Managing To-Do's

Packing for a trip is just like time management

December 20, 2022

I’m Kelly Nolan.
I'm an attorney who'd been decently organized through law school but got quickly overwhelmed as a actual attorney. After nothing else worked for me, I created this system – and kept on practicing law. Years later, I found out others were interested in learning it, so that's what I do now! Let's get this realistic system in your hands so you can start living a life that feels more calm, doable, and that lights you up.
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Let’s say you’re going on a road trip to visit a friend.

You start tossing clothes onto your bed. Because you’re driving, you’re a little more liberal about what you pick since you have a whole car-full of space.

Then, you realize – agh, no, you’re not driving – you’re flying.

You pull out a suitcase and look at your pile of clothes.

You’re tempted to “cram-and-pray” it all in there, but you know it all wouldn’t fit and who knows what would actually make it in – and what would get left behind.

So, you make decisions. What do you need and want?

You pack your now-smaller pile of clothes in the suitcase. It’s tight, but you make it work.

Gah! You realize you forgot your underwear, bras, socks, and your bathroom stuff.

You gather them up, try to squeeze it in, can’t, and so you take a few pairs of pants out to make room.

One last thing, you’re going shopping one day you’re there. Might as well take one more outfit out so you have space for whatever you buy.


Most people (including myself) before the Bright Method think they’re packing for a road trip. They say “yes” to too many things because they think they have room – when in reality, they just have a suitcase they can fill.

Between the limits of a suitcase (i.e., your awake hours and energy) and the need to bring the underwear & basics (i.e., all of those things you do almost every day that take up so much space, like walking your dog and showering and getting ready), there’s a lot less room for those one-off outfits (e.g., one-off projects) than we thought.

This can be frustrating. BUT IT’S REALITY. And when we accept reality, we start making the DECISIONS we NEED to make – decisions about what you need and want to do and how to get rid of the rest.

Make sure you understand the dimensions of your suitcase, the size of your basics, and what outfits you actually need and want to pack. Leave some wiggle room for the things that come up along the way that you’ll want to say yes to.

Don’t “cram-and-pray” and end up with who knows what in there.

Accept reality, make decisions in light of it, and you’ll have more enjoyable, comfortable trip.

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