Plan Simple with Mia Moran
Planning for Weeks at Home

Planning for Weeks at Home

March 27, 2020

It is such a strange time. We are being asked to stay home, to be ok with uncertainty, and keep a safe distance from each other. Events and activities that we have been preparing for or waiting for are cancelled. The same goes for our kiddos.

It is hard to experience, much less explain.

We feel disappointed. A moment later disappointment almost feels selfish.

None of it feels comfortable. It is easy to slip into fear—and easy to pass the fear onto our kids.

And all this said, I am determined to see the opportunity in what feels like a huge obstacle.

No one will be the same after this experience, so why not be better? 

I am planning week by week and creating the momentum in my heart for this to last longer than the 3 weeks (now 8) school is currently cancelled. 

On a normal week, I work from home while my three kids are at school and my husband is at the office. Now we are all home. Nothing is normal. If you are not already in this situation, it may just be a matter of time.

I want to take you through making a plan for the next few weeks, and maybe beyond.

Planning resources for this unusual time can be found by clicking on the bar on top of plansimple.com.

33 Things with Courtney Carver

33 Things with Courtney Carver

March 5, 2020

The simpler my life got outside of my closet, the more apparent it was that there was a problem in the closet. –Courtney Carver

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Courtney Carver, the author of Soulful Simplicity. After getting diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2006, Courtney started experimenting, first with food and diet, than in reducing stress. The common thread she found in the changes she was making—simplicity. 

It may not seem like simplifying your closet, changing what you eat, and reducing debt have a lot in common, but Courtney talks about changes in all these areas. She realized that so many things that simply felt like adulting, could be easier, different. Simplifying in all these areas and more reduced stress. 

One of the things we dive into is clutter, and how decluttering can become it’s own stressful thing. Either it’s something that keeps showing up again and again on your to-do list and never getting done, or you do it and then clutter builds up again. Courtney remembers the five minutes of feeling good when everything was decluttered and in its place before it all fell apart. Then she made a change. She decided to really get rid of stuff and only keep what she really wanted in her house and, the important part, she resisted bringing in new things. 

We talk about: 

  • How the more stuff you bring into your house, the more you want to bring stuff in 
  • Understanding why you are shopping to help you resist bringing in things you don’t need (and really don’t want)
  • The 333 challenge to simplify your wardrobe
  • The feeling of space and lightness that comes with releasing clothes that don’t fit you, clothes other people that you don’t love, other clothes you don’t wear for whatever reason—and how this winnowing makes decisions easier
  • Noticing the stories we’re telling ourselves and how they keep us hanging onto or buying stuff
  • Holding onto or letting go of books

BIO

Courtney Carver writes things. She wrote a book called Soulful Simplicity and the simplicity blog, bemorewithless.com. She shares things that make her laugh and cry on Instagram (@bemorewithless). She doesn't know her Myers Briggs Type but she knows she's an introvert because she needs to be free from humans several times a day (cats and dogs are always welcome). Aside from her seasonal wardrobe, she doesn't count her things.

Carver doesn't have an impressive degree, awards, or a big, fancy home full of stuff. Instead, she selectively surrounds herself with her favorite things and people she loves. She does work she truly cares about, goes on adventures (in the world or in her own backyard) and likes chai lattes with almond milk while reading or writing.

Her new book, Project 333, The Minimalist Fashion Challenge That Proves Less Really is So Much More will help you create a capsule wardrobe and a beautiful life.

 

LINKS

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • NOTICE YOUR STORIES. As you get dressed or flip through your closet, notice the stories you tell yourself. I can’t get rid of that, my mom made it. I might need that suit for an interview. These jeans will fit me again. It’s good to have choices in shoes. What if you changed the story? And notice what you are drawn to, what you wear again and again. Ask: What if I wore these things for the next three months?

  • TAKE THE 333 CHALLENGE. Choose 33 items to wear for the next 3 months. Include clothes, shoes, jewelry, and accessories, but you don’t have to count things like underwear, sleepwear or loungewear, or athletic or yoga clothes (if actually worn for that purpose). (For more tips on choosing, see Courtney’s blog and Project 333 challenge or book linked above.) Don’t get rid of your other clothes just yet. Just pack them away for 3 months. See how it feels.

  • RESIST BRINGING THINGS IN. Decluttering is great, but so often we cycle through decluttering only to bring in more clutter. Challenge yourself not to bring in new things for the next week, ten days, month … whatever period you want to work with. When you find yourself filling up a cart in Target when you just ran in for detergent or about to mindlessly click the buy button on Amazon, stop. Ask yourself, why you are buying—what do you really need at the moment. Remind yourself why you want to resist bringing things in. 

 

(Doable Change) Vision

(Doable Change) Vision

March 2, 2020

Week 5. What part of your vision can you tackle in the next 90 days? As moms, the rug is always being pulled from under us when we plan for a year. We are more likely to get into perfection paralysis and stay out of action with the concept of a resolution. Very often I hear stories of people getting done in 3 months what they thought they would get done in a year when they focus on 90 days. 

Instagram @plansimple.co 

Refer to the 90-Day Goal Planning Sheet that you can download at plansimple.com/simplify2020.

Clutter with Kate Varness

Clutter with Kate Varness

February 19, 2020

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Kate Varness, a professional organizer about our stuff and the internal stuff that goes with it. Kate started her organizing work when she had three kids under 5. 

A lot of the people Kate works with are in a period of life transition. Often times a change has happened, and they haven’t quite caught up in their life. They need to figure out the skills they need, the stuff they need, and the help they need for their present situation. 

I noted that sometimes when I'm feeling overwhelmed, I declutter something and that opens up space to have ideas. But Kate wrote that sometimes we actually can't let go and declutter some of the things in our physical space if we don't have an idea of where we're going. We have trouble letting go of stuff that is tied to identity if that identity is changing because we don’t have a new idea to fill it. 

We talk about: 

  • Tuning into and honoring your own desires (do I like this? Do I not like this?)
  • Brainstorming a list of things you want to do or ever wanted to try
  • Getting past the idea that your value as a human is based on what you do or how much money you make
  • Getting out of your comfort zone and the space for change it creates
  • When decluttering start with what’s easy—find 15 things to trash or donate each day, work through the things you are pretty sure about and then move on to the things you are more ambivalent about
  • Learning to receive and believe you are worthy

BIO

Kate is an author, speaker, coach, professional organizer, and the founder of Green Light Organizing and Coaching who loves helping women live their best life. She’s a Certified Professional Organizer specializing in Chronic Disorganization (CPO-CD) and a Certified Organizer Coach (COC). Kate understands that organizing and life solutions need to be practical and family-friendly. It’s not about a pristine, perfect house, but about mindset shifts and gaining momentum that goes beyond an organized house. 

LINKS

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • TUNE INTO YOUR DESIRES. If you are taking care of others, it can be easy to lose sight of what you really want. As you go through your day, ask yourself: Do I like this? Do I want to do this? Start by noticing. Then try saying yes to something that you want. How does it feel?

  • GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE. Challenge yourself to do one new thing every day for a week. Wear a temporary tattoo, burst into song in the grocery store … whatever it is. The goal is to move out of your comfort zone and notice what happens to the way you think.

  • CHECK YOUR ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE. What’s the worst-case scenario? If you are feeling stuck about letting go of something or making a decision, ask what the worst-case scenario is? Think about how you could handle that. Does it change how you feel about letting go or your decision? 

 

(Doable Change) Plan your week

(Doable Change) Plan your week

February 19, 2020

“If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else.” ― Yogi Berra

It is officially week 4 of the 30 weeks and 30 doable changes challenge. Download planning packet at plansimple.com/simplify2020

Each week I am suggesting a doable change that relates to planning your best, most well life. Each week, I am doing the change alongside you. Each week, I will have a short episode that goes along with the change.

Week 4. Plan your week. Last week, we focused on a big brain dump to get the clutter out of our heads and onto paper. This week, focus on writing down the things that really matter as you think through the week ahead. Having a paper planner may seem redundant, but there is magic in writing down your goals. So schedule it all: your food, lifestyle, and work in one place. So often we schedule work, doctor’s appointments, and kids activities, but we leave out the fun date nights, one-on-one time with our kids, and self-care time. Include the doable change you are focusing on. Plan for all of it on the same calendar! 

Refer to the Week-at-a-Glance Sheet in the planning packet that you can download at plansimple.com/simplify2020

 

Fat Positive with Nicola Salmon

Fat Positive with Nicola Salmon

February 13, 2020

It just sucks the whole joy out of life if you’re having to permanently be doing things all the time to keep your body small. – Nicola Salmon

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Nicola Salmon, a fat-positive fertility coach about weight and health. So often we equate thinner bodies or lower weight with health, which can have a terrible impact on people, especially women. 

Nicola was diagnosed with PCOS and was told early in life that she wouldn’t be able to have kids. The protocol was to lose weight, which put her into a yoyo of dieting and weight loss and gain. After a traumatic experience, she turned to acupuncture. As she did so, she made other tweaks in her life. It turned out she got pregnant more easily than expected and wondered if other people had a similar experience—and how she could help. 

We talk about how healthcare professionals can be misinformed and harmful when it comes to women’s weight and health, whether it is pregnancy-related or life in general. More importantly, we talk about practical steps you can take to make healthcare visits less triggering—things like not getting weighed unless there is a specific need to know your weight, asking about other options besides focusing on weight loss.

We talk about: 

  • The racial background of fat shaming
  • The importance of health-promoting behaviors vs. weight loss
  • Diversity and accessibility issues related to weight 
  • The problem with BMI
  • Teaching kids to embrace difference in bodies and about consent for their own bodies
  • Being kind and gentle to yourself and being in the body you are in

BIO

Nicola is a fat-positive and feminist fertility coach and author of “Fat and Fertile”. She advocates for change in how fat people are treated whilst accessing help with their fertility. Nicola supports fat people who want to get pregnant using her unique FAT+ve fertility framework to find their own version of health without diets, advocate for their bodies, relearn how to trust their body and believe in their ability to get pregnant in their current body.

LINKS

  • Instagram @fatpositivefertility
  • nicolasalmon.co.uk

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • STOP WEIGHING YOURSELF. Weighing yourself has no real benefit and can set you up. If you are in the habit of weighing yourself, see what happens if you stop.

  • ADVOCATE FOR YOURSELF. Take a different approach with your healthcare provider. Tell them you don’t want to be weighed (unless there is a specific reason, for example getting anaesthesia). If they simply tell you to work on weight loss, ask for other treatment options. What would they recommend to other patients? Push for the treatment that feels right to you.

  • HELP KIDS EMBRACE BODY DIFFERENCE. Talk about body diversity. Model how you want your kids to engage with people of all body shapes and sizes. Stop criticizing your own body or talking about what you want to change. Talk about what your body can do instead of what it looks like.

(Doable Change) Get it out of your head

(Doable Change) Get it out of your head

February 11, 2020

It is officially week 3 of the 30 weeks and 30 doable changes challenge. Download planning packet at plansimple.com/simplify2020

Each week I am suggesting a doable change that relates to planning your best, most well life. Each week, I am doing the change alongside you. Each week, I will have a short episode that goes along with the change.

Week 3. Get everything out of your head and onto paper. We talk about cleansing our bodies through diet and clearing clutter from our homes. This strategy is about clearing your head of clutter. We hold a lot in our heads. Getting everything out of our heads and onto paper frees up a lot of mental space for being present—and taking action on things that matter.

Refer to the Brain Dump Worksheet in the planning packet that you can download at plansimple.com/simplify2020

Remember, set a timer, and let it all out. Then set a timer again the next day and do the same. Do it for a few days until your mind feels clear. Put the paper away before your mind leads you back to overwhelm — really feel the emptiness.

 

Prep for Healthy with Allison Schaaf

Prep for Healthy with Allison Schaaf

February 6, 2020

Food is the F in FLOW, and it’s where my story starts, but lately, I feel like I’ve been talking less about food. So I’m really excited to talk with Allison Schaaf on this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast. Alison is a chef, nutritionist, registered dietician, and founder and CEO of Prep Dish, a meal planning company featuring gluten-free, paleo, and local foods. 

Having a plan reduces stress and helps you eat better. I’ve shared the tool of writing what’s for dinner on a Post-it in the morning. Allison agrees that the key to healthy eating is to not wait until dinner time to decide what is for dinner. Having a plan also cuts down on picky eating and struggling with kids at dinner time. Kids don’t have the capacity to answer the question of what’s for dinner. 

By taking a week's view, you can build in efficiency—having the same soup on Monday and Thursday so it doesn't feel like leftovers or making pesto to have on salmon on one day and on chicken later in the week, so it feels like a whole different meal. You have fewer things to prep, but also feel like you have variety. 

We talk about: 

  • Batching and prepping ahead, plus ideas on when to do it
  • Time upfront saving you time for the rest of the week
  • The importance of family meals and how planning and prepping ahead can change the whole feel of your evenings and give you more quality time 
  • Gluten-free, paleo, and keto options that allow people to try eating different ways to see what feels good for them (all real food, all with a focus on delicious)
  • The headspace planning opens up, plus getting past the mindset that food is a chore
  • Tips for the overwhelm of grocery shopping including online resources, curbside pick up organizing your list like your grocery store, and going alone

 

BIO

Allison Schaaf is a chef, nutritionist, registered dietician, and founder and CEO of Prep Dish. For six years and counting, Allison has made her way into the hearts and kitchens of home cooks all over the globe. Allison created Prep Dish after a decade as a personal chef and gourmet chef at high-end spas because she knew there was a more efficient, cost-effective, and sanity-saving way to put healthy, crowd-pleasing meals on the table. Her personal cooking style shifted after she experienced major changes in her health and appearance after adopting a gluten-free and Paleo-ish way of life. 

LINKS

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • KNOW WHAT’S FOR DINNER AHEAD OF TIME. Plan your week of meals every Friday. An even smaller Doable Change, write what’s for dinner on a Post-in in the morning, so you know. You can pick up anything you need while you are out for the day. You could even do a little prep while you make breakfast or lunches. But just knowing ahead can lessen the stress of dinner time. You can get a free two-week trial from PrepDish that tells you what to buy, what to prep ahead, and what do to each day.

  • CHECK YOUR MINDSET. Does dinner feel like a chore you have to do? Are you reluctant to commit to prep time because it seems like a lot of your Sunday? Notice how you feel about planning, prepping, and making dinner. What happens if you switch those thoughts around. I’m making food that gives me more energy and makes me feel great. I’m teaching my kids about being together as a family and eating healthy. I’m going to be so excited on Wednesday when dinner comes together so easily. What new story can you tell yourself to support healthy eating?

  • UPGRADE YOUR GROCERY SHOPPING. Choose one way to reduce grocery shopping stress. That might look like going alone (no meltdowns, no begging for foods you don’t want to buy). It might look like organizing your shopping list so that you flow effortlessly through the store. It might mean ordering staples online (or even putting them on repeat so you don’t even have to think about reordering). It might mean a delivery or curbside pick up option. Pick one thing to try. Experiment with building ease into grocery shopping. 
One Small Hack That Would Support Your Vision

One Small Hack That Would Support Your Vision

February 4, 2020

Week 2. What is one small hack that would support your vision?

This is a small action — a little thing that will help you move towards the vision you created last week — something you can start today! 

For example, Last year what stuck out to me was that I have a few big goals that I will need money to make happen. If I think too much about those goals, they feel impossible and overwhelming, but if I do something to move towards the money part, I feel better. So, my hack was to put money in my calendar — I scheduled bill due dates, weekly money meetings with myself every Wednesday, accountability calls with a friend, a money date with my husband (like mentioned in the episode with Bari Tessler.) These are all small tweaks that move me in the direction of being the person that I need to be to make my ideal scenario happen.

This year what stuck out how healthy I am in my 5-year vision. My hack, read The Hormone Cure.

What is your hack? How can you move forward today?

Download planning packet at plansimple.com/simplify2020

Lunar Abundance with Ezzie Spencer

Lunar Abundance with Ezzie Spencer

January 30, 2020

When we come in tune with the moon cycle, it's a way to come in tune with ourselves, and then when we come in tune with ourselves and our environment, there's an invitation to become more present.  – Ezzie Spencer

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Ezzie Spencer, author of the Lunar Abundance book and journal, and creator of Re. Love, about moon phases and how tuning into the moon affects us.  

Ezzie started her career in law focusing on domestic violence and women’s safety. When she realized something elemental was missing from her own life, she started to tune into her body's rhythms and cycles, and reconnected with the moon cycle. She began to notice patterns in her energy and her desires correlated to the cycle of the moon. 

She found that the moon cycles are not only a way to feel better and more energized, but also a way to be a lot more productive as a result. The moon cycle and our own corresponding cycles marry predictability and change. 

We talk about: 

  • Tracking the moon and letting it be a mirror to yourself
  • Slowing down to notice what we are feeling in the moment and connecting it to the moon cycle
  • Setting intentions at the new moon
  • Becoming more in tune to your intuition and able to separate from external voices
  • Showing up daily for our intentions as we move through other cycles of the moon
  • Moving into a more sustainable pattern of being and doing phases and learning to embrace the pause
  • Celebrating what we have achieved and received

BIO

Dr. Ezzie Spencer is a best-selling author and coach living in New York City. Starting out as a lawyer in Australia, Dr. Ezzie worked in the area of women’s safety, which led her to complete a Ph.D in emotional well-being after domestic abuse. During her doctorate, she started personally coaching women on well-being. First through her coaching, and then also her books, talks, retreats, and online platforms, Dr. Ezzie has supported tens of thousands around the world to heal and harness their personal power. Dr. Ezzie specializes in helping women recover from toxic relationships so they can rebuild epic self-confidence, rekindle their optimism about the future, and finally find the courage to put themselves back out there to attract real love.

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • TUNE IN TO THE MOON. Start by simply tracking the moon and noticing what’s happening. You can watch the moon or use a moon cycle planner. Then journal about how you are feeling, your energy, what you want, how your own cycle compares.

  • SET NEW MOON INTENTIONS. Use a lunar planner to find the next moon. Then use that time to set an intention. There is always another new moon, so there’s always an opportunity to start. Really ask yourself, what is it that I want to welcome into my life? Allow yourself to really listen to the answer from your heart and body wisdom. Think of it more about feeling than about a goal.

  • CELEBRATE. Take time to celebrate what you have acheived and what you have received. This practice can help you continue to trust and live with more ease and flow.