The most important part of being organized is the ability to make a list. This might sound easy but it is not. In fact, an unorganized or poorly put together list could quite possibly do more harm than good. Hone your list building skills before you make any serious attempt at making a list for your wedding planning. First, write down all the things you need to accomplish to have a great wedding. You might say, that is a list, but it is not. When you have written down everything you need, you have a fair idea of what to do but that is all. Now you need to make a list for each item on your "need" list. These lists should encompass the steps you have to take to achieve each item.
Separate your caterer list from your to do list from your guest list from your wish list and so on. If you have coffee and tea wedding favors and chocolate wedding favors on the same list as Chicken or beer and wine, then you have two or more lists combined and you will need to work it out. Wedding favors should go either on your Guest To Do list, or your Early Purchases list. Food and beverages go with the Caterer To Hire or What To Serve list. Do you follow where I am going wit this? It all comes down to well organized and thorough list building.
Now that you have your lists put together and well organized, it is time to start putting your plans into action. If you are in this all alone, now is the time to pick up the phone and start recruiting help. You will need it and lots of it. Close, trusted friends and family members are more than willing and down right flattered to be asked to help you fulfill your dream of a perfect wedding. Odds are that the people you ask to help you either have a similar dream or are living it. Orchestrate your new workforce into separate task forces that are fitted to individual strengths. If you are not good at finding or recognizing what people are good at, ask them. Most people know their limitations and strengths and can tell you what they can or cannot do to help. You may even find someone in the crowd who can help you streamline those lists!
Okay, you have your lists, your lists of your lists, and a motivated task force that is ready to serve you. What is next? Prioritize your lists into smaller lists of what--on each list--needs to be done first. Many of the items on a wedding planning list will be time sensitive, meaning that they must be done by a certain point in the wedding planning process before other items can be started. A good example of this is theme and color coordination. You will have to pick out a color scheme and theme before the food is decided upon or the decorations are purchased, otherwise, you will be doing many of your tasks more than once, wasting precious time and resources that you just do not have. Before this is done, you have to have a working budget and that needs to be broken down into mini budgets for each category, the sum of which cannot surpass the total of the bottom line budget. This is a budget list and it is the most important list you will build.
The bottom line is this. You cannot plan a wedding without a good, solid grasp of how to build a list. So get out there and learn this all-important task before you start and save yourself valuable time, money, and headache.
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