About a year ago, I received Getting Things Done as a gift. I enjoy learning about ways to be more productive, so it was actually a very thoughtful gift. The basic premise of the book is that by organizing your life and doing a brain dump as part of the process, you clear up your life and your mind, thus allowing you to not feel so chaotic and disorganized all the time. Mind you, I simplified that a bit. But I also had a 5 month old at the time (chaos and disorganization were my new normal at the time). So getting ANYTHING done, much less reading a book about it, was a challenge (and still often is). While I did begin reading the book, going so far as to stock up on office supplies to help me get organized, the effort was quickly abandoned as life took over.
Enter the Power of Moms and April Perry. I was already a follower of Power of Moms, a website and podcast devoted to ‘deliberate mothers.’ I love many of the articles and programs on this site, and was already starting a women’s Learning Circle via a Power of Moms program. So, when I heard about the STEP program, it seemed like a perfect fit for me. I first learned about the program on a Beyond the To Do List podcast, and quickly signed myself up.
STEP: LearnDoBecome uses many of the principles in Getting Things Done, while tailoring them to busy moms and breaking down the action items into bite-sized chunks. These are a bit more achievable for moms who may only get a few minutes here or there throughout their day (or week!). April and her husband Eric offer short video and audio tutorials, actions items for each lesson, and printable worksheets to help along the way. While I was eager to jump in, it has been a slow process for me. Depending on what was going on in my life, I might get a lot done for a week or two and then backtrack. But even if I let it slide for a bit, I felt like I was making baby steps toward being more organized in my daily life. I have been at it off and on for about four months and my chaos has gotten a little less chaotic, and a lot more manageable. By letting my husband know what I am up to, he is also able to help keep me organized (for example, I now have a designated inbox and action-item box in my office). He knows if a bill comes in, it needs to go in the action-item box in order for me to remember to pay it.
Basically, this program is for anyone who feels overwhelmed by the paper clutter and other piles in their house. It can also help you if you feel like you constantly have ideas running through your head but never are able to capture them in one place. If you are that person (as I was) who is often frantically searching for a W-2 at tax time, a favorite book to lend out to a friend, or a lab slip for the doctor’s office, this program is for you. To me it’s kind of like that old adage, a place for everything and everything in its place. This just takes it a step further and offers a place for everything, even if it is only an idea in your head at the moment. As you can see from the photos, it is a work in progress, but I am definitely moving in the right direction.
Thank you, April and Eric!
To learn more about the STEP program and to attend a free webinar, please click here.
Disclaimer: I am lucky enough to have a basement with another file cabinet, so that houses some of our less accessed files, thus causing there to be less clutter in our office.