Organizational Sunday Challenge #16: The Menu Plan

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girl21.jpgHeather says:

Recently we worked through organizing the kitchen (see Challenges 6 – 10) if you want to play catch-up. Today we’re going to combine the kitchen organization with our last couple of weeks of financial focus. I want to be very, very clear. I absolutely know that little tips like not buying convenience items can make someone who is facing a mountain of debt laugh hysterically. I know you cannot get water from a stone. I know this. In general, suggestions here are for those who are slowly sinking into debt through less than careful choices or are trying to get out from under student loans or have a few bad choices to undo.

I know everyone is tired of hearing brew your coffee at home instead of out and save $4 a day. I’ll try my best to refrain from those types of suggestions. Just be cognizant of these things as you make the choice to hit the drive through for a venti latte. (I’m guilty, too!)

I’ve written a series – learning to menu plan which I think I’m going to turn into an ebook, just for ease of consumption.

Menu planning saves time, energy, and money. You don't have to wait until you are an accomplished cook to start. This is the couch 2 5k of feeding yourself healthy, budget conscious food.

This week your challenge is to sit down and plan your menu. <– that is a free printable to make the process a little easier. If you need flexibility, build it into the plan. Don’t forget to account for leftovers. If you don’t like eating the same thing several days in a row, by all means, freeze everything you can and save it for a week or two down the road.

If you need ideas, there are many sample menus on this site. Just search Menu Monday to get started.

While you’re planning your menu, create your shopping list, and add any reminders to your To-Do List or App right now. (Those reminders are things like “Pull the chicken from the freezer, soak the beans.”)

It’s not too hard. This week also keep track of what you didn’t spend on eating out. Make a plan for that saved money: add it to your emergency fund, put it towards your debt, save it for a splurge you will remember, not just another drive-through-dinner.

See you next week!

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2 thoughts on “Organizational Sunday Challenge #16: The Menu Plan”

  1. I long resisted the idea of meal-planning because I didn’t like the idea of being inflexible or routine. However. I did give it a try once when life was going to be really busy for a while and I couldn’t believe how much I liked it! For me the main benefit was that I’d do my thinking and decision-making on Sunday when my brain was fresh, instead of each weeknight after I had been making decisions all day long and just could face one more decision. So much less wasted food. So much less fretting all week long. So much less take out. I still let the planning slip some times.
    The thinking that helped me overcome it is, “I rule my routines, they do not rule me.” I came to this when I had decided to have a target dinner-time. Target dinner time and meal-planning made a huge improvement in my life. No exaggeration.

    • Decision making fatigue is a huge thing. By the time it is nearing dinner time, having to make a choice after making all the other decisions I’ve done during the day, is frustrating.
      I just read Your Brain at Work by David Rock and it explained how much actual energy -not woo woo mystical energy- is consumed by your brain during decisions. By the evening, if you’ve been taxed all day, it just isn’t going to happen.
      I think I’m going to pick up The Power of Habit next, I’m working to reduce the number of decisions I make each day to free up a little energy for the things I want to do.

      Thanks for the comment 🙂


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