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How I Organized My Whole Life

Love this simple, yet effective method for organizing every area of your life! Click over to the post to snag the cute printable!

I was getting frustrated. Every month I would set goals, and every month it seemed like I was coming up short in the same areas. I wasn’t reading enough, working out enough, doing my devotions enough, getting enough projects done, etc. I just couldn’t seem to find the time. But I felt like I was constantly busy, so where was all of my time going?

Then one day it dawned on me: the problem was that I didn’t have a plan for how I was going to accomplish my goals. I just made them and hoped I’d be able to get around to them “sometime.” I knew that if I wanted to put a dent in my to-do list, I had to make a plan of action.

How I Organized My Whole Life

I had heard of this little thing called “time blocking” before, but I was hesitant to try it. Time blocking is like a to-do list on steroids. Instead of just making a list of everything you’d like to get done in a day, you plan out exactly when you’re going to work on each task.

The thought of this was definitely intimidating. I have to plan out every hour of my day? What if something unexpected pops up? What if I mess up the schedule? Then I’ll be even more stressed out about everything!  Nonetheless, I decided to give it a try.

I even made a cute little organized sheet because everything is better when it’s pretty. [And I’m sharing it with you as a FREE printable! You can see all 50+ free printables that we offer on the blog in our library of organizing printables!]

This simple strategy helped me organize my whole life, be more productive, and make the most of my time! Click over to the post for the details and a cute printable!

{Click Here for FREE Printable!}

Here’s how I use it: either the night before or first thing in the morning, I start by filling in the “To Do List,” (I break this part down into “Home,” “Blog,” and “Kids” categories.) “To Contact,” and “To Buy” sections.

Then I look at the time blocking part of the sheet. I enter in any activities we have planned for the day– play dates, swimming lessons, meetings, etc.

After those times are blocked off, I schedule the items from my other sections around what we have going on for the day. My end result will look something like this:

This simple strategy helped me organize my whole life, be more productive, and make the most of my time! Click over to the post for the details and a cute printable!

The key is that everything in your “To Do/Buy/Contact” sections should end up somewhere in your time-blocked schedule. Don’t forget to add in things like getting showered and ready for the day, drive time, meal prep time, etc.

What surprised me about this system was that it gave me so much peace of mind.

Previously, I would be in the middle of a task, remember something I had to do, leave task #1 half finished so I can do task #2, maybe get back to task #1 unless I think of a third thing I need to be doing…and so on.

Now if I’m doing the dishes and remember that I have to call and schedule a doctor’s appointment, I have it written in on my sheet later in the day, so I know it will be taken care of then. I can complete the task at hand without interruption.

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All that being said, do I follow my time blocked schedule to a “T” every day? Almost never. But I’m always able to refer to it to know what I’ll have to sacrifice if I decide to go off course.

For example, if I’m in the middle of writing a blog post, but I’m supposed to move on to working out, is it worth it to do a shorter work out so I can finish my post? Or is there a way I can rework a later activity?

I am always sure to schedule in some “buffer” time in case a task takes longer than expected. (In the example above, I scheduled a whole hour for breakfast and lunch, but I know it won’t really take that long, so I can use the extra time to make up something if I’ve gotten behind.)

Or if I realize I’m not going to be able to complete everything on my list, I can choose which item(s) can wait until the next day.

Since I’ve started time blocking, I feel like I’m getting way more accomplished. I’m not tempted to linger as long on social media because I know I only have a set amount of time to finish a task.

I don’t run aimlessly from thing to thing since I have each item scheduled into my day. It’s all about working smarter, not harder!

This simple strategy helped me organize my whole life, be more productive, and make the most of my time! Click over to the post for the details and a cute printable!

I know everyone’s brains work differently and an organizational system that works perfectly for one person may be a bust for someone else.

If you haven’t tried time blocking yet, though, I would encourage you to give it a try and see if you feel more productive. I know it has made a world of difference for me!

What tips do you have for organizing your time? Has time blocking worked for you?

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179 Comments

  1. I’m going to try your idea! I feel like I’m not getting anything accomplished this summer and I could use time management help. Thank you for sharing.

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Susan! I hope it works well for you! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

      1. hii im trying to print the free printables but it is asking me to input a password … nothing is working please help.

        1. justagirlabby says:

          Can you shoot us an email at hello {at} justagirlandherblog {dot} com and we can help you out with that? Thanks!

          ~Abby =)

  2. I actually just started this! So far its working great! I love this printable! So stinkin cute! 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Jessi! Good for you! My hubby has been doing it for a while {not with a cute printable, so probably not nearly as effective ;)} and swears by it, so I decided to join in and I love it! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

      1. Amy Payne says:

        This is the best daily planning printable I have ever found! Thank you soooo much – it has changed my life. I am a stay-at-home previous doctor and mom of 4, and you have so many great printables. Again, THANK YOU!:)

        1. Abby Lawson says:

          Yay! Love to hear that, Amy! So glad they have been helpful for you. Hope you’re having an awesome week! <3

          ~Abby =)

  3. Hi Abby – I heart organization! And I love making lists too. Is it me or does anyone else when they do something NOT on the list… add it to the list just to cross it off???? Hugs, Holly

    1. abbylawson says:

      I totally do that! And sometimes I initiate list-making because I’ve done some things I want to cross off, lol! List makers of the world unite! 😉 Thanks so much for stopping by, Holly! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

    2. Josephine says:

      Yes me! I add things not on the list that come up., because it makes me feel like I accomplished other things that needed to be done. Nice to know I am not the only one.

  4. Carrie From Carrie This Home says:

    I struggle with the same thing! Tons of stuff on my to-do list but no plan as to how to get it done! I’ll have to try out the printable! Would you mind to share this on my blog hop? I’d really appreciate it! Stopping by from Give Me The Goods Monday. Have a great week Abby!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much for the invite, Carrie! I linked up! Let me know how you like time blocking if you decide to try it. Have a great week, friend!

      ~Abby =)

  5. I really do like this idea, I’m one of those who flit from task to task without really finishing the first one! And also, guilty of being online way too much to get things done. Thanks for sharing!

    1. abbylawson says:

      I am also a “flitter”! This has definitely helped to reign me in! Thanks for stopping by, Kim! Have a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  6. April Hoff says:

    Wow! Love this! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, April! Hope your week is going well!

      ~Abby =)

  7. Kristin @ bliss-athome.com says:

    I love organizing everything! Great list!! xo Kristin

    1. abbylawson says:

      Agreed. I always say organizing is my therapy, lol. 😀 Thanks for stopping by, Kristin! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  8. Katey Thompson says:

    I need to try this! Thank you for my motivation for the day!

    1. abbylawson says:

      I hope it works for you, Katey! Thanks so much for visiting!

      ~Abby =)

  9. I loved your line when you admitted that you hardly ever follow your daily time line (keepin it real, right?!) but that it still helps to keep you focused and feeling like you accomplish more than when you didn’t do this! Very smart idea, girlie!! Have a great week!~~Ang

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Angela! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  10. Kirsten @ One Tough Mother says:

    This is fabulous! I, too, feel very overwhelmed and rarely get through my extensive to-do list each day. Part of it is that I just take on too much, but a big part of it is that I just get so scatterbrained that I go off track. I’m going to have to give this a shot – thanks for the tips and the printable!

    1. abbylawson says:

      I do the same thing–always biting off more than I can chew! This has definitely helped, though! Let me know if you give it a try! Have a great week, Kirsten!

      ~Abby =)

  11. I love this! I used to get so much accomplished when I used to write everything down that I had to do that day (not sure why I move away from this). Thinking I’m going to have to start doing this again.
    Thanks for the push and the printable

    1. abbylawson says:

      Yes, for some reason writing things down is huge for me as well. Whatever works, right?! Thanks so much for stopping by, Ricki! Have a wonderful day!

      ~Abby =)

  12. Selene Galindo says:

    This is great! That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling! I will try this system out, thanks!
    Selene @ Restoration Beauty

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Selene! I hope it works for you! Have a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  13. LOVE This idea! Thanks for the free printable and the idea on how to utilize it. I’ve been having the same problems with time management, especially this summer. Can’t wait to try it out!

    1. abbylawson says:

      I hope it works for you, Michelle! Have a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  14. I love that you separate your to dos for the day into categories. I think I really need to do that!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Debra! I’m so glad you stopped by! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  15. Hi,
    Great post and many thanks for the printable!
    I’m a flit-here-and-there person. Nothing completely finished. I’d heard about something else as well. Time youself. Set up the oven timer or a baking timer even an alarm clock. When the alarm goes you jump two feet into the air and then your concentration is gone. Makes it easier to leave the task you’re working on. You may not be finished with that task but you’ve certainly made inroads. I would need the alarm as I’m an expert at, “Just another five minutes!”
    Hope this will also help for you.
    Cathy

    1. abbylawson says:

      Love that idea, Cathy! I always time my kids to try to get them to pick up faster, but I never thought to time myself! 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing–have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  16. What a great idea – it really is necessary to keep all of your ducks in a row – I had to make one to keep my house/laundry in order and it helped tremendously, but this takes it an extra step. I will have to try this! Thanks for sharing – I’m your newest follower! Hope you will drop by and follow me too!
    Chris {aka Freckle Face Girl}

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Chris! Heading over to check out your blog now!

      ~Abby =)

  17. Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom says:

    And I thought I was organized. Wow! Impressive.

    Wishing you a lovely week.
    xoxo

    1. abbylawson says:

      With a name like “the deliberate mom”, I’m sure you are organized! 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  18. Samantha @ Five Heart Home says:

    This makes so much sense, Abby! I fit to a T your description of someone who can’t finish one task before becoming distracted by/moving on to the next thing. Maybe time blocking is the answer…though I’m pretty sure my husband will think I’ve gone off the deep end if he sees my day scheduled out by the hour! 😉

    1. abbylawson says:

      Lol! My hubby has actually been doing it way longer than me {not with a cute printable, though, so probably not nearly as effective ;)}, so he can’t call me crazy for this one. {Though he does for many other things, haha!} Hope you’re having a wonderful week, Samantha!

      ~Abby =)

  19. Krista thehappyhousie says:

    Great strategy Abby! I think the good think about it would be that you could keep yourself accountable for ‘ending’ tasks that can just stretch on and on (like blog stuff can) if you have other tasks blocked ‘in’… some things are never ending and if you are like me and want to ‘finish’ you can get carried away and leave out other important things!! I might just have to give it a try!!

    1. abbylawson says:

      That is so true! I could work on blog stuff 24/7 and still not feel “done,” so this helps with that for sure. Also reading…I’m always thinking, “Just one more chapter!!” 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  20. Great idea…now to find the motivation!

    1. abbylawson says:

      You can do it, Melissa! It is seriously so helpful! 🙂 Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  21. You had me at “organize”. 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      It must be genetic! Thanks, mom! 😉

      ~Abby =)

  22. Whew! I’m in the process of trying to organize my life! Thanks for the resources!

    Allison

    1. abbylawson says:

      Good luck with all of your organization projects, Allison! Thanks so much for stopping by!

      ~Abby =)

  23. Saw you on BFOL linkup. I’ve been time blocking for a while now and I love it. Even if I dont’ finish a task, it feels good to say I at least gave it 45 minutes of my time. The things I don’t finish today, I immediately put in the next days list so they don’t get forgotten. Another thing I do is break down big tasks by day. For example, tending the yardwork, I have one section assigned each day. Front yard on Monday, side of house on Tuesday, etc. So I’m not spending hours and hours in the yard, yet by the end of the week, it’s all gotten done. Hope the method works for you!

    1. abbylawson says:

      I love your take on time blocking, Jill! Thanks for sharing how it works for you! I’m so glad you popped by from BFOL. Have a wonderful day!

      ~Abby =)

  24. Gabrielle says:

    Pinned it, printing it, using it! This is pretty fabulous! Found you on BFOL.

    1. abbylawson says:

      Yay! I hope it works well for you too, Gabrielle! Thanks for popping over from BFOL!

      ~Abby =)

  25. Consie @ Atop Serenity Hill says:

    Hi Abby, I have used the time blocks in the past and they worked great! Unfortunately, I fell out of the habit. Thanks for the printable! I am going to give it another go.

    1. abbylawson says:

      Good luck with your second go-round! Thanks so much for stopping by, Consie!

      ~Abby =)

  26. Cheryl @ My Cup Runneth Over says:

    Hi Abby! I just wanted to say THANKS! I printed this out and tried it for my workday / home chores and it has been so successful!! I was always finding myself writing a list, but adding the block of time in which to complete that task is genius! Thanks for helping me “cross off” a better way to get things done!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Yay!!! I’m so glad you had success with it, Cheryl! Hooray for productivity, lol!

      ~Abby =)

  27. What a great idea. Since I have started my blog I have noticed I get distracted very easily as well. I will be trying this I know it won’t hurt any. I really like your printable as well. I can completely understand how frustrating it is to make the goals and not get much accomplished because there is no direction in place hope this helps me as much as it has helped you.

    1. abbylawson says:

      I hope it works well for you, Allie! It really has done wonders for me. Thanks for reading!

      ~Abby =)

  28. Christy@Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer says:

    This is a great idea! You an easily see how your day can be very quickly filled up…I usually make a daily list of what I want to accomplish and I find that just by writing tasks down, they get done. Thanks for sharing 🙂
    XO,
    Christy

    1. abbylawson says:

      You are so right, Christy–for some reason writing it down seems to have magical powers to make things happen, lol! Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

      ~Abby =)

  29. Wow! I love that printable! I’m going to pin it so I can print a copy off later! Great idea, and thanks so much for sharing- I know I need a little motivation these days to stay organized!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Audra! Good luck with your quest for organization!

      ~Abby =)

  30. I’m so glad you posted this…I am going to try it! I am getting increasingly frustrated with how little I seem to accomplish…and there really is no need for it. Working smarter, not harder…I need to learn that! I will be trying this method to see if it will work for me.

    I found you via a linky party – don’t remember which one, lol! – but I am now following you via bloglovin’! I’m excited to browse through your other posts! =)

    1. abbylawson says:

      Yay! Let me know how it works for you! Thanks for popping over from the link party…whichever one it was! 😉

      ~Abby =)

  31. rainonatinroof01 says:

    Oh my goodness, Abby! That planner is a genius! Printing! That would be so helpful! Thanks for sharing and linking up at Give Me the Goods Monday! Jenna @ Rain on a Tin Roof

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Jenna! And thank you for hosting such a great party! Have fun on vacation!!

      ~Abby =)

  32. Nancy @ Artsy Chicks Rule says:

    Awesome Abby!! I so need some help with organization (I might have mentioned that before! 😉 )…I’m going to have to print and give it a try!
    Nancy

    1. abbylawson says:

      I hope it works for you, Nancy! Have a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

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  34. Thanks for sharing! It was good to have a reminder to use my daily diary!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Jess! Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

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  36. Bethany Wright Dearden says:

    I really need to do this. I am the same way, “No time!” There IS time, I just have to get organized, and get myself a system! Thanks so much for this printable, hopefully I can get organized, too!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Bethany! I hope it works well for you! Have a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

  37. femmefrugality says:

    I kind of do this; if the kids give me five seconds I look at my to-do list and try to cross something off. Works pretty well for me! Though I do tend to leave unfun things like sorting the papers on the kitchen counter till last…so they never get done….

    1. abbylawson says:

      The kids giving you 5 minutes thing is key. Doesn’t always happen around here either, but we make it work! I also leave the unfun things until last. I’ve started trying to suck it up and do something not so fun first thing in the morning and that helps when I actually stick to it! Hope you’re having a great day, friend!

      ~Abby =)

  38. I always do better when I have some sort of to do list. I get less distracted, but I have to make sure it isn’t too long or I feel guilty if I don’t get everything accomplished.

    1. abbylawson says:

      I hear ya! Lists are definitely key for me too. Otherwise I tend to wander around from thing to thing too much. Hope you’re having a great week, Heidi!

      ~Abby =)

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  41. Thank you so much for sharing this cute printable!! I am always looking for new ways to organize my life and this is perfect!! I’m your newest follower. Thanks for again!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Megan! I hope it’s helpful! Popping over to check out your blog now!

      ~Abby =)

  42. Trish @ Uncommon Designs says:

    This is awesome… I want to run upstairs right now and print one off for today!! Thanks so much for sharing this week at Monday Funday! Have an amazing week!

    Take care,

    Trish

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thank you! Let me know if it works for you! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

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    1. abbylawson says:

      Lol! Thanks so much, Allyson! I’m flattered! Hope you’re having a great week!

      ~Abby =)

  44. Great idea! I SO need to do this. With a 14 month old baby in the house, it is way too easy to get distracted with a million different things and then at the end of the day it seems I have gotten nothing accomplished! Thanks for the tip…I am going to try it out! 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Jessica! The toddler years are rough on productivity! My two year old is still making life interesting in that area, lol! Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

  45. robin lorraine williamson says:

    Yes, I find a list helps a lot haven’t done time blocking will give it a try. I’m lorraine following via google+

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by, Lorraine! Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

  46. Could someone PLEASE help me print the adorable printable? I really want to try time blocking and of course want to use this printable. I can’t figure out how to print from Pinterest on my iPad and when I try on my computer it shuts down Internet explorer. Thanks!

    1. After using google chrome I was able to print it!

      1. abbylawson says:

        Yay! I’m so glad it worked, Connie! Happy time blocking! 😉

        ~Abby =)

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  48. Bethany the ngnrdgrl says:

    Great ideas here! I actually use this system at work. I write out a to do list and I block out time to work on each task/project on my outlook calendar. I often fill out the whole week so I can understand how busy or not busy I am. This way I can either ask for more work or let people know I have a ton to do when they want to give me more. It also helps me fill out my time card at the end of the week.

    Sounds like this system is working for you, since you were super successful with your goals this month. And cute printable! Keep it up!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thank you, friend! I would think that engineers would be totally on top of the time blocking thing. I am married to the son of an engineer who is a chip off the old block and he swears by time blocking too! Have a wonderful weekend, Bethany!

      ~Abby =)

  49. Wow!! I just popped over from I Heart Organizing’s link party and I am loving your blog already!! Time management is soo important yet can be so difficult! I have tried time blocking before but it makes me anxious/overwhelmed. I love the way your printable is organized and will definitely give it a try, thanks so much for sharing!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks for hopping over from I Heart Organizing, Lyndsey! I always thought time blocking would make me anxious, too, but for some reason it puts me at ease knowing that I have a plan for executing my to-do list! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

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  53. Would you ever be willing to do a tutorial on how to create your own organization printables, like those you share above?

    1. abbylawson says:

      Ooh just when I thought I had covered all of the bases with graphics tutorials, this is a great idea for another one! I will have to put one together sometime, and I’ll let you know when I do! Thanks, Gina!

      ~Abby =)

  54. Doc @ The Saga of Glitter McNabb says:

    Please Lord, please, please, *please* let this gorgeous printable help me to get organised so I can finally move to the new/old house!

    (What a lovely blog you have, Miss Abby…glad I ran into it just now! May God bless you and your family 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      Lol! Thank you so much, Doc! Good luck with the move! I hope the printable helps!

      ~Abby =)

  55. Kaya Lien says:

    Enjoyed some posts this am. Hear of you through Tim Challies.

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thank you so much, Kaya! I’m so glad you stopped by! Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  56. Lauren @ The Thinking Closet says:

    Okay, so after seeing this printable IN ACTION at FL BLOG CON ’13 with my buddy Brianne, I’m here to print some copies off for myself! I’m just feeling overwhelmed with my daily tasks and finding I’m not as productive as I could be…so I think breaking my day down into hourly increments is exactly what I need. Thanks for being so generous and sharing this with us fo’ free! Me and my scatter-brained self thank you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yay!! Hope you find it helpful, friend! Sometimes blogland really does feel so small with all of the connections that we make! Love that! Hope you’re having a great day!

      ~Abby =)

  57. I am SO in love with this blog! Thank you for all the tips and printables! Will be printing and adding these to my new planner and daily schedule 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Miss Kelly, you just made my day! Thank you so much for your sweet words! Happy planning! Hope you have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

      1. Sharing the link to this blog on my blog! Hope you don’t mind 🙂

        1. justagirlabby says:

          Thank you so much for sharing, Kelly! Happy planning! 😀

          ~Abby =)

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  59. A friend just sent me your page, thank you for posting this! I’m normally very good at planning my time and achieving my goals (good old German stereotypes kicking in), but recently I’ve had some trouble getting motivated for university things etc. So I’m giving this a try this week to see if it works for me, it looks like a great idea – kind of a condensed version of what I normally do on different sheets of paper anyway 😉

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for popping over, Samantha! I hope the printable is helpful for you! Happy planning!

      ~Abby =)

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  61. Talk about serendipity. I was just thinking about allocating my daily “things to do” lists with actual times throughout the day and then just happened upon this posting. Thanks-can’t wait to try it. btw I also read your post about your story re: breast cancer. I feel for you, that someone so young must deal with this. Best to you and your family

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yay! I’m so glad you found me! Good luck with your planning! And thank you so much for your words of encouragement, too– it really means a lot!

      ~Abby =)

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  63. Just read one of your posts as a guest on another site, then I stumbled into your blog post on organizing your day. I am enjoying all of the easy to follow, wise directions. Thanks

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for stopping by, Lisa! I’m so glad to “meet” you! 😀 Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

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  65. I’m so happy I found your blog! It’s helping me a lot to organize my life! Also, I loved the tutorial on how to create my own printables that I received in your Newsletter! Thank you so much for sharing it!

    xx
    Julia

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yay! Thank you so much for your sweet words, Julia! I’m so glad my blog has been helpful for you! Hope you have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  66. Holy Cow! I want to be you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Lol! Most of the time what I plan out so neatly on paper looks much crazier in real life, believe me! But it helps to have a plan! Have a wonderful week, Becky!

      ~Abby =)

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  69. I’ve been doing makeshift time blocking for a long time, just making lists everyday of what I’m going to do when, but I like the idea of having it organized like this. Question of logistics – do you print a new sheet everyday or do you have a gazillion printed already? Have you thought about doing it digitally somehow? I feel like I waste so much paper on these lists!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Hi, Shelley! Thanks so much for visiting my blog! I usually print a bunch at a time and keep them in a binder and grab them when I need them. I hear you on the paper thing! I have tried digital lists (I’m currently trying to train myself to use Wunderlist), but I always seem to come back to paper! Call me old fashioned! 🙂 Hope you have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

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  71. I just discovered your blog about a month ago and have been using your Goal charts for kids for the past three weeks for my 8 year old boys- and our morning and nighttime routines have been streamlined because of it. Less nagging and yelling on my part and a great sense of accomplishment for the kids when they get to cross things off. This has been working so well I thought I needed something similar because I have great intentions every morning but tend to go from one half finshed task to the next and by the end of the day feel like I’ve wasted half my day. So, all that to say, I’m so thankful I discovered your blog and I’m so grateful for your organizational wisdom (which does not come naturally to me!) and your willingness to share what works for you via these free printables. Many thanks!! =)

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Dana! Your sweet comment totally made my day! Thank you so much! I’m so glad your boys are liking the goal charts. And girl, you totally just described me. I am the queen of leaving something half finished and moving on to something else. That’s why I make so many printables– to keep myself in line, lol! Thanks so much for visiting my blog! Have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

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  76. I was looking for some free printables on pintrest and found your blog. Wow as I am finding some great ones i was amazed at I see so much of myself in you, I not were you are at but i been doing some of thes things my self and did not know i was doing them like the block time. Any way thank you for sharing all the stuff you do .

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thank you so much for visiting my blog, Dana! Yay for time blocking! I don’t know where I’d be without it! Hope you have a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  77. Thanks so much for the freebie!! I seem to never get stuff done that I have listed in my head to do. I am hoping this will inspire me to do better if it is written down.

  78. Thanks for this! I’ve tried making such daily organizing charts before, but they’ve never worked for long. Too complicated, maybe? This one seems simple and streamlined, yet includes everything on one page. Thanks, again. Hope you’re feeling well 🙂

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Hooray! Hope it helps, Michelle! I love the time blocking method. Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  79. Laura May says:

    Great stuff!
    I use timeblocking in my job and it has saved me going having to-do-list after to-do list, many scraps of paper and post-it notes everywhere!
    I use my Outlook calendar on the computer rather than a paper version, and instead of only putting in actual meetings, I block out time for projects and different things I need to remember to do.
    I sit down at the end of each week and plan out and timeblock the following week,

    It really helps to know that I have planned enough time to get everything done, and I can relax at evenings and weekends, knowing that even if I have a big project on, I’ve already allotted blocks of time for it.
    Colour coding takes it to the next level, too!

    I agree about the buffer time too! Buffer time is THE most important bit! Something unexpected ALWAYS comes up at work, and more usually it’s last-minute and mega-urgent, so having buffer time scheduled in, means that you can get it done without forfeiting other tasks, and without having to stress or work late.

    I can see how a paper version would work at home too. And especially for stay-at-home parents with kids, you need some way of keeping on top of everything!

    I am still looking for a way of organising home life (currently just me and hubby -no kids yet) and we struggle to stay on top of things with busy jobs, and actively involved at our local church. I’m definitely going to try this out – might need to have “his n hers” versions!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Oooh color coding?! I love it! I am such a pen and paper girl, but sometimes I think I might just have to get over that and use a digital version. Having everything synced between my computer and phone would be especially helpful. We shall see! Hope you’re having a wonderful day, Laura!

      ~Abby =)

  80. I love your printables, and I am definitely going to give this a try! I can’t seem to get anything done the way I do things now, so hopefully I can make this work with my mind and lifestyle.

    I did notice you have two printables in your blog – one is “How I Spent My Time” and the other being “Planning My Day.” Do you use the two of these together every day in your own notebook, or did you start out with one and move to the other?

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Thanks, Mina! I mostly use the “Planning My Day” one. Sometimes I’ll get into ruts where I find myself wasting a bunch of time day after day no matter how closely I plan my schedule, so that’s when I pull out the “How I Spent My Time” one to track my time and hold myself accountable. It just helps me adjust my mindset a little bit. Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

      ~Abby =)

  81. I love this system. I used it a few years ago and accomplished more than I ever had. I am trying to launch it again, my problem is interruptions from other people/outside sources, which cause me to leave most things undone during the day.
    The agenda I created looks a lot like yours!

  82. Lydia @ Thrifty Frugal Mom says:

    This is such an awesome tip! I ALWAYS am more productive when I do this….but for some reason, I’ll do it for a couple of days and then fall off the bandwagon. I love your printable though and wonder if I used it if I’d actually end up sticking with this method. We shall see! 🙂

  83. Came accross your blog on pinterest while looking for organisation tips and hints that were easy. Paperwork and I are just not friends!!!! So i decided that there has to be a less torturous way to get things done and organised. You have given me a whole range of ideas, that i want to take leave to get things done. I work full time, study in the evenings and am partner to an amazing man, who does a lot for me.
    So I started a binder, bought a diary that I actually liked and am slowly tackling things bit by bit.

  84. Well, I can why this was a top post of yours! I tried this once for the school day (I homeschool my children) but it didn’t work very well- however, that was two or three years ago and it mostly didn’t work well because the KIDS didn’t do well with it- I never really considered JUST doing it for ME. I might give this a shot…. interesting!!

  85. O MY GOD. I LOVE YOU. THIS IS A GODSEND.

  86. What a great idea! Thanks for sharing the printable and I like the filled in example. This is exactly what i need, I can’t wait to print this out and get started.

  87. I can’t believe I only just found this blog now. The more I think about this template the more I need it. I just had an idea. I am going to draw it on a whiteboard so that I can reuse it every day 🙂

  88. Iris Kirkland says:

    This is cool. I literally started doing this on my iPhone with my reminders app. When it’s time to do something it pops up. It’s colored coded. And if you don’t accomplish a goal the number of goals sit on the app as a reminder. I do love organizing my goals this way. I just get so much done. Love your post!

  89. Amber Colour Decor says:

    Great post and will certainly try this as my life is feeling slightly unorganised at the moment and need to stick to a proper plan.

  90. Wow, I didn’t know there was a name for this! I started doing this on my own a while ago, but was even more specific with the timing than on your printable. Like you, I rarely followed it exactly. In fact, I don’t think I ever followed it exactly! I’m not doing it really anymore, but it was exhilarating when I was! With the start of the school year, it’s a lot harder to stay on track. Anywho, I thought it was cool that there’s actually a name for this, and that I’m not the only one who’s done it. Also, I never scheduled my whole day; I think the highest I went was like 3:00 in the afternoon, but I never made it past like 11:00. Oh well. 🙂

  91. I am so excited to start your organizing techniques i can still use the binders in 2015 right they seem to work better for me,,, my phone loses things on me

  92. DIY Just Cuz Team says:

    Abby! I’ve referred to this post all year round (and printed out your printable a few times now). Because we love it so much we featured it in our Mega Christmas Guide – under the section prepping for the new year. What better time to get organized than right before a BRAND new year! If you’d like to see it, here it is! https://www.diyjustcuz.com/the-mega-christmas-guide/

  93. Valerie Davis says:

    I really like this printable and started using it today. Would it be possible to add two things? A place to write the date, since I will be printing one daily, and blank checkboxes in the To Do, To Contact and To Buy sections? There is such satisfaction in checking off those boxes!

    I have enjoyed reading your blog! I have been using your grocery list for several weeks, and I love it! Thanks for producing beautiful, useful tools!

  94. Chelsea Wolf says:

    Thanks for sharing, Abby! I’ve completed the first step and printed a few sheets…now I just need to remember to grab them off the printer and put them to work!

  95. Hello Abby 🙂
    Great post 🙂 So many, many good and easy to implement tips 🙂

    I do something similar to you 🙂 I also plan my daily do’s to create my action plan. However to do that I use an online kanban board 🙂 It’s really simple way to visualize my workflow, see my whole work in one big picture on the one simple board. I use (www.kanbanery.com). Why it works better for me? I was always loosing all of my cards where I wrote down my goals and planned tasks. Here, on my kanban board it is impossible 🙂

  96. Brenda Benefield says:

    Abby,
    Are you from Pa. I see the address McMurray Pa. Right around where I was born and raised, Bethel Park, but now live in Florida.

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yes, we live in the South Hills! We love it! 🙂

      ~Abby =)

  97. This is lovely! I do this too!! Just started reading your blog and I’m excited to read more.
    About time blocking, I found a lovely free app that also does this called “Accomplish” (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.accomplish ) I like that it let’s me move items around too in case I need to — though it’s also good to just stick with it! (I’m not affiliated or anything just though to share 🙂 )
    Blessings xx

    1. justagirlabby says:

      I’ll have to check it out! Thanks so much!

      ~Abby =)

  98. OMG!! Love all these ideas but the thought of even knowing how or where to begin is just overwhelming to me. I definitely need HELP!!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      So glad they were helpful, Tessa! The hardest part is getting started! Maybe start with something small and work your way up! Even small changes can make a big difference!

      ~Abby =)

  99. How many “to-do” lists I had made and threw out! Sometimes they were helpful, but most of the times they were not. I will give a try to time blocking approach starting tomorrow! Monday – is a great day to start!))) Thank you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Yay! Hope it’s helpful for you, Nadia!

      ~Abby =)

  100. Saarah Siddiki says:

    Hello! My name is Saarah! I am in high school and I love organizing! I just want to say that everything I have looked at has helped me so much in life so far! I was wondering how you organize all your belongings? I’m trying to get rid of things I don’t need/declutter my bedroom! And I am so stressed out because I don’t know where to set stuff aside so I can worry about it later! I also have so much homework these days so if you could help me by posting some school related printables that would be SO helpful! Thanks and I HEART YOU AND THE HELP + ORGANIZATION TIPS

  101. Quanda Allen says:

    Abby, I am so inspired by you and your blog. I’m just starting out and I find myself loving your blog for all of its content, not just blogging information. I am really beginning to understand the need to deliver value to people’s lives in a meaningful way, not just report on projects. Thank you!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Awesome! So glad you’re enjoying it, Quanda! Hope you’re having an awesome week!

      ~Abby =)

  102. Cathy M. Smart says:

    Great article, Thanks for sharing it. All ideas are very interesting.

  103. I want to try this out!! I need so much help managing time it is not funny any longer! With 3 kids involved in everything with school and outside of school, a Husband who’s hours are changing every week and still trying to find time to get things together and somehow figure out how to fit a job into our life for me, well let’s say it is a bit hectic! Any ideas you have to help I will gladly try!!

    1. justagirlabby says:

      Life can definitely feel crazy sometimes, right?! Time blocking has been a huge help to me with our own busy kiddos and running a business! I hope it will be helpful for you too!!

      ~Abby =)

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