular cooking appliances around. It will cost you about $100 for a decent brand, but you get so much out of it. The air fryer is a way to cook food that is crispy and tastes fried, without actually being fried. No oil has to be used, and it cooks everything very quickly. You can make “fried” chicken in as little as 8-10 minutes, without ever turning on the stove.

Non-Cook Lunch and Dinner Options

If you want lunches and dinners that require absolutely no cooking at all, but don’t mind very minor prep work, here are some ideas:

  • Salads – Salads are healthy, pack a lot of vitamins and minerals, also something you can make without cooking anything. Want chicken on your salad, but don’t want to cook it? Just get a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and shred it up. Doesn’t get easier than that!
  • Sandwiches – This might sound boring, but there are many ways to make sandwiches. You can use bread, rolls, tortillas for wraps, and so many other items for a sandwich. It is all customizable, from the protein to the veggies, and you don’t need to turn on the stove or oven if you don’t want to.
  • Pasta or rice in a cup – Yes, these require a microwave, but that’s it I promise! These handy little cups usually don’t even require water, though some do so read the instructions.

getting bored with meal preppingHow to Avoid Getting Bored with Your Meals

Understandably, when you eat the same thing over and over through the week, your taste buds might start to become bored. Meal prep can be a great way to save money on groceries and ensure that you’re eating healthy. However, when you start to lose interest in your meals, you can become burned out. When that occurs, you’re not likely to keep sticking with the lifestyle. Since meal prep and planning can be such a great aspect to your life, you want to do everything that you can to stave off your boredom. This article will offer tips on how to stay interested in your meals throughout the week, even with all of these efficient ways to plan meals.

Add in Color

Sometimes all you need is a fresh dose of color to resume interest in eating your meals. After all, humans typically eat with their eyes first. Try cooking with many different colored vegetables and fruits. Then place those different colors throughout the week. For example, focus your first two meals on greens. Then, around the middle mark, perhaps fresh it up with some reds or purples. Utilize color to make your meal’s appearance fresh and exciting.

Make Backups

Perhaps you cooked a lasagna on the weekend. Most of the leftovers are gone so you don’t really have anything for the week. However, that doesn’t mean that the last portion should just go to waste. Instead, you make a backup meal out of it. Place the lasagna in the freezer. If at any point during your week you’re sick and tired of your current meals, then you have your backup meal–in this case, lasagna–to break up the monotony of your week.

Try Something New Each Week

For those who become bored quickly, you should try out a new recipe each week. This is a great way to further enhance your creativity in the kitchen. It can also keep your taste buds alive and excited. The more recipes that you have, the greater the variety of your meal plans.

Add Sauces

A quick and dirty way to make a meal more exciting is to add a different sauce to it. You can have the same meal every day but it can taste completely different each time depending upon what kind of sauce you use. When in doubt, make a new sauce and include it into your meals.  

kitchen appliances to plan mealsThe Best Kitchen Appliances for Meal Planning

Meal prep and planning is a great way to have meals prepared ahead of time, know exactly what you are eating each day of the week, and prepare for the busy days when you might not have time to go to the store or cook something from scratch after work.

While none of these are required, these handy tools and appliances really make the meal prep and planning process go much smoother.

Food Processor

If you plan to do a lot of chopping and dicing to prep your meals, particularly with lots of veggies, you need a food processor! This is going to save you so much time. The little extra time and energy it requires to wash this is nothing compared to dicing piles of veggies. Throw them in, turn it on, and voila!


You are probably no stranger to using a blender, but it has many uses aside from just making smoothies and margaritas. Some foods can also be cut up with a blender if you don’t have a food processor, or you need another appliance to run at the same time if you have some help in the kitchen on meal prep day. Think about what it can chop up for your smoothies, and it gives you a good idea of what this thing can do for other meal prep purposes.

Air Fryer and Pressure Cooker

Get one or both, and you will have some help in the kitchen for meal prep. They each work in different ways, and for different purposes. The pressure cooker uses water and air to cook foods, while the air fryer works by circulating air, often helped by putting a very small amount of oil on the food.

Slow Cooker

Slow cookers are still used frequently, and really help a lot when you are meal prepping. If you want to cook meals ahead of time, you can throw the ingredients in a slow cooker, turn it on, and let it cook while you prep other meals.

printable meal plannerUsing Printables for the Most Efficient Way to Plan Meals

Meal planning is one of the most important components of a healthy diet. Many people are too busy to prepare multiple healthy meals during the day. Instead of resorting to junk food or other quicker options, it’s beneficial to have meals prepared and planned beforehand. This allows people to have greater control over their diet. Although meal planning can have great results, this strategy takes some organization and preparation. Printables are a great way to simplify this process.

How are printables related to meal planning?

Meal planning is no different than any form of preparation. You’ll need some way to organize and remember the information that will be used to prepare meals in the future. Printables are a great way to organize this information in a digestible and easy-to-read format. Many printables will be divided into seven different sections denoting each day of the week. There may be divisions below these individual sections for each meal to be prepared that day. In addition to these categories, there may be a section for a grocery list or calorie counter.

Where can you find meal planning printables?

Websites focusing on health and fitness are the best places to find meal planning printables. These popular sites will usually have some templates that can be downloaded for free. Some templates can even be filled out online and then printed after completion. There are also some design websites that allow users to design their own printable for free. When designing your own printable, you can customize the format to fit your unique fitness goals and needs.

Here’s just a few beautiful ones that I’ve seen on Etsy (affiliate links):

How should you print and organize your templates?

Once you’ve found a printable to use with your meal planning, it’s time to print the template. Although you can use normal paper without any problems, it is advisable to print these meal planning templates on nicer paper that will last longer. If you’re interested in reusing a template week after week, you can place the printable in a protective sleeve or laminated shield. You’ll have a protected template, and you can write on top with an erasable marker.

How can you use your printables effectively?

Using a meal planning template effectively is as simple as remaining consistent and determined. You should start each week by writing down your intended meals for each day. If you have to purchase items from the grocery store, add these products to the grocery list section.

meal prep containersGuide to Using Meal Prep Containers

Whether you’re interested in dieting or just want to encourage yourself to eat healthier, your biggest tool is going to be meal planning. By having your week’s meals ready to go, you can cut down on the urge to choose convenient foods that aren’t always the best for you.   Meal planning is also an easy method of ensuring that you’re receiving all of the protein, vitamins, and nutrients that your body requires in a day. Choosing your meals is only half of meal planning. The other half is storage. Which containers are perfect for meal planning? That all depends on your needs. This article will discuss a few tips on how to choose the correct container for your meal planning.

Quality Matters

The first thing to remember, especially with meal containers you are bring with you to work or other places outside the home, is to choose the highest quality possible. This is going to help them last and keep your food as fresh as possible. Look for containers that come with airtight, leak-proof lids. These might be plastic or glass containers, depending on your budget and personal preference. Of course you don’t want it to leak, but being airtight will keep your food fresh, whether it is left out on the counter or your desk, or you are storing it in the fridge.

Glass Containers

There are a lot of benefits to using glass containers. They’re easier to clean, their lids are typically snug, and you can microwave them. For those who want to make their meal-times even more convenient, then you need to pick up a few glass containers. You’ll never have to worry about plastic melting in the microwave again. Or wondering what potential toxic materials are entering your food via the microwave. They can often be healthier for you and long-lasting, though expect to pay a little more for the glass containers. Many people don’t feel comfortable with glass while on-the-go, but again, it is completely a personal preference.

Portion-Focused Containers

One of the best tips for using containers to prep and plan your meals, is to use those with portions already included. These contain different compartments, making it easy to separate different parts of your meals, and has the bonus of portion control at the same time. Here are some benefits of compartment containers:

  • Everything is portioned out, which is handy for dieting.
  • It makes it easy to balance your meals in each compartment.
  • You keep your food from mixing together when you don’t want it to.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some meal planning tips and tricks for more productive meal planning?

Meal planning is an excellent strategy to use when trying to improve your food choices. During a busy day, it can be difficult to carve out enough time to prepare a healthy meal. The idea of having to prepare three meals each day can seem daunting and impossible. With the right meal planning strategy and the most efficient ways to plan your meals, you can kiss all of that stress and anxiety goodbye.   By cooking and prepping your meals for the week, you eliminate many of the worries that revolve around eating healthy during the day. In order to help you achieve your health goals, here are some tips and tricks for a more efficient meal planning strategy.

  1. Start with Your Favorite Meals: Many people make the mistake of trying to cook something new every day. How exhausting! And expensive! When you’re focusing on getting healthier, the nutrients within the meal are much more important than the appearance or taste of the dish. Instead of focusing on creating something that would make Betty Crocker happy, you should stick with your favorite meals. Sticking with simple meals will make the preparation process much quicker and easier. You can always swap out a recipe or two with each passing week. It’s important to always focus on the nutrients rather than the taste.
  2. Use Leftovers as Much as You Can: Not every meal needs to be cooked from scratch. In fact, it’s a waste of valuable time to cook each meal from the very beginning. Instead, you should take a look in the refrigerator to see what’s available. Using items already in the fridge will accomplish a few goals. First and foremost, you’ll save a lot of time that would have been spent cooking or baking from scratch. Secondly, you won’t end up having a fridge full of random food items. Tomorrow’s meals should start from the leftovers you have laying around.
  3. Have Some Essential Ingredients: Meal planning isn’t about cooking something tasty and creating a nice presentation. You can save all that effort for your next date with the in-laws. During meal prep, you should only focus on getting your required calories and macronutrients for the week. At times, this will require you to stomach some less-than-satisfying combinations of grains, vegetables, and grains. It’s always a good idea to have some essential ingredients that can make these hardy meals more palatable. Peanut, barbecue, and Tabasco sauce are a few great options that can turn any meal into a tasty treat. To make your meal planning more efficient, having the basics on hand can go a long way.

What are some easy prep and meal planning ideas?

Perhaps you’ve decided to try out meal planning. You’ll likely find that it can be an effective method for ensuring that everyone in your home receives a healthy meal with little effort. For those who are busy or just plain exhausted after a day’s worth of work, then meal planning can completely change your life. Before you can start planning your meals, however, you need to have a few recipe ideas. To help ensure you get started the right way, here a few general recipe tips to keep in mind.

Store Recipes Somewhere Easily Accessible

Let’s be honest, we’re all lazy people. Some of us can become burned out on an idea at even the smallest hint of extra effort. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing either. Work is difficult and exhausting. Add adult responsibilities on top of that and it’s no wonder you’re looking for minimal work. To ensure that your meal planning is successful, you need to store your recipes in an easily accessible place. More than that, they need to stay organized.

No one wants to spend a few minutes flipping through a book trying to find the right recipe. Organization is going to be your best friend in this regard. You may want to consider storing your recipes on a handle of one of your cupboards. Or just have it in the top drawer next to your cooking instruments.

Have a General Consensus of Everyone’s Tastes

One of the worst things that you can do is cook a meal large enough to have leftovers that carry you through the week only to find that no one likes it. That’s time, money, and effort wasted. Before you start looking or creating a recipe, you should speak to your family about what they like to eat and what they don’t like to eat. Be sure to include yourself in this interview, too. Once you have a taste collection, you can then start to look for and create recipes according to those tastes.

Stick with Themes

Another recipe idea is to stick with a theme for certain days. For example, Tuesdays can be taco night or soup night. This can make creating recipes easy. It also allows your week to be broken up just enough to ensure that you don’t get bored with the same meal.

Can you give me some ideas for a meal prep grocery list for beginners? That sounds like one of the most efficient ways to plan my meals!

Meal planning is all about convenience – it allows you to plan a week or more of meals ahead of time, often prepping them beforehand. It lets you see exactly what you will be eating each day of the week without worrying about it or wondering if you have the right ingredients, and also makes it easier to ensure your family has balanced meals.

Here are some tips for meal planning, especially when it comes to the details, like planning out your grocery list.

  • Take inventory first: Any meal planner knows that this is the first step. You need to know what you already have for a few different reasons. First of all, many leftovers can be used for different dishes, so you don’t have to waste them. It is also a good idea to take stock so you can really find the most efficient way to plan meals based around certain ingredients you have. And lastly, it keeps you from adding an item to your grocery list that you already have.
  • Start with the simplest meals first: You may only plan your dinners, or every meal of the day for each member of the family. To simplify this process, just start with the simplest meals on your list. For many people, this is breakfast. If you know you want to make an omelet every day for breakfast, you can write down the ingredients you need, and be done with that portion of the meal planning.
    • Make sure you not only write the meals you need for each one you are planning, but also the ingredients, and the amount of ingredients. Having more than one chicken dish? Look at the amount you need for each and get a good total of how much chicken o pick up if you have run out completely. This is going to prevent multiple trips to the store in the middle of the week.
  • Work on your grocery list: This one is completely up to you, but it does help to organize your list. You know what order you go in the grocery store, whether you start in produce or do the deli and bakery first, so that is how your list should be ordered. This is going to make shopping the fastest possible, and also avoid aisles with foods you don’t need, but are often tempting to you. Don’t need snacks? Avoid that aisle completely by having an organized list.