Tips for Getting Organized
With today’s busy pace and lifestyle, it’s hard to do things well when you’re not in peak form so here are some tips for getting organized, I hope they will help you as much as they have helped me! Over the last year I’ve been running a business, building a house and had major surgery. I couldn’t have done all these things without being organized and having some kind of system to keep track of everything.
Tips for Getting Organized
1. Write everything down
Making to-do lists is a great start! Often I fall into the trap of scribbling notes down on random pieces of paper, only to find that I’ve lost that piece of paper by the end of the day. Having a set list that you can write all your notes on is great and will help you keep all your notes in order. It’s also a good way to prioritize jobs in order of importance. Personally, I love the feeling of ‘ticking off’ each task as I get it done, it makes me feel great!
2. Must Do and Can Do
A business mentor once said this to me; there are must do jobs and can do jobs. It’s important to know the difference. On my to-do list, I write all my ‘must’ do jobs at the top of the list, and then all my ‘can’ do jobs further down. This works great for me because I used to feel like I wasn’t getting enough done in a day and so many items on my list were still un-ticked. This way, I can still feel good as I tick things off my list from the must do section, but it’s ok if I don’t get to the other items – they can go on tomorrow’s list.
3. Get a Notebook or Journal
I love writing things down so much that I usually run out of my space on my to-do list. The problem is, a to-do list is just that, and it doesn’t have room for you to write down everything thought that pops into your head during the day. So, all that other stuff? Write it down in a journal or notebook. Personally I love tabbed notebooks that help separate different topics. Ones that are spiral bound are even better so that you can easily tear a page out if need be.
4. Give Yourself deadlines
‘Deadline’ is often a word that makes people shudder at the thought, followed up by late nights desperately trying to get all the work done. Deadlines aren’t there just to trip you up or add pressure. Having them in place can help you organise your goals and prioritise the most important ones first. They also help you to know what is coming up, so that you can make room for it in your schedule – and not get caught out last minute.
5. Tackle One Job at a Time
It’s easy to get carried away with a million different ideas floating around in your head. This is where being disciplined and sticking to your order of priorities comes in handy. By doing one job at a time and just focusing on that job, you are much more productive and faster at what you are doing. You will also have the benefit of feeling good when the job is done, rather than having ten unfinished jobs piling up on your desk at the end of the day.
6. Use Your Calendar Well
Get yourself a calendar, but also know how to use it well. Do you have some larger goals for the year ahead? Schedule them into your calendar, with mini deadlines along the way. If there is something you want to achieve by the end of the year, can you break it up into smaller steps? If so, what would you like to have achieved in 3 months time? Put it into your calendar and keep to the deadlines you give yourself.
7. Last but not Least, Be Realistic
Before we run off and get too carried way with things, this is my favourite part: be realistic. It seems like we’re all natural born experts on scheduling far too much for ourselves. No one has to teach us that; somewhere we just know how to do it and run ourselves ragged. I used to think that I was good at time management because I was able to schedule a million things into my week and work myself to the bone, frantically diving from one meeting to another. By the end of the week I would feel worn out from what I’d done, and over time, to be honest, not very happy as a whole. When I tried to figure out what the issue was, I realised I’d be much happier if I was kinder to myself. I started to schedule goals that were more realistic, and also gave myself the appropriate amount of time to get everything done. Have your goals, have your deadlines, but be kind to yourself in the process. Life isn’t just about achieving things and getting your to-do list done.