7 Things to do at the Beginning of Every Month
Success doesn't just happen to people; it's a combination of preparation and opportunity. The more we prepare, the more we are setting ourselves up for success when opportunity comes knocking. Here are seven things you can do at the beginning of every month to set yourself up for a more successful month:
Set your goal(s) for the month. At the start of every month, the first thing to do to set yourself up for success is to think about what goals you want to accomplish this month. Try to focus on one big goal, rather than a number of goals. When we have too many goals, it's easy to feel overwhelmed and then we may not accomplish any of the goals we set. Here are some examples of one big goal you could set for the month: prioritize your health by committing to exercising and eating more at home, clean out your garage, read four books, or spend more time on your marriage.
Schedule your month. Pull up your calendar and plug in any appointments (doctor visits, meeting with your accountant, etc.), time with family and friends, your kid's social events like soccer games and friend dates, and days off. When you know what your month will look like, there won't be any surprises and you'll be able to better allocate your time. If someone asks you if you can do something, you'll be able to look at your calendar and know.
Take note of any important dates coming up in the month. After scheduling your month out, see if there are any birthdays or special events like a party that you plan on attending. Get ahead of the game and avoid stress later by buying the presents you'll need and getting a baby sitter if you need one.
Choose a book to read. Reading is fundamental to continue to learn, exercise your brain, and to have fun! Start every month by choosing one book that you want to read. Not sure where to start? Here are some books that are on my reading list: Crying in H Mart, Untamed, and The Year of Less.
Wash your sheets. If you're anything like me, you might forget to wash your sheets more than you should. While I definitely think you should try to wash your sheets more than once a month, the beginning of the month is a great time to make sure you have some clean sheets on your bed.
Meal plan and grocery shop for staple items. Probably the most common resolution that people make and goal they have is to be healthier. A great time to think about your health is at the start of every month with what you put in your stomach. Create a meal plan for the month by choosing what meals you want to cook every week. There are tons of great resources for this on Pinterest. Then, go to the grocery store and stalk up on the main ingredients you'll need.
Create a budget and plan to track your spending. You can create a personal budget at the beginning of the year or you can set a budget for yourself at the beginning of every month. Your budget can include things like money spent on bills, groceries, entertainment, car insurance, meals out, etc. Creating and sticking to a budget will help you take control of your financial freedom, help you to establish a healthy relationship with money, and it will help you build good habits that will benefit your future self. I use the Spending App (it looks like a little brown wallet in the app store) to track all of my personal and financial spending. This app is free and I can't recommend it enough! It's especially helpful during tax season.
I hope these seven tips help you to live your months more intentionally. If you have any tips for how you start your month, I'd love to hear them!