Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Google Calendar Organizes Your Family's Time #lifehacks

This is what a typical Wednesday might look like, just from 7-4:30. I did not put in the rest of my kids' coop schedules nor my own because this is just a sample.

One of my biggest challenges in life (and maybe this is true for you as well) is realizing that I can't do everything all in one day. I try so hard to make myself understand that I don't have unlimited time.

Nothing helps me realize this better than when I stick with using Google Calendar for my business (five different areas), homeschooling (four kids plus coaching my oldest through a personal trainer certification, then figuring out what he wants to do after that but before police academy), and life as a married stay-at-home mom of five kids.

Google Calendar keeps me on track and shows me what is actually possible to get done in one day, as well as reminding me to do those things. It organizes my time, which is exactly what someone with ADD needs because our brains can't figure out where to fit in certain tasks (which leads to frustration, inaction, feeling dumb and foggy). It makes me more productive and makes me feel/seem like I have it all together instead of triple-booking myself with someone coming for appliance repair as well as homeschooling and a huge work deadline! (again, this happens when I actually USE the system!)

I have a calendar for my sons, Joel and Michael, since they are both working and driving now. I have a calendar for my husband, as well, since sometimes he works late or travels. He also has church meetings some mornings and Adoration once a week. Sometimes he forgets these things but my Google Calendar reminds me, and I remind him. He doesn't want to be a slave to a phone/calendar so I feel like I can help him in this way as part of my job as House Manager.

It took me forever to start getting things in the Google Calendar, honestly. But I got so tired of carrying around pieces of paper and then losing them and then somebody would ask me if I could do something or if one of the kids could do something and I had no clue. This is how I knew I had to figure out a way to carry it all in my phone (and on my laptop).

I love things about it like how I can make events repeat, so like on the 15th of every month at 8 a.m. it used to remind me to sign up for the LEGO mini-build, which made me Mom of the Year once time and also Friend of the Year because I would remind my friends as well :-)

Google Calendar exists on my laptop, PC, iPhone, ANYWHERE. It is my reminder system for weekly (drag the trash to the curb), monthly (Universal Yums subscription is coming out of my PayPal account this day), and daily (this kid needs to do this math program today around this time) items, not to mention annual items like birthdays. Google Calendar restores my peace of mind by being my BRAIN. It stores all the things I need it to think about, including WHERE I need to be and even WHEN I need to leave to get there.

I love that it sends me reminders.

I love that you can move the time slots around if you get derailed, to the same day or a different one entirely.

I love that I can color code my work life and homeschool life and then color code each family member so I know, for instance, that Joel is at work from 3-6 on a certain day but that doesn't mean the rest of us are busy. When I look at the wall calendar, it just seems like everyone is busy.

I love that I can put every detail of an event in the Google Calendar and check it on the go. Instead of carrying around and storing a paper invitation, I just go to the event on the online calendar, click on location, and Google Maps takes me there.

Hope you enjoyed my life hack for adults like me with ADD and for EVERYONE ... makes it seem like I have it more together than I really do :-)

One more thing. I also like the Google Calendar because it gets me more realistic with time. It's really easy for me to lose time just going down rabbit holes but probably everybody does that more now with the Internet at our fingertips. When I look at the wall calendar and there are five things on there, they may not be in time order and also I don't know how long they will take. This makes my brain cry LOL ;-)

Check out this post about how to use Google Calendar for Homeschoolers.

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