Earlier this week, I made a mental note that one of my resolutions will be to have a more positive outlook on life and be thankful for the little things.
For example, my typical Monday morning thought is: “Ugh, I’m so tired. Today is going to be so busy. Is it Friday yet?”
Is there a reason to voice that? I mean, it’s pretty much a universal truth that Monday is not only the busiest day of the workweek, but also the day you feel the most tired. Instead of voicing that and starting the day off with a complaint, choose to look at the positive side. Sure, Mondays require a lot of energy, but be thankful for waking up each morning with a job to do.
So how does this mini reflection on Mondays relate to this post? Well, I have 3 tools that have helped keep my life on the positive, organized track:
- Positive Things Jar
- Wall Calendar
I should point out these 3 things don’t have to be DIYs, but mine are because sometimes it’s just more fun that way.
DIY #1: Reflect on the Good Moments with a Positive Things Jar
What is it? It’s a jar (or any container of your choosing) that holds all the positive things that happen throughout the year, no matter how big or small.
How do you use it? Well, it’s simple. Whenever something good happens to you, write it down (along with the date) on a strip of paper and toss it in the jar. It can be something as big as getting a new car or a new job, or as small as a doing a good deed of the day or getting a nice text. When the end of the year comes, you can look back and read all the positive things that happened.
How do you make this? It’s super easy. I actually have an old DIY post on this that you can read to get a little more detail. All you need is a container to hold your notes, paper for your notes, and anything you’d like to use to decorate your homemade label.
Can you buy this instead? Sure! In fact, a very similar thing in book form is the Five Year Diary, which I’ve used in previous years. It’s a 5-year memory book in which you write one thing down each day, and as you get to the same day next year, you can look back and read what you wrote the previous year. The main difference between the jar and the book version is that the book version is daily, whereas the jar version is more sporadic and doesn’t need to have something each day.
DIY #2: Stay Organized with a Home and Life Binder
What is it? Simply put, it’s your life in a binder.
How do you use it? Anything you need to keep track of–home, fitness, projects–keep in the binder. You can fill it with lists, schedules, spreadsheets, anything you can think of.
What do you need to make this? All you need is a binder, dividers, and paper. If you prefer printed items as opposed to everything handwritten, then you’ll also need a printer and printer paper. Just for reference, below is how I’ve broken my binder down in the past:
- Calendars – This section holds monthly and weekly calendars.
- Home – This section holds home-related items like grocery lists, project ideas, and tasks to do around the house.
- Finance – This section keeps all the financial information. Doing your own checks and balances instead of relying on online banking can help you become more aware of your finances.
- Fitness – This section keeps a food journal and workout tracker to stay accountable when it comes to health.
- Blog – If you blog, use this section keep all of your ideas housed into one place.
Can you buy this instead? Yes, there are a lot of great “life planners” out there if you aren’t the crafty type. The Happy Planner creates a home planner extension you can add to any disc-bound planner. If you’d prefer a separate planner to go along with the home options, check out The Day Designer.
DIY #3: Keep the Goals Visible with a Monthly Wall Calendar
What is it? This is your standard, run of the mill monthly wall calendar. It’s customized to include a variety of backgrounds and a positive quote or phrase for each month.
How do you use it? Add tasks or reminders that you need extra visibility to on the wall calendar so they’re constantly in your line of sight.
How can you make it? Hobby Lobby has a 12-month calendar template already bound in two different sizes. In addition to that, you’ll need a few sets of stickers: one filled with numbers to use as the dates, one filled with the months, and a few with quotes you like. Lastly, you may want a pack of decorative paper to use as the background of each month. All you have to do after that is cut and glue the decorative paper to fit the calendar size, and then pick a quote to stick over top.
Can you buy this instead? Sure! There are plenty of wall calendar options for you readily available at office stores, bookstores, and Target. If you’re wanting the creativity without having to make it yourself, why not try Etsy for cute calendars?
Those are just a few of the tools I’ve used in the past to help kick off the new year. Do you have any items or projects you like to do to keep your life organized and positive?
Also Read: 7 Tips for Getting Organized
How do you set yourself up for success in a new year?
Note: This post was originally written in 2015 and updated in 2017...hence the off dates. ;)