For the longest time I couldn’t remember to hide our dog’s bed away in our bedroom each morning. The cats are tucked away at night but set free throughout the day. One of our cats loves to remind all of us that he was here first–the alpha pet, if you will–by peeing on the dog’s bed. Not awesome. So not awesome. As long as the bed isn’t out for Stuart to leave his legacy, there is no problem. But if I forget to put it away…it means an unhappy and avoidable chore of washing Bronx’s big bed outside, waiting for it to dry, cleaning and sanitizing the carpet inside, etc. Makes for a full day. 😛
I finally resolved this issure with this two part plan.
Post-It Notes Are My Friend
1) I put up post-it notes that say, “Got Bed?” in all the areas that I am, first thing in the morning.
Now, there is a catch! After awhile the post-it notes can become “invisible” to you and you might end up looking right through, around, and past them. So, ultimately I have found a part two for this mission.
2) Linking new tasks to other tasks or rituals I already have up and running = victory. For me, my routine is that I am not allowed to go downstairs in the morning until Bronx’s bed has been put away.
To accomplish this two part task you must stop what you are doing and think about what the problem is, how it can be resolved, where the sticky notes should go to start up the new routine and then finally what will be the long-term link you can mentally make to continue to remember to routinely do this task.
Some situations are harder to resolve than others. So, celebrate each one that gets resolved! Seriously! Repeat after me:
A Final Note (!) To Remember
Sometimes a change in routine, like a vacation, visitors, crisis, or a schedule change, can shake you out of your routines. You then need to reingage the sticky-notes until you can link it back onto something that will keep the routine going. The more gracious you are with yourself the easier it will be to get back on track!
Helping your family understand that there will be times that routines get totally erased due to changes in schedules, etc., will also help you feel less stress as you get back to your special routine again.
Hit an office supply store and have some fun picking out eye-catching sticky notes! You and your family will be glad you did!
What’s your story? Are you a lover of the little notes? Or do you find them annoying? What works best for you?
Add to the conversation! We’ll be glad you did. And please share the love.