The planner trick that has saved me time, money and sanity

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I am pretty honest with the fact that I struggle with organization. And being disorganized has cost me time and money.

But in recent years I have developed a little trick to help me keep track of things, this is something that I learned from my long-time mentor and it has saved me so much time, money and sanity.

What’s the trick? Tracking what I did in my daily planner.

Each day, in the evening after the kids are in bed I take about 30 seconds and jot down the highlights from that day. It may be things I did with my kids, appointment results (like a weight check for the baby and how much she weighed), purchases I made, bills I paid, the list goes on and on.

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So why is this important?

It saves money

This simple practice has been remarkably helpful. For example, when getting quotes on various home improvements or auto repairs I can site any discrepancies if the price suddenly changes after services rendered (yes, it has happened).

When I got a bill from my doctor’s office after my insurance assured me something would be covered I was able to sort it out quickly with the office manager by referencing who I had spoken to and when.

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It shows me where I waste time

I am not writing down hour by hour how I spent my time, but I am keeping track of where my time went. This helps me see where those time wasters are. Have you ever gotten to the end of the day and wondered where the time went? What you did all day? This has helped me see where I could better spend my precious hours.

Helps me avoid mistakes

For the first few days my c-section I was on two different medications to help me manage the pain. If I had taken the wrong medication twice in a row it could have been really bad. In the midst of my newborn exhaustion that was a mistake I could have easily made, but by jotting down when I took what medication I was able to prevent this mistake.

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Allows me to keep memories

There are small things I want to remember, the cute way my toddler mispronounced something, a funny story my seven year old told me, a joke my husband made. By jotting these things down I can look back on them later.

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It improves brain function

Did you know there are scientific studies that suggest writing things down by hand helps you commit them to memory? Physically writing things down actually uses three different parts of your brain. The more you use neural pathways the more likely you are to ward off Alzheimer’s. Did you know that? Fascinating! (Source)

What about you? Do you write things down? Leave me a comment and tell me.