The first of every month, feels like a small clean slate in my life. A chance to prepare as much as I can for the coming month that I know of to allow a little more room for joyful surprises and moments of relaxtion. I’m not one who enjoys being blind-sided although I can usually roll with it.

Small tasks that help clear the path…

Purge the purse

All those receipts! That loose change that somehow grows in my purse even though I make 95% of my purchases with my debit card. All of it is tossed. The purse is re-organized. Depending on the season, the purse is switched out. We’re ready for new adventures!

Send out snail mail birthday, anniversary, etc. cards for the whole month

One of my personal challenges for the year. When I “adult color” I do so with postcards so I can mail out these orginals to colleagues and loved ones for a bit of a personal touch. It also helps to reduce my stress and mailing out reduces the clutter here!

Wash comforters and blankets

Regular linen washing is part of my laundry schedule but I like to make a truly FRESH start by washing the quilts and our throw blankets.

Donation Dozen

Trying to reduce our clutter and crowding in our townhouse, I’m beginning a new task this month. I plan to seek out 12 items to donate – clothes, books, toys, kitchenware, etc. Especially with school and fall approaching I’m sure the boy has outgrown some clothes and coats we can donate. Goal: put everything in a box and deliver to local charity by the 5th of the month at the latest.

Tasks that take time but oh, so worth it…

Calendar Review

At the beginning of each month, I review my calendar for the next 30 days – birthdays, appointments, plans, etc. As I’m doing this, I pull up the local movie theater and the community calendar for adding any local events to the month. This helps me not forget about plans I made and ensure I budget the monthly finances for gifts, meals out, special events, etc.

Reevaluate the budget

It’s a great time to take a look at your finances, see how the previous month went, and tweak anything if you need to. Remember that the key to successful finances is budgeting. No matter how well you might think you’re doing financially, a quick review of your monthly finances at the beginning of the month won’t hurt!

Load the tweets and posts

I keep a content calendar for my two blogs, three Twitter accounts and LinkedIn profile. To help me be consistent, I have several regular cateogries of posts – Monday Motivation, weekly, Wednesday Wallpaper, etc. Usually the first Sunday afternoon of the month is dedicated to scheduling as much as this content as I can so I don’t need to scramble at the last minute mid-month. By developing this calendar, I also have a chance to review how the last 4 weeks worked and what I want to modify going forward.

What do you do at the beginning of each month to help yourself succeed?