This is a continuation from “S.H.E.s with ADD“.
Once you have all of your cards filled out, you need to file them. First, though, you need to figure out your weekly schedule. Again, this is something that may need to be readjusted as you get used to the system.
Pam and Peggy recommend at least one heavy cleaning day, one or two light cleaning days, a desk day for paperwork, a day for errands, and a personal day just for you. Sundays are for family and church. (I know that’s only 6 days – I can’t remember anymore.)
If you go to 50’s Mom’s blog about her cardfile and click on the picture, you can get a close up view of her weekly plan. Maybe that will help.
Put your 1-31 cards into your card box with today’s date in the front. After 31, file the dates that have already passed. For instance, today is the 8th: cards 8-31 will be filed with 8 in front. Cards 1-7 will be behind cards 8-31. That way it rotates smoothly throughout the month.
Now take all of your daily cards and file them in today’s date. Weekly cards will be filed according to your schedule. For instance, if Thursday is your heavy cleaning day, you might want to file cards like changing sheets and mopping floors under Thursday’s date. If you pay bills weekly and on Friday, put those cards under Friday’s date. Personal cards, like for appointments, go under the appropriate day. If you run errands on Wednesday, all errand related cards go there: pick up the drycleaning, go to the bank, etc.
Each night before you go to bed, review the cards for the following day. Each morning, check your cardfile and do the cards. Some people assign a time for each card; I’m not that person. I do them when I feel like doing them or when I can. I make sure they are all done at the end of the day.
If you really can’t bring yourself to do a certain chore – let’s say mopping the kitchen floor (I hate that one) – then you have the option not to do it. You just pencil in the date on the card that you skipped it. You get 2 times to skip before it absolutely has to be done.
Now, what about the white cards and the monthly files?
White cards are for monthly or seasonal chores, like washing the window screens in the summer, turning your mattress every other month, or cleaning the furnace vents.
If you get Pam and Peggy’s book, they make a lot of good suggestions for things I wouldn’t have thought of, like vacuuming the tracks of your sliding doors once a month.
You can also add instructions on each card if you want to delegate it to someone else so that they know what is expected. Or you can do what some moms do and help the kids make their own file. For those of you who prefer electronic systems, there are even some cardfiles out there that have been created for that purpose. I used to have one on my Palm, but it was never the same for me.
I know this system sounds like a lot of work, but it really isn’t once you get it up and running. I recommend making cards for everything, including stuff like loading the dishwasher and unloading it. The sense of satisfaction you get is motivational.