- Google Calendar allows you to color code your events. Use these colors to cover ALL the scheduled aspects of your life (e.g. green for school activities, blue for study time, purple for sports, and so on). At a glance you have it ALL there in front of you and can easily spot problematic overlaps between events. You can take it with you too….on your phone, at work or as a printout.
- You can set up Alert Reminders. These not only ring through to either your email or phone (yes, it synchs to your iPhone!), but you can share the reminder alerts with others. This is where you get to stop wearing the nagging hat in the family!
- Time Block. This is an amazing technique for creating more free time in your life. Block out time on your to schedule time for the mundane time-sucker activities that can eat up a whole weekend. Set aside time to respond to email or help your kids with homework, for example. With an alert reminder set, you’ll consistently knock that off your To Do list and go to bed all caught up!
- Create incremental schedules for projects. Have a big kid? Help them keep current on school projects by assisting them in creating an incremental schedule. Breaking down assignments into bite-sized, manageable pieces will keep you all saner as due dates approache. AND if your kids split time with your ex, everyone can contribute to the project during their time with the kids.
- Overlay Family Calendars. Google Calendars allows you to share calendars with other Gmail users. This is a particularly useful feature because at a glance, you can see your entire family’s events (and they yours!). Used well, you’ll say goodbye to schedule conflicts and forgotten about commitments.
This can be a fun and transformational tool for older kids too! Get them involved in creating and managing their own calendar so they can say goodbye to late night study sessions or forgotten assignments. This is a skill they’ll take with them through life and is a proven secret of top performing students.
Once you have this system in place you can truly enjoy your free time. Your mind won’t be tied up in knots worrying about what might be falling through the cracks or left undone. I invite you to try this calmer, more organized way of life. I promise you’ll smile when you share calendars between you and your trusty co-parent. You can let off the worry and nagging gas pedal, knowing that he or she IS on the same page (at least around scheduling!).
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