It doesn’t matter what season of life you are in, kids or no kids, married or single, mom or dad, 9-5 life or homeschooling momma… this system will work for you! Today I am breaking down exactly how this fail proof system works in your life and what you need to do to get started today. Your time and memories with your family are far too precious to waste even another minute. Hurry now, get them earbuds in and let’s take a listen to today’s episode.
Listen below for the entire episode on The Systemize Your Life Podcast
It’s amazing what can happen when you show up for yourself, when you show up for your family when you put your priorities in the right spot, you get some systems in place, and you really truly start dedicating yourself to your fundamental needs, the things that are core in your life. You start managing your time well and you cut the crap. The way that you are going to do that, to really get your life back and stop feeling pulled in all directions is to get some time blocks in place. To figure out how you are going to manage your time and start being intentional with things. It’s what changed my life, it’s why I’m here now.
Get serious about what you do with your time
I had no idea this is what I was going to be teaching, I just knew there was something in my heart. I bought blogged biz high. I just got started, and that is when I started to refine my systems. I knew I wanted to teach moms what it was that I was doing, but I didn’t really know what it was going to be called or any of that. I just committed. That’s what I want you to do. I know for a fact that the way I was able to show up continually for myself, my family, my husband, my home, my business, my calling, for my extended family, was by getting really serious about what I was doing with my time. Knowing what to say yes to and what to say no to, and it’s all this 5 block system that I created.
If you have been around for any length of time, you may know that I have some free resources that are absolutely incredible. One of them is a time blocking roadmap. There is also the fundamental needs, and then one is an incredible workshop that is the definition of how to stop feeling pulled in all directions. This blog is focusing on the 5 block system, but the workshop actually goes really in-depth to all of it.
I didn’t know that this time block system would work for literally everyone. It works for my husband, it works for everyone that I have coached, women, men, 9-5ers, people with multiple jobs, people that have kids, don’t have kids, stay-at-home moms, homeschool moms, moms that are working outside the home, I use this system for everyone. That’s the beauty of it.
The 5 blocks
- Morning routine block
- AM block
- Work block
- PM block
- Night time routine block
What do you do with it? If you hold up your hand, you have 5 fingers, and you have 5 blocks. Of your 5 blocks, your thumb, middle finger, and pinky finger are all time for you and you alone that don’t include children. If you don’t have children, then it shouldn’t include demands. Those 3 blocks are without children or without major interruptions. Every other block is a block without children. Your AM block is full of children and all the things, then you go to your work block and all of that stops so you can focus on work. Work block finishes and you go back to focusing in your PM block on all the things, family, home, everything but not work. Then your night time routine and your morning routine are not supposed to be focusing on work, but some of you may have more limited time. Even I switch from these two modes from time to time, where sometimes I am doing work in my evening block when it should be my night time routine.
That is the beauty of this system. When you have these 5 blocks and you know what routines fit inside of them, you know how to shift things around very easily to meet the volatile and ever-changing demands that we have on us as work from home moms. I try and aim for the nighttime routine to be a peaceful and tech-free time in your day to be able to start and end your day with reflection, with gratitude, with prayer or meditation, so you can not burn out and you can be grounded. So you can know the direction you are headed and have peace and calm throughout the night when you sleep, and calm throughout the day when you are doing all the things. This is your 5 block system.
“This doesn’t tie you down to a specific structure. It gives you freedom! That’s why this is going to change your life. You’re now going to have freedom to know exactly what you’re doing with your time every single day.”
Fail proof system
Why I say it is fail proof is it doesn’t matter so much about the time stamps. That is what is so interesting about time blocking that people don’t understand. When you look it up all over the internet, no one teaches it the way I teach it. Because of the interesting dynamics of what I juggle with, of trying to figure out how to be all the things to all the people all the time, I realized I can’t possibly do all of those things, at the same time, all day long. I am a great multitasker, I think all moms are. I always joke that once we have children we grow extra appendages from all angles. You just suddenly know how to hold a thousand things in your hands and arms and open the door with your foot while you have a cup hanging from your mouth, cell phone in your ear.
We are always trying to figure out how to do all the things at once, so I just realized that this had to stop. I’m either dropping something, or something is missing from my brain space, I am just constantly on. I started experimenting with this system and it really is the ticket to your success. That is where I want you to get with this visualization. It’s not about the time stamps and how you are scheduling yourself all day long. It’s about what bucket, or block, am I in. You now have 5 modes that you operate in and within those 5 blocks, every other one is focused on home, family, marriage, or you are just focused on work.
The number of brain cells you will get back when you start operating in this mode is going to blow your mind. Everyone else around you is going to start operating on a completely different frequency when you start managing your day this way. So whenever you put everything of your work inside of your work block and you take it out of your AM and PM block, that frees up so much intention of you to be able to pour into cleaning your house, prepping your food, doing your todo list, working out, spending time with your children, spending time with your husband. Whatever those regular routines are, the things you need to get done over and over again. You will plug those in and create routines inside of those blocks.
Find the patterns and behaviors
If you sit down and you start collecting and monitoring patterns and behaviors, you will come to find that there are patterns and behaviors that are happening that you can consolidate into routines that happen in the same chunk of time. It will not only allow you to relax a bit but will save so much time. Every single day, I want you to do, within reason, the same thing inside these blocks. It doesn’t mean you are going to be rigid, stuffy, or strapped to time frames, it just means you are going to have clarity on how to flow through your morning.
Now you know what time to wake up in the morning and what time you need to be done with the morning routine because the ideal time to end your morning routine, is the same time that your children wake up in the morning. If you are waking up at the same time as your kids, you have already shot yourself in the foot for the day. Every single time. I don’t care how old your kids are. They want you to be present and available for them. They may not say it. They may not know how to articulate it. But there are different ways you can communicate that you are pouring into your children no matter what age they are. When they are little, of course, they need you. There are a million things they need. As they get older, they may not think that they need you, and they may not say they need you, but they do. It just looks different.
Be intentional so you can pour into your kids
If you can start your day, every day, pouring into yourself before your kids get up, then you know when your children are going to be awake and what they need from you. You could just give that a little time and attention first thing in the morning at any age, and you will see a huge shift in their interacting with you. I dare those of you that have teenagers and older to try this with them. Give them the opportunity to pour into them in the morning.
Are you still making breakfast for your kids? Are you still greeting them in the morning? Opening their curtains? Knocking on the door? Asking them if there is anything you can do for them before they get ready for school. How can you just make sure that you are prepared for your day in order to see them off as they go out into the world? Is there a mantra or prayer that you can start the day with?
These are the types of intentions I want you to bring to the table so you don’t feel like you are being pulled in the direction of your children because you feel guilty you are always just putting out fires with them, yet you are actually proactive and pouring into them instead. This goes for your children at any age.
When my kids were homeschooling, my AM block consisted of homeschooling and my kid’s morning routine. That is when breakfast happens, getting ready for the day, making their bed, homeschooling. When they aren’t homeschooling, the AM block is a very small sliver that happens before my kids go off to school. Then whenever I get back I have a longer AM block where I choose to get a fundamental need done for my home or family, and then I jump into my work block. Or I have a longer work block instead of doing a fundamental need. Then when the kids come home I dive right into work.
Create routines inside the 5 blocks
It just depends on what your life looks like. Then the PM block happens after your work block. That is when you start prepping and cooking dinner. That might even be the time your kids get home from school and then their after school routine starts during the PM block. Then the PM block goes all the way until the kids go to bed. You do the dinner routine, you might have a bit of family routine in there.
If your kids are much younger you will probably go straight from dinner to bath, books and bed. You will have that routine every night. You will have a time when lights go out at night that you will shoot for. Are you going to get that every night? No, I don’t. But that’s ok. Aim for it. Tonight lights are out 8:30 all around the house. Mom is done. Some nights that doesn’t happen and that is ok. It doesn’t mean that you failed. As I said, this is a fail-proof system. The blocks are there to ebb and flow with your life.
As soon as the PM block is done, you go into your night time routine. Night time routine is super easy, with no pressure. Put your phone away, connect with your husband, journal, read, maybe you have a beauty routine you do, whatever that looks like for you. I have a couple of different night time routines I do. It depends on how tired I am or if Blane is on shift or not. Or there are times that I will need to work in that nighttime routine block. Like today, I had zero people to help me take care of my kids and I didn’t want them on screen time all day, so instead of a massive work block, I chose to play games with my kids. I knew it was supposed to be my work block, but I moved it into my nighttime routine and I made that sacrifice. Do I do that all the time? No, that is a surefire way for me to burn out and my kids don’t deserve a burned-out mom and neither do yours.
That is the fail proof 5 block system. I want you to come inside of the Facebook group and every Monday I post a thread to do a paper planner audit because I want you to put these time blocks in your paper planner. There should be no gaps between the time blocks. From the time your eyes open until they close, you are time blocked. If you follow what I said, your paper planner will have a color for every single block mapped out touching each other from the beginning to the end of the day. Take a picture, post it in the thread, and I will give you feedback. We will talk about the routines that you want in there, we can talk about all of it. We can circle back and really get what you are learning implemented in your life.
Come on over to the The Systemize Your Life Academy and we can dive in even deeper to implement all that you are learning with an amazing community of other women with the same goals!
Frequently Asked Questions
What do I do when the holidays come?
Remember, holidays are meant to be enjoyable – not stressful! Although you won’t be able to follow your normal routines, you will have the opportunity to step back and consider the routines inside your blocks. Determine what is working and what needs to be altered. When it comes to day-to-day activities – start by determining your anchor routines and plan your day around these.