The other day, I showed you a peek inside my 2020 PowerSheets by Cultivate What Matters, and shared my goals for the year. Today, I'm going to share my January tending list to show you what I'm working on this month, and to hold myself accountable.
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After setting my goals for the year, the next step is to break those goals down into actionable steps, or tending items, that can be worked on each day, week, and month throughout the year. This is one of the things that makes PowerSheets so effective: rather than trying to tackle all of my goals at one time and getting overwhelmed, I work on them a little bit at a time, chipping away at them until they are accomplished.
Since this is the first month of a brand new year, let me share with you what the monthly sections look like, and then I’ll dig into my specific action items for January.
Each month, you fill out the “Prepare Well” page, which is where you write out important to do’s, things you’re excited for, things on your mind, and things you are hopeful for. This is basically a mini-brain dump section to get everything out of your brain so you can organize your thoughts and create a plan of action.
Next is a two-page calendar spread. This is brand new for 2020, and I’m not quite sure how I’ll use this yet.
Initially, I’ve put a few things on my calendar that have deadlines or start dates. I may use it to document when I’ve checked off one of my action items or accomplished a monthly goal. When I share my February tending list, I’ll let you know how I used this calendar spread.
After the calendar pages, there is a page that says, “Make what matters happen this month”. There are two columns: on the left is space to write out the goals you want to focus on this month. On the right are action ideas for those goals.
As you can see, I have color-coded mine. I’ll explain more on that in just a moment.
Finally, we come to the “Tending List”. This is where the magic happens. (There’s one more page in each monthly section to review your month, but I’ll share that in February when I share my January progress and my February goals.)
The Tending List has a section at the top for encouraging words, and a place to write the top priority for the month. Then, there are sections for monthly, weekly, and daily action items.
After making my list of things I want to work on this month, I use three different colors of highlighters to help me decide which things need to be monthly items, weekly items, or daily items. Pink are monthly, blue are weekly, and yellow are daily.
If you’re brand new to using PowerSheets, the Tending List can be a bit confusing at first, so let me try to help explain how to use it:
HOW TO USE THE TENDING LIST
- MONTHLY ACTION ITEMS: These are things you will work on throughout the month, or only do once. For example, one of my monthly action items is to make a dentist appointment.
- WEEKLY ACTION ITEMS: These are things you will do on a weekly basis, or more than once during the course of the month. Maybe you want to attend church each week. Or perhaps you want to write one new blog post each week.
- DAILY ACTION ITEMS/HABITS: These are thins you want to work on daily, or almost daily. For example, I want to go to the gym three times each week. I won’t go every single day, but I will go more than once each week, so it’s a daily action item.
JANUARY 2020 TENDING LIST
My encouraging words this month are: “Don’t let one bad day ruin your entire year.”
I have a tendency to jump in with both feet, get burned out, and give up because things didn’t turn out the way I had hoped. So I wrote this to remind myself to take things slow, one day at a time, and give myself some grace.
My top priority this month is to stay on top of my budget. That’s something I struggled with all of 2019, so I’m keeping it front of mind this year to stay on track.
Now to my action items:
//MONTHLY ACTION ITEMS:
- Read “Rhythms of Renewal“: (affiliate link) This aligns with my faith-centered goal of keeping the Sabbath and will be a great resource for me.
- Talk to Susan about pet-sitting: My friend Susan pet-sits in our area and has mentioned that she has had to turn people away because she can’t handle the business. I want to talk to her about doing that on the side for a little extra cash. (Hello, financial goals!)
- Use or cancel YNAB by 1/30: In an effort to better track our spending, I signed up for a free month of You Need a Budget. My free month ends on 1/30 so I’ll review my usage and either keep it, if it helped, or cancel it.
- Make dentist appointment: Gotta make this happen. It’s been forever since I’ve been to any doctor’s appointments.
- Go on a date night with Mark: One of my 2020 goals is to nourish my relationship with my husband, but we also want to stick to a budget. So, one monthly date night should be good, and we can have date nights in the rest of the time!
- Host Sunday supper for friends: I’m thinking I can make this a two-fer with a friends baby shower!
- Plan well and host WNOW: I’ve been given the reigns on our church’s quarterly Women’s Night of Worship, and my first one is this month. Pray for me!
- Send Kim a birthday card: Plain and simple, I suck at sending cards, but I love my friends. I’m trying to be more intentional about this going forward.
//WEEKLY ACTION ITEMS:
- Practice the Sabbath: This is a huge one for me this year. I’m excited to learn how to have one day each week in restful worship of the Lord.
- Update and follow budget plan: By dedicating one day each week to update our budget, we’re more likely to stay on track.
- Plan and prepare healthy meals: My health is a goal this year, and I know that planning ahead with healthy meals will improve my chances of eating better. (And, bonus: I’ll save money by not eating out so often!)
- Update church podcast: I use my tending list for work projects, too. We’re beginning a podcast at church, so I need to remember to post our sermons each week.
//DAILY ACTION ITEMS:
- Read 1 chapter of Matthew: I’m following my own New Testament Bible Study Plan this year, and January’s reading is the book of Matthew.
- Go to the gym or walk: I want to work out at the gym three days each week, and walk in my neighborhood when the weather permits.