Home Help: Managing Your Personal Life and More with PEP

B ringing your work home with you is never a good idea and, if you’ve completed PEP, this won’t be an issue for you anyway. But if you haven’t already, do consider bringing home the PEP strategies you use at the office – because as our suggestions below demonstrate, PEP’s principles for increasing efficiency go well beyond the workplace. Let’s explore a few ways these strategies can transform your home life, too.

Organising a holiday or event:

Plan for an upcoming trip or special occasion in the same way you plan to complete a work project on deadline:

  • Begin by creating a mind map: it’s an excellent way to clarify your thinking. Mind maps also offer the ability to collaborate with others, so if you’re planning a holiday or party with a partner, friends or family, they can add their suggestions or objectives to your own.
  • As you would for your work project, list every task required to achieve the desired result, estimate the time each task will take and map out the timing using your calendar.
  • You can also build a PEP Project Plan.

PEPworldwide:nz accountant Belinda Harman used the mind map technique to plan a recent holiday in Fiji: “We thought of everything,” she says. “We’ll definitely be doing another one for our next overseas trip.”

Running your household:

As PEPworldwide:nz managing director Kathryn Anda points out, when you’re juggling family priorities, schedules and work commitments, “You can’t carry it all in your head.” Plan all that information into a family calendar instead:

  • Start the year by entering all your known commitments like school term dates, birthdays, business commitments and more into your family calendar. This calendar can then be broken down into monthly and weekly plans as the year progresses.
  • On a Sunday, plan any arrangements for the week ahead – who’s doing school pick-ups, who’s working late, who’s cooking. At the same time, plan the week’s meals (ask the family for ideas).
  • PEPworldwide:nz facilitator Jason Hewett suggests using a shared electronic calendar which includes immediate family as well as grandparents and nannies. “Everyone then knows where to be, when to be there and who is doing what,” he says. “It’s even better than the chalkboard in the kitchen – with the added bonus of showing our kids how to use technology to help them be more organised.”

Purge and Prune:

Just as you’ve done at the office, it’s time to stop procrastinating and start decluttering:

  • Revisit that stack of mail, bills, school newsletters and more (you know what we’re talking about) and apply the Do It Now or Decide Now technique: if a task will take ten minutes or less, do it immediately. Otherwise, decide what the next step is and move on from there.
  • Clean out any “dumping grounds” (does your car fit into your garage? It will soon.) Be ruthless. And for whatever remains after the cull, apply the PEP principle of “A place for everything and everything in its place”.

And we could go on, but you get the picture. Just as applying PEP principles at work frees you to focus on what matters, applying PEP principles at home offers you the same – whether it’s the chance to spend more time with your family, more time on yourself or simply feeling more in control. Now that sounds like a plan.