I will be the first to admit that I love my stickies. Like reading glasses, I have sticky pads all over the house and in my car. Anywhere inspiration may strike, you will find a pad of sticky notes.
Here’s how I use stickies to help manage my life:
Marking important passages in a book: I’m not particularly eager to write or highlight books. So I use the 1/2″ x 1-3/4″ colored stickies shown above to mark important passages I want to reference quickly. The stickies are small enough not to cover text yet large enough for me to make a quick note like “blog,” “quote,” or “action” to remind me of why I marked the page.
Daily/Weekly action items: The planner that works best for me doesn’t have spaces to note daily and weekly action items. I use the 2″ x 2″ stickies to record things I want to do on the day. This is especially helpful for recurring items so I can move the stickies from one day to the next. I use 2″ x 6″ stickies to note my weekly action items (I cut the 4″ x 6″ stickies for this purpose).
Random notes: Most of us probably use the 3″ x 3″ stickies for this purpose. Place stickies in areas where the action may need to take place. For example, if I need to leave my husband a note, I will put the sticky note on the cupboard above where he drops his lunch bucket and water bottle at the end of the day. Likewise, if I need to remember to take the dry cleaning, I will put the note on the door, so I will see it when I leave the house.
To-do items: I love the 3″ x 3″ sticky for this purpose for a few reasons. First, they are large enough to hold enough information to remind us of our intent yet not be intrusive. Second, as mentioned above, the sticky can be put at the point of performance. For example, “clean vegetable drawer” can be placed on the refrigerator door. Lastly, by creating a “Done” jar or box and throwing the sticky in there instead of the garbage, you will have a visual representation of your successes for the week. 🙂
Document errand route: Maximizing our time is essential, and the last thing most of us want to do is forget a stop we need to make. So if I’m running multiple errands, I will write down my route to ensure I don’t miss something or have to backtrack. For example, yesterday, I needed to go to the Post Office, Costco, Ulta, Ace Hardware, and the grocery store. Having the pre-determined route documented helped ensure I made it everywhere I needed to go.
Label cables and cords: Although not a great permanent solution, using a sticky to label a power cord or cable may make sense until a more permanent solution is available.
Label leftovers and “hands off” food: Most of us have encountered the “what the heck is this” food in our refrigerators. Labeling the food item and the date it was put in the fridge gives us a better opportunity to use the food before it goes into the garbage. Conversely, label items that are off-limits. For example, a “Hanson’s Christmas Party” note on the bundt cake will hopefully ensure a family member doesn’t consider it fair game for a late-night snack.
Color-coding by a family member: I’m a big fan of color-coding. Using a specific color for each family member will let them know that they need to pay attention to the sticky note or that they can ignore it entirely.
Color-coding by life bucket: Our lives are busy, and it can be helpful to organize our to-do lists by life bucket. For example, using a green sticky note for financial actions, a yellow sticky note for meal planning, and a pink sticky note for work will help get our minds in the right frameworks before tackling the action item.
Now, for a quick chuckle. Tearing a page off of a sticky pad may seem intuitive to most. However, if you need to know the most efficient way to tear off a sticky, here’s a video for you. 🙂
Cindy Jobs, PCAC, ACC
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