In this week’s challenge, we’re working on a family calendar. While that can mean different things to different people, having one calendar where everyone’s commitments and schedules are synchronized helps you out. You can keep track of where everyone is and plan how to get each person to their events. You won’t miss something because you lost track (even something like library books). You can use the calendar to plan out meals, block in time for projects or shopping, and hold each other accountable for events–whatever you need. It can get you more organized!
Sounds great–but it will only work if you use it. So as you’re setting it up, think about these things:
- What are you doing now that works? What doesn’t work? This gives you a good starting point.
- Be sure that it is something that is not too complicated. If there is a long process involved, people are less likely to use it. So you could choose one color for each person and write their commitments in their color. But don’t try to do something like a color for each person AND their different types of commitments. Keep it relatively easy to view at a glance and to add to.
- Make it something everyone can add to. If there is only one person who is working on the calendar, and they aren’t there, it will start to fall apart! The calendar works if it is kept up to date, and that can happen only if everyone can add in their own items.
- Consider which format that works for your family: paper or electronic. If you have older kids, one of the auto-syncing multi-user calendars (like the free cozi.com or keepandshare) might be best–maybe even one on your cell phone. If you are the manager of everyone’s schedule, a wall calendar in the kitchen is a good choice.
- It should be easily accessible to everyone. Don’t put it in your bedroom or your purse (unless it’s easily accessible!)
- It should be the place where everything is written. It may take a few hours to get everything into one place, but once it’s done, you are on your way to better organization.
After you’ve set up your calendar, it’s time to get yourself and your family in the habit of using it every day. Even better, check it every weekend to prepare for the upcoming week and every night to prepare for the day ahead.
How do you keep track of your family’s schedule?