Making a list and checking it twice
Hopefully you don’t have as many presents to sort out as Santa, but it’s possible you’re feeling as if the number of things you need to do this month is longer than his naughty and nice lists combined. Whether you’re wondering how you’re going to get everything done before the big day or sitting back comfortably because you started months ago, it’s still a good idea take a little time to make a list this week – before time starts fast forwarding!
There’s nothing worse than forgetting a big thing you really wanted to do because you were trying to do too much and got flustered. Lists are a great way to help you capture the tasks whirling around in your mind so everything you want to get done is in one place and you can plan what you’re going to do and when.
Even though you probably feel like you haven’t got time to sit and plan, an hour this week is better than lots of wasted time the week before Christmas. Once it’s all on paper you’ll feel calmer and be ready for the festivities to run smoothly.
1. Write down all the tasks that are currently crowding through your head on a piece of paper – don’t worry about the order, who is going to do it or when it needs to be done, just get it written down
2. Ask others at home if they can think of things that need doing and add it to the list. Now, review your list and check it includes
- Planning your Christmas menu (we’ll be talking about Festive Food from 15 December, if you want to get started now though you can use our 7 day meal planner (1884 downloads) to help).
- Food you need to buy
- Your Christmas present list
- Food allergies or dislikes for the people coming to Christmas dinner or if you need to tell someone about food you can’t eat
- Any people you need presents for or specific items you want to buy. Need inspiration? Then our web article next week will have a few ideas to help you, you could also check out our list of gifts with less packaging
- Buying a couple of extra general presents that could be given to people you didn’t expect to get gifts from (wine, book tokens and department store vouchers etc which could be given to anyone)
- Putting together a plan for cooking Christmas dinner
- Making sure you’ve lots of plastic containers to store opened packets of food and for your leftovers.
- If you’ve got similar tasks on the list group them together so you’re reminded to do similar things at the same time, work out when the things need to be done and write a new list so you can easily see what else needs to be done and when.
3. Put your list somewhere you’re going to see it every day – the front of the fridge or the back of the bathroom door might work for you!
4. We spend a lot of extra money on last minute shopping, for things we’ve already bought or didn’t really need. There aren’t many people who stick completely to a list but having one can save you time and money.
Save money – If you know what you want to buy you’ll not feel as tempted by the special offers or buy extra things you don’t actually need or already have.
Save time – You’re unlikely to forget a key item and rush out for it when the shops are really busy with everyone else doing their last minute shopping.
Save the environment – Sticking to your list will reduce the amount of extra stuff you have leftover which may end up in the bin and the number of trips you need to make to the shops.