Learn this easy hack to help you stop forgetting the daily essentials you need when you leave the house in the morning.
Leaving the house in the morning can be a little stressful, am I right? Especially when you’re trying to keep up with Littles, grab all the stuff you need for the day, make sure they have all their stuff, and juggle the prep and routines to actually get yourself out the door. Whew! I’m exhausted just thinking about it! I developed this hack a long time ago when I was working my 9-5 and running the blog on the side, because I was always getting halfway through my commute and realizing I forgot something.
I realized that I’ve never even shared this life-changing habit on the blog, so today I’m going to teach you my secret method for remembering your daily essentials in the midst of crazy-busy mornings.
How To Stop Forgetting Things Before Leaving For Work In The Morning
“Phone, key, key, computer, glasses, wallet.”
I recited that phrase every single morning before I walked out the door to go to work.
Out loud. I said the words out loud and I physically touched each item.
Ask my son and he’ll tell you about all the times he made fun of me for this, but you’ll also catch him doing the same thing when he thinks no one is looking. It may seem silly, but it works.
Step One: List Your Daily Essentials
Start by grabbing a scrap sheet of paper and write down the main things you need for work every single day. I’ll help you out by reminding you that you definitely need your phone and keys, so put those at the top.
What else do you use daily? Do you carry a purse or a loose wallet? Do you have reading glasses? Do you bring a laptop or tablet to work? Do you have a binder or planner you keep with you? What about recurring medicines, a sweater for chilly offices, and entry badge, or a lunchbox?
Make sure the items on your list are things you use every single day, not just occasionally. There’s another method for the occasional use stuff.
Got your list? Ok, let’s start building a habit!
Step Two: Build A Habit
Now that you’ve figured out what you need to remember, it’s time to train yourself. Grab a post-it note and write the items from your scribbled up, crossed out, messy scrap sheet of paper in a neat, specific order. Stick that post-it note on the door that you use to enter and leave your house.
Seeing that post-it note will remind you to go through the list and eventually make it second nature not to walk out the door without reciting it. I know, this sounds a little unnecessary, but you’re reading this because you forgot your house keys three times last month…remember?
Going Through The List
In order to make this process effective, you’ve got to do it in the same order every single time. That’s the reason why we start with the post-it note.
If I tried to say “key, computer, phone, wallet, key, glasses” I’d be so thrown off. Truth, I couldn’t even type that without stopping and running through my list in my head!
So as you go out the door, recite your list, same order, same way, and touch the item so you know you have it. Yes, I actually did open my purse and touch my wallet inside every morning. Because sometimes it was on the dining room table. No assuming allowed, ok friend?
After about a month of doing this, you won’t need that post-it note anymore. It will be stuck in your head forever. Seriously.
I left my day job to run the blog full time six months ago, and I still say the same list when I leave the house just to go to Target. I don’t need my computer anymore, but I just can’t seem to get it off my mental list. That’s how I know this will work for you too.
Bonus Tip For Remembering If You Locked The Door
If you have a hard time remembering if you locked the door, turned off your straightener, or refilled the water bowl before you headed off to work, I have a sneaky little hack to help jog your memory. This was actually shared with me by my friend Racheal @banyanbridges and I’ve been using it ever since.
Racheal told me to do something ridiculously silly after locking the door so I’ll remember later. I mean ridiculously silly. Like a crazy dance, a weird wiggle, shouting a funny word, or spinning around three times.
Just breaking away from your mindless routine of running out the door and doing something like this causes a pattern interrupt, which you will definitely remember later. You might not be able to recall if you locked the door, but you sure will remember how badly you failed at pulling off that TikTok dance move your teenager did yesterday.
- Grab a scrap sheet of paper, a pen, and a post-it note.
- List your daily essentials on the scrap sheet and edit as necessary.
- Write your finalized short list of necessities on a post-it note in numbered order.
- Put the post-it note on your entry door.
- Before leaving the house, recite the list in the same order out loud and touch each item as you say it.
- If you are missing something, go get it, then start the list again from the top.
- After about a month you won’t need the post-it note anymore and you’ll never forget your stuff again.