Ask the Organizer is a segment that I had on my Help-Organize-Life.com website where anyone could ask me their organizing questions. This is a reprint from the original article from 2011.Q: I am a mother to 5 great kids and have a very hard working husband. Currently I’m going back to school for nursing and I’m trying to balance everything but I feel as if I’m going to fall apart. I think I’m already at that point. We have a construction business and I’m a stay at home mom and I need help trying to make everything work. I just finished with a certified nursing assistant program that is a prerequisite for the nursing program I’m trying to get into and I’m trying to update all the bills that need to be paid. Unfortunately money doesn’t come in as regular as I’d like so I’m in the midst of trying to get everything caught up. I tried using the flylady system and it is good. But they send you so many emails I end up ignoring most of them and losing steam. Can you help me to start simple? I love being in school because it forces me to get everything done but I don’t think it always turns out so good. Lately I feel like that isn’t working as well. Maybe some ADD behavior there? I just really need some help!! Thanks so much. : ) – Tiffany
A: Hi Tiffany,
It does sound like you have a full plate and I see how you can get overwhelmed and want to stop in your tracks. But don’t! Starting simple is the best way to get everything done that you need.
To get caught up with your bills the simplest thing I have found is to either get one of those bill minder binders or if you are short on cash to write down monthly in a notebook all of the bills that are due and when it is due. Then when you pay it put a check mark beside it. Be sure to write down the amounts every month and if possible how much you paid and check number. This is the simplest way to keep track. Have one place in your home where you will keep this notebook and where you will bring all of the incoming bills. You will have to form a habit to do this.
Another way to keep all of the different roles in your life organized is to set up a project box for each role and keep all items related to that particular role in that project box. You can find project boxes or storage containers at Office Depot or Staples or Office Max.
I hope that helps you to get started. If you like using your computer try to get all of your bills sent via email and set up a Excel spreadsheet to keep up.
You can also use free services like Manilla that will send you reminders of when new statements come in and when bills are due.
What advice would you have for Tiffany? Do you feel that you have the same problem? Let me know in the comments below.