You have tried many different planners.
The one that you saw on sale at Target. You even tried one that you saw your favorite influencer using on Instagram.
But you can’t stick with those planners. Or maybe they don’t work for your lifestyle and what you are trying to accomplish.
There’s a new way of planning and blocking my days that I started using that has changed the way my days and weeks flow. And I want the same thing for you.
Spoiler. It’s routine block planning.
My friend and guest Ashley Brown is gonna share what routine blocking planning is, what routine blocking planning is for, and how to use routine block planning for your busy week. If you want a better way of planning your week without stress, you’ve got to check out this episode.
Ashley Brown is a wife, mama of 2, and creator and owner of Routine and Things, which equips women to consistently live their happiest life one routine at a time.
Ashley strongly believes routines are a form of wellness and can be a beautiful springboard for improving your home, yourself, and your life.
She’s on a mission to see as many women as possible live life with ease by starting, maintaining, and enjoying routines!
Connect with Ashley
- Blog/Website: https://routineandthings.com
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/routineandthings
- Morning Routine Roadmap: https://routineandthings.lpages.co/morning-routine-roadmap/
Links Mentioned in This Episode
- The Magic of Routines for Busy Moms
- How to Become the Manager of Your Home
- The Easy Way to Get Kids to do Chores Without Complaining
- Routine and Things Planner
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Related blog posts
- The Magic of Routines for Busy Moms
- How to Become the Manager of Your Home
- Routines and Home Management Systems to Simplify Your Life
Transcript of this Episode
Toni-Ann Mayembe 0:55
So you, you’ve tried many different planners, the one you saw at Target even tried that one that your favorite influencer on Instagram was using, but you can’t get those planners that stick. Or maybe they just don’t work for your lifestyle and what you’re trying to accomplish. But there’s a way of planning and blocking out my days that I’ve started using this change the way that my days and weeks flow. And I want the same thing for you. Spoiler it’s routine block planning. My friend and guests, Ashley Brown is going to share with us today, how we can use routine blocking, who routine blocking is for and how to use it to plan out your busy week. Now if you want a better way of planning your week, without the stress, you’ve got to check out this
Ashley Brown 1:35
episode. My name is Ashley Brown. I’m the founder and owner of routine things which is all about helping women get organized into routine so that they enjoy the heck out of life.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 1:46
So first things first, what is routine blocking?
Ashley Brown 1:51
This is a method of planning very simple, where you organize your daily tasks into four routine categories, self care, family, cleaning and cooking. And I absolutely love is not information out there. Because I created the planning method from my stay at home mom days, I came up with this way of planning that really helped me to organize what was going on in my head onto paper. And it has been extremely helpful for me. And I’m really hoping that is extremely helpful for other women. And routine
Toni-Ann Mayembe 2:22
planning is a little bit different. Because I know, we’ve talked about time blocking before we’ve talked about, you know, hourly scheduling, but routine blocking is just a little bit different. It does take into account some of those things correct me if I’m wrong, but it’s not solely focused on the time part.
Ashley Brown 2:39
Yeah, no, it’s not it’s not focused on the time part is more so focused on the actual routine category. And so how I look at it is like time blocking is really can be really helpful for some people that also feel like for certain lifestyles, it can also be very restrictive. And it can feel like it’s not realistic. Like I can’t keep this in a certain time, like, yes, maybe we’re able to keep working a certain time. But like for us to be like I’m going to do the laundry at this specific time during the day. Sometimes, depending on what’s happening during our day, it might not be able to happen at that exact time. And so routine blocking is helpful because it’s not as much of a restriction on your time is restricting you to a certain routine category, but not a timeframe. So it’s more flexible in that regard.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 3:26
Now, you said routine categories and you gave for so cleaning, self care, cooking and family. Why those four? Is it? I want to know is it something else you could have added? But you’re like, Nah, we don’t need to do that. Well, why those four?
Ashley Brown 3:40
Yeah, those four because I really feel like outside of work. Now this is outside of work outside of work, which are let’s be real work is something that we’re going to do because we got to pay our bills. So that is just going to be done. And even when you don’t feel like doing work or going to work your butt still get up and you still do it. Because you know, this is a huge responsibility that plays a part into my lifestyle. So that’s something that we’re not having to think about, like, oh, I need to really make sure I plan my work. No, you’re but getting up you’re going to work. So we’re doing work at your home, wherever you are whatever in your business. And so work is going to get done. But the four routine categories, these four are things that sometimes can get lost in the shuffle of life, when we feel like life is super overwhelming or stressful, that they can just get lost in the sauce. And when you think about it, those four categories are the things that we’re thinking about on a daily basis or that need to be managed on a daily basis for us not to have a lot of stress and for us to feel like we are managing our lives. Well I know that for definitely for moms we’re gonna think about children we’re gonna think about our families but when it comes to those other and also even cooking but when it comes to like the cleaning and also the self care Sometimes those things can get pushed to the backburner because it’s like, okay, cleaning isn’t going to like, I’m not going to die from cleaning. Like that’s not. That’s what if I push it off, like, it’s not that big of a deal. But when it does get pushed off, we start to fill in internal conflict and start to feel super stressed about it. Because our home looks crazy. The laundry isn’t done, we’re pulling out clothes from here and there trying to figure things out, and also with our self care. And when we are not caring for ourselves and treating ourselves, well, the management of the life gets a lot hectic, because if we are the ones that are managing all of the things, and even when we have partners many times, I don’t know if you’re experienced this, but as women, I just feel like we have a lot more in our hands. And we’re like following up a lot more, we’re just kind of built differently honestly and made differently. And so even if you have a partner yourself, care is really important for you and managing the things that you’re doing in your day managing your mind managing your energy. And that’s really important. So that’s why I chose those four groups and categories outside of work.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 6:07
And I liked that you have those particular four, because I will tell you, the cooking, for me is the one that stresses me out the most cooking, and then cleaning, like I’ll be good for a little bit and then I’ll fall off. And part of it has to do with the amount of traveling that I do and that like can really mess up the routine. If you’re used to doing certain things on certain days, or certain times of the week, it messes you up when you’re gone for a week, and you haven’t come back and you’re like wait, I’m gonna nothing’s been done. It’s a mess. But I liked these four. And I really liked the routine blocking method. But how can we find out if this is something that will be right for us versus some other method,
Ashley Brown 6:48
I would say form a routine cleaning method. I think that one because it’s very simplistic, I think that it would be really great for those who if you’re listening to this and you love really simple planners, I think one that could be really helpful for you. Because it is a simple way and really just forces you to keep a simple lifestyle, to be perfectly honest. And with this method, I think also, if you don’t like the timing, like if you are more so like I don’t want to have like specific times that I do things, I just want to have a realistic picture of what I’m going to do on my day without it being time specific, I think you would thoroughly enjoy this. If you are wanting to stay anchored to those four categories, self care, family cleaning and cooking, I think that would be super helpful for you as well that you weren’t really like it. Routine blocking is really helpful in allowing you to become a good steward of your time and energy. And that’s something I want to pinpoint. Because sometimes we get so focused on like, Oh, time management, how much time do I have, which is important. But I really feel it as if time management isn’t released, the thing that we struggle with, quote unquote, because time is just math, like how much time do you have in a day? And what are you going to do with that time. So I don’t feel like we’ve really struggled with like time management, maybe we struggle with prioritization and trying to decide what needs to be done. Or we also struggle with energy management. And so I feel like the the routine block planning method helps you with prioritizing because I’m given like you have four categories, you need to prioritize which one of those you want to really think about your day outside of your work activities. And then also, it helps you with your energy management, because routine blocking is really helping you to focus your energy in a specific way, instead of you feeling as if you just have like this blank sheet of paper, and it’s like, Oh, I gotta try to fill it in this page, which our mind is gonna go to, it’s like, let me fill in the entire page. And it’s like, no, don’t fill in the entire page, because that’s not realistic and can’t get all of that done. And your energy is going to be wiped out, even if you do get it done. But how do you manage your energy in a way that makes sense. And I feel like routine blocking really helps with that. Energy management is something that I’m going to be talking about more heavily just throughout the rest of this year. But I think that that’s something that we have to get better with if we feel as if we’re going to live life with more ease and more joy
Toni-Ann Mayembe 9:29
with these particular four categories. If you know like I said, cooking is the one that I struggle with. In particular, are there certain things that you would say like make sure that you implement these things or these are some things you should consider when starting to set up those particular routines within those four categories?
Ashley Brown 9:48
Yes, I would say like you just say like you know cooking for you is not kind of your jam. I want for everyone to know that when it comes to these four categories, it’s not just about like what you’re doing, it also can be helpful for you to put in these categories, things that you are asking others to do. So like anything that you’re delegating can be put in these categories. So if you know, Tony, and you’re like, I’m not really I don’t really like the cooking, even though you’ll do it, but maybe it’s like, okay, me sure I’d text Herbie to get food tonight or to make dinner, you can put that in the routine block, or even if you don’t clean your home, I know I have a few friends that they have house cleaners come is that you can put that in the routine block is like make sure that I you know, move certain things out of the way. So when the home cleaners come like things are moved out, or just put like, this is the day, like the home cleaners are coming today. And so that is how you can use a routine blocks as well. It’s not just about what you’re doing. It’s about really getting a picture of just what how you want your day to flow. And so I would just start there and try to think about like, what things do I, whatever team blocks are really specific to me, but then which ones can I play around with to where I can delegate and ask for help. And more, so manage someone else doing it. Using this method of planning. If you don’t have much help, that’s when you have to get really clear on which routine blocks are important for me to make sure that I am feeding into or make sure that I am catering to in my day. Like that’s when you really have to make a decision, like self care, I think needs to be done every single day. So that’s already that’s going to be one that’s taken up. But maybe it’s like, yeah, and also cooking, like maybe you can write down like what you’re cooking, or that you need to make sure you take out chicken. But in terms of the cleaning in the family, maybe it’s like, okay, my kids are going to like daycare. So like that’s all that they’re doing today. So that’s not really anything for you. And cleaning. Maybe you’re like you know what, I don’t need to really do anything today except tidy up before we go to bed. And you can just put tidy on there. And so you really want to think about which categories are going to be necessary for you to lean into for your day. And to make sure that you’re dispersing your tasks in a way that makes sense. The point of routine blocking is not for you to once you see it, because you have to it’s a very visual type of way of planning. But once you see the routine block grid, the purpose of it is for you to is not for you to fill in every category. For every single day, the point of it is for you to really start to get intentional about where your energy needs to be and where your time is gonna go. And when are you going to put in the time that you have and what things are you going to accomplish. And so I want to make that very clear, because I know for us type a folk and for us higher achievers, we want to fill in every little block and every little space. But that’s what’s wearing you out already. And that’s why we many times will be burned out I’m here I’m raising my hand in the back because I’m a high achiever and I’m also a type A person, I’ve learned how to be very flexible and adapt to change. But I know that we can get burned out if we are constantly filling this need of like filling every blog or checking off every box. And we just feel like we always have to be doing something that will wear you out. You don’t we have to get better rest and making sure we’re taking care of ourselves in ways that really nourish us.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 13:24
Now we talk a lot about routine planning, and how it’s different from, you know, some of the other traditional planning methods. We talked about some of the benefits of it as well as how to decide if it’s right for us, which I think I think everybody can make it work for them in some kind of way. But what I really wanted you to talk about is what you have actually been working on in the background that is finally here and in person, which is your planner, because this planner is one that I’m super excited about. I was one of the ones that was lucky enough to get to test some things out while you were working on it. So I know what it’s all about. And I know how it works. And I think it’s amazing. So I want you to talk to us about the planner that is out that we can get that will help us with everything that you talked about today.
Ashley Brown 14:15
Yes, thank you, Tony. And the planner is the routine of things planner, y’all. It’s finally here. I’ve been working on this thing since the beginning of the year. And it’s finally here for everyone who wants to come grab it. I love the routine and things planner I specifically created this in order to help women get organized and into routine which is the mission of routine and things. But it’s really to help you get and stay organized. And here’s why the planner isn’t just for you to plan it also allows you to build and maintain routines, because I really feel like planning helps you get organized because it gives you a roadmap for your week. It gives you a roadmap for are just what you want to accomplish. And that can help you get organized, you’re taking what’s in your mind, you’re putting it onto paper, and you’re organizing those things, right. But then I honestly feel as if routines help you stay organized with everything, because they are foundations, and they are supportive practices that are helpful for you when you are needing to stay consistent with certain things that are coming up often. And when you are staying consistent with those things that show up on a day to day basis, or weekly basis. And you’re staying consistent with that, when things come, I feel like just stressors, you feel like you can handle them more. And so I really feel like routines help you to still to stay somewhat balanced throughout all of the just fires, that you’re putting out the unexpected seas that come about helps you stay grounded. And then that’s going to help you stay organized in your life because you’re not going to be pulled and distracted so much by things that pop up, you have a flow to how you get certain things done. And so I love that the planner includes both routines and planning, because they’re both really strong organizational tools that when using synergy, are powerful. And so that’s what I love about the routine and things planner as well as the routine blob planning method which is inside. I’m so excited about it.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 16:17
Yes, yes, I am excited to I’m just excited. It’s finally here. Because like I said, I got to play around with it. And I I’ll be honest with you, like I noticed the difference when I was using it, because I think I use it for like two or three weeks, consistently. I will tell you, I love my style planner. And I think I told you actually I was like Gralla, my planner, you don’t have to work hard to get me to depart with this. But I love myself planner, but it’s really focused on getting things done, which is great. But it’s not focused on all of the different categories that we talked about that really helped to make your life go a lot smoother. So yeah, I’m getting things done. But you know, dinner isn’t always ready on time, or I’m not always remembering to do something for myself, or like I forgot to, you know, clean the floors. And now it’s a big mess. Like, it’s not taking into account all the things as a mom that we really need to make sure that we have in place so that our lives are a lot better. So yes, I love my planner, it does help me stay focused on the tasks that I need to get done. But this planner is very different. And I’m so excited for it. Because it’s really going to help with making sure that your life runs a whole lot smoother. So you’re taking in consideration every day, those four different categories.
Ashley Brown 17:29
No, I agree with you wholeheartedly. So I love one that you love your planner, I think that that’s really important for you to know what works for you. For one, I’m always a huge proponent of if it works for you keep doing it. However, if something isn’t working for you, or you haven’t found the right system, I really feel as if the routine and things planner is a great planner to try and to adjust to because I think that will really change the way that you plan and also in the way that you manage your time and energy.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 17:58
And just to clarify the rutina thing, planner is not dated, so you can get it anytime of the year. Someone may be listening to this in the middle of April or something and they’re like, oh, no, I can’t get it. Because it’s the middle of April nope, nope, you can get it. It’s not dated. So definitely, like I said, if you are wanting to get better at not only planning but managing those four categories for sure. Check out this planner, actually tell us where we can go to get it if we want to go ahead and give it a try.
Ashley Brown 18:28
Yeah, so you can get the routine and things planner by going to routine and things.com You can also go straight to routine and things.com forward slash plan if you want to, but it’s right at the forefront of our website is there for you to grab and I can’t wait for you to get it if you do try it out.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 18:46
Now if you’re ready to get your hands on the routine and things planner, the links will be in the show notes and I can’t wait for you to try it. But before we go actually has these final remarks.
Ashley Brown 18:57
I would like to leave you with you know continue to do what works for you. If you’re feeling overwhelmed. If you’re feeling like life is super stressful. Take a deep breath it’s going to be okay but then also think about really what you need right now and if you fill in this organizes was calling causing you a lot of stress. And definitely try out the routine and things plan I think it’s gonna be really helpful.
Toni-Ann Mayembe 19:21
Now that’s it for this episode of The Real happy mom podcast. To find the links in Show Notes head on over to Real happy mom.com/ 192 And make sure you stay tuned for next week for another full episode. Take care and with lots of love