How I Spend a GYST Day

How I Spend a GYST Day

In the fast-paced world we live in, taking a day to get your life together is essential for maintaining balance and productivity. For me, a GYST (Get Your Sh!t Together or Get Your Stuff Together) day is a lifesaver. It’s a day dedicated to resetting, organizing, and preparing for the days ahead. In this blog post, I’ll walk you through what a GYST day is and how I spend mine, breaking down the tasks that help me stay on top of everything.

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What is a GYST Day?

A GYST day is a dedicated time to focus on personal organization, productivity, and self-care. It’s about taking control of the small tasks that accumulate over time and can overwhelm us if left unchecked. This day isn’t just about cleaning and tidying up; it’s about setting yourself up for success in the coming days and weeks. It’s a holistic approach to life management that includes everything from chores and planning to self-care and mental decluttering.

For those of us who are neurodivergent or live with chronic illness, the concept of a GYST day can be particularly beneficial. After all, managing day-to-day tasks can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with fluctuating energy levels, cognitive challenges, or physical symptoms. A GYST day provides a structured yet flexible approach to tackling these tasks, helping to reduce anxiety and improve overall quality of life.

For neurodivergent people, routines and organization can be key to managing executive dysfunction and maintaining mental health. A GYST day allows for a dedicated time to reset, ensuring that important tasks are not forgotten and providing a clear framework to navigate the week ahead. This regular practice can help create a sense of control and predictability, which is crucial for managing stress and maintaining focus.

Similarly, those of us with chronic illness often have to balance our energy and health needs carefully. A GYST day can be customized to fit these unique requirements, allowing for breaks and prioritizing essential tasks without causing burnout. By spreading out these tasks and creating a manageable schedule, we can better handle responsibilities while respecting both mental and physical limitations. This proactive approach helps to prevent the buildup of tasks that can become overwhelming and ensures that self-care remains a priority—not just something we ideally want to prioritize.

My Weekly Planning Checklist

My GYST day typically starts with planning for the week:

1. Brain Dump

I start by jotting down all the thoughts, tasks, and ideas floating around in my head. This process helps clear mental clutter, prioritize tasks, and reset my focus no what truly matters.

In addition to using my brain dump trigger list (included in the printable above!), I also love this video by MuchelleB.

2. Check Calendars and Update Planners

Synchronizing my digital and physical calendars and keeping my planners up to date with appointments and deadlines is crucial. This practice keeps me prepared and on schedule, preventing double-booking and missed appointments. It also lets me reassess my various commitments and rearrange them as needed to better accommodate my chronic fatigue and other inflexible symptoms.

3. Update To-Do Lists

With any upcoming events top of mind, reviewing and updating my to-do lists ensures nothing is forgotten and helps in prioritizing tasks. A clear to-do list provides a roadmap for the week, making it easier to manage tasks, even when it feels like the list is never-ending! I alternate between using digital tools or traditional notebooks to keep track of my top priority tasks for a given week, adapting to whatever method suits me best at that time.

4. Plan Out Outfits

Choosing outfits for the week avoids morning indecision and saves time. Using the Whering app to plan ahead simplifies my morning routine and ensures I always look my best…or, at the very least, I can change out of PJs *most* days! I make a point to proactively add any new clothing to my digital closet and generate a few new outfits every so often. This way, I always have something wonderful to shuffle through when planning the week ahead!

5. Meal Planning & Meal Prep

Creating a meal plan with Paprika and preparing ingredients or entire meals ahead of time ensures healthy eating and reduces stress during the week. Meal planning also saves money and reduces food waste! I start by considering the ingredients I currently have—though I rarely remember to keep the fantastic pantry inventory feature in the app updated! I think comapre these ingredients to the recipes saved in Paprika. Using this information, I fill out my meal plan with for the coming week and fill out my meal plan for the coming week and fill in any gaps with “emergency” meals—simple basics I can almost always pull together with what I have between grocery trips.

Once I have the week’s meals planned, I take note of anything that needs to be prepped in advance. This might involve baking a bread product and/or treats, putting together overnight oats, or cleaning any fruits or veg! All of these steps take time, of course, but help prevent me from calling a sleeve of saltine crackers a meal!

6. Budgeting

Finally (for this step!), reviewing and updating my budget helps track expenses and manage finances effectively. Regular budgeting keeps me aware of my financial status and helps plan for future expenses. Right now, I’m not bringing in a ton of income…so this is a pretty fast step most weeks!

My Weekly Reset Checklist

After planning, I move on to my weekly reset:

1. 5 Things Tidy

I begin my weekly reset by addressing the essential tasks that keep my living space clean and organized. Inspired by KC Davis, I starty by tackling any trash, recycling, dishes, or laundry in my space. Putting away laundry completes the laundry cycle and keeps my space organized.

Afterward, a quick sweep of common areas prevents clutter from accumulating and creates a welcoming space. This small effort can make my home feel more organized and peaceful, even if day-to-day life may be anything but!

2. Everything Shower

Next, I indulge in an “everything shower,” a thorough routine that includes all the pampering steps like exfoliating, deep conditioning, and shaving. This routine is essential for feeling refreshed and confident. Taking an “everything shower” helps rejuvenate my skin and hair, boosting my overall sense of well-being.

Check out my full skincare routine for more!

Here’s a brief breakdown of my process:

  • Oral hygiene
  • Scalp treatments
  • Dry brushing
  • Deep facial cleanse
  • Clarifying shampoo
  • Scalp mask
  • Exfoliation
  • Body wash
  • Shaving
  • Skincare

Shop my everything shower essentials!

3. Charge Devices

Keeping all my gadgets charged ensures I’m always ready for work, communication, and entertainment. This includes my Airpods, mouse, Apple Pencil, headphones & Shokz, sleep headphones, Switch, Kindle, portable chargers, and other gadgets. Fully charged devices mean I (usually) won’t be caught off guard by low battery warnings during important tasks!

4. Home Maintenance

Hot girls have sinus issues, and a humidifier (sometimes) helps! Humidifier maintenance is crucial for ensuring clean air quality and preventing any extrarespiratory issues. Regular cleaning and refilling keep my humidifier running efficiently.

I also wash accessories like my daily-wear bracelets, earplugs, cups, and bottles to maintain personal hygiene and prevent bacteria build-up. This routine helps avoid potential health issues and keeps my items looking new. Finally, purging and tidying up the fridge keeps my food fresh and prevents wastage. Regularly organizing the fridge ensures I use items before they expire and maintain a clean space.

5. Health Maintenance

Staying on top of medication and supplements is a vital part of spoonie life. I set a routine for refilling my pill case, checking my medication, vitamin, and supplement inventories, and filling up the mini water cooler I keep on hand. This way, I always have a drink available when it’s time to take my meds, helping me to not miss a dose.

6. General GYST Tasks

Keeping my various digital or physical trackers current helps manage habits and progress. Whether it’s my bullet journal, Passion Planner, or Notion, these tools track everything from fitness goals to work tasks, providing a clear picture of my progress. Going through mail regularly prevents important documents from getting lost and manages clutter. Additionally, backing up Google Photos ensures my memories are safely stored without overloading my phone’s storage. Regular backups protect digital memories from accidental loss, keeping everything organized and accessible.

7. Self-Care Tasks

Once general GYST habits are taken care of, I move on to some self-care routines, such as giving myself a mani/pedi. Taking time for personal grooming can be a relaxing and rewarding activity. Additionally, tasks like journaling help with mental clarity and goal-setting, writing down thoughts and plans can reduce stress and improve focus.

My Monthly Planning Checklist

At least once a month, I extend my GYST day to include a monthly planning session:

1. Review and Set Goals

Reflecting on my goals and setting new ones for the coming month keeps me motivated and on track. Regular goal setting helps maintain focus and drive. For an extra boost, check out the incredible passion roadmap printable free from our friends at Passion Planner!

2. Update Financials and Calendars

Reviewing and updating my budget helps manage finances effectively. This process more intensive than my weekly budget update, logging not just any income or expenses but updating savings and investing trackers, debt payoff, and other larger financial goals.

3. Reviewing Calendars and To-Do Lists

Ensuring my monthly calendar and planners are up to date keeps me prepared for upcoming events and tasks. These regular updates prevent surprises and help in planning my time efficiently! Sure, I might not remember that webinar between now and when I get an alert on the day of…but my planners will!

Refreshing my to-do lists with new tasks and goals also helps to ensure continuous progress. Regular updates keep my to-do lists relevant and actionable, and make sure I don’t leave certain tasks lingering indefinitely.

3. Reading Review

I grew up hyperlexic, so it’s no surprise that reading is prety crucial to my everyday life. My goal is to get through four books each month: a poetry book, a fiction book, and two non-fiction—one for general learning and one for self-development. While this doesn’t always happen, I enjoy having an idea of what books *could* be next up on my lengthy TBR list.

I also take this opportunity to check in with my reading journal. Right now, I’m using a Goodnotes journal from hanri Studio! I’ll take a few minutes to copy covers, add details, and copy any quotes from my Kindle or analog annotations! This routine not only tracks my progress but also enriches my reading experience.

My Monthly Reset Checklist

The monthly reset involves deeper cleaning and maintenance tasks:

1. Deep Cleaning

I start by washing makeup brushes to prevent bacteria build-up and keep my skin healthy. Regular cleaning ensures better makeup application and skin care. Next, I descale the coffee machine to ensure my coffee tastes great and the machine lasts longer. Regular maintenance prevents buildup that can affect flavor and performance.

Cleaning or replacing filters is crucial for maintaining appliance efficiency and air quality. This regular upkeep extends the life of my appliances and improves their performance. Polishing jewelry is another important task; it keeps my accessories looking new. Regular cleaning ensures my jewelry remains shiny and free from tarnish.

2. Decluttering

Decluttering spaces around the house helps keep my environment organized and stress-free. This practice can significantly improve mental clarity and create a more enjoyable living space.

Shredding documents is crucial for protecting against identity theft and reducing paper clutter. Disposing of sensitive documents is a key step in maintaining privacy. Additionally, cleaning out my purse and backpack prevents the build-up of unnecessary items and keeps things organized. Regularly going through these items ensures I only carry what I need and makes it easier to find items when I need them.

2. Social Tasks

Preparing and sending greeting cards keeps me connected with loved ones. These gestures show I care and help maintain and strengthen personal relationships.

3. Digital Reset

Deep charging devices like speakers, massagers, neck fans, and other gadgets ensures all gadgets are ready when needed. Regular charging prevents inconvenient interruptions. Additionally, purging unnecessary emails reduces digital clutter and improves productivity. Keeping my inbox organized helps me stay on top of important communications.

How Often Should You Schedule a GYST Day?

The frequency of your GYST day depends on your personal needs and lifestyle. I aim to have a GYST day weekly because it helps me stay on top of tasks and prevents them from piling up. A weekly schedule allows for regular maintenance and planning, keeping me organized and reducing stress. However, your GYST day can be adapted to fit your schedule. If a weekly GYST day feels overwhelming or unnecessary, you can opt for a bi-weekly or monthly routine. The key is to find a balance that works for you and helps you stay organized without adding extra pressure.

For those with a hectic schedule or many responsibilities, a weekly GYST day might be beneficial. It ensures that no task is left unattended for too long and helps maintain a steady rhythm. On the other hand, if your routine is relatively stable and tasks don’t accumulate quickly, a monthly GYST day might suffice. This allows for a thorough reset and deep cleaning without the need for frequent interventions.

How to Create Your Own GYST Day

Creating your own GYST day can be transformative, allowing you to stay organized, reduce stress, and improve your overall quality of life. Here’s a step-by-step guide to setting up your own GYST day:

1. Identify Your Needs

Start by assessing your tasks. List out all the tasks that often get neglected or pile up during the week or month. This could include household chores, personal care routines, planning activities, and self-care practices. Determine which tasks are most important for you to feel organized and in control.

2. Set a Schedule

Choose a day that works best for you to dedicate to getting your stuff together. This could be a weekend day or a day off. Allocate specific time blocks for different types of tasks. For example, you might spend the morning on household chores, the afternoon on planning and organizing, and the evening on self-care.

3. Create Checklists

Make a list of tasks to complete every week, such as tidying up, doing laundry, and planning meals. Include tasks like updating calendars, planning outfits, and setting your to-do list. Add deeper cleaning and maintenance tasks that only need to be done once a month, like descaling the coffee machine or purging emails. Focus on longer-term planning and goal setting, updating your budget, and choosing new books to read.

4. Gather Supplies

Ensure you have all the necessary cleaning products and tools. Have your planners, calendars, to-do lists, and digital trackers ready. Gather any self-care products you’ll need, like skincare items, nail polish, or bath products.

5. Stick to the Plan

Dedicate yourself to following through with your GYST day regularly. Consistency is key to reaping the benefits. Be flexible and adjust your checklist and routine as needed. What works one month might need tweaking the next.

A GYST day is more than just a day of chores; it’s a day of self-care and organization that helps me stay on top of my responsibilities and goals. By dedicating a day to reset and plan, I ensure that I’m prepared for whatever comes my way, feeling refreshed and in control. If you’ve never had a GYST day, I highly recommend giving it a try. It might just become your favorite day of the week, too.

Taking the time to reset and plan can transform your productivity and well-being. Whether you adopt a few of these practices or implement a full GYST day, the key is finding what works best for you and making it a regular part of your routine. By doing so, you can stay organized, reduce stress, and enjoy a more balanced and fulfilling life.

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