Monday, January 24, 2011

Prioritizing your activities

Well it's the end of the month and, of course, money is tight... not that it isn't tight any other time, but for some reason it just seems harder to get through the last week of the month.

Here's a scenario: You are trying to be a little frugal on your gas because it is costing so much more now to fill the tank. But you have all these activities you are involved in... church, choir, hair dresser, kid's stuff, family, friends, lessons, grocery shopping , picking your husband up from work. You can't possible do them all.

So how do you prioritize your activities? First, try to get to an activity by riding with a friend. But if you are like me, you live out of the way for anyone to come and get you.

You need to decide which is really important. Here are some thoughts:
Combine as many activities into one day, in one trip. Don't do backtracking (my husband is famous for this).
Plan the best route and figure the time for the activity so you may do more than one thing.

For example, it's cold out, so you can do your grocery shopping in the late afternoon and still be able to attend choir practice that evening.

If you feel that it is important to be in the church for the service (you can usually see services on TV or listen to them on the radio), then be sure to go. Maybe you can then do your shopping before coming home which would put less on your trips to town.

If you have spent time with family very recently, maybe you could cancel one visit with them.

Unless the choir counts on you for a solo or important part, missing a practice may not be detrimental to the outcome. If, however, you are a vital part of the choir, then this would be a priority over the others.

You can cancel your hairdresser appointments and make it for another time... lessons can also be re-arranged. Plan these activities on the same day next month.

Friends are usually very good about changing plans. However, in order to have a good friend you need to BE a good friend, so if your friend needs you then you need to weigh the priority of either being a good friend or losing a friendship. And by "needs you" I don't mean you have lunch once a week and she would be annoyed if you missed. I mean in a time of emotional upheaval, sickness, etc.

You can get through the rough part of the month by thinking ahead. Plan your grocery shopping ahead and get it done so that you have no reason to shop during the rough times. Schedule more things on the same day so there are fewer trips to take.

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