By Kayla Boyd
Organization is a surprisingly tricky thing. As people with jobs, projects, side hustles, and some kind of social life (hopefully), it can be hard to get a grip of our hectic schedules and feel like we “have it all together.” Of course there’s no one way to get and stay organized. You have to figure out what works best for you and your day-to-day life. These tips can be a great way to get started. Whether you consider yourself to be super organized or a bit all over the place , it never hurts to try new methods and start new habits that’ll benefit you in the long run — and hopefully give you some peace of mind too.
Here are 10 life organization tips that’ll help set you up for success:
- Create a morning routine. This one can be a bit challenging for people who may not consider themselves to be “morning people” (myself included). But, having a morning routine is a great way to help you feel motivated and ready for the day. Everyone’s morning looks different depending on your work schedule, family dynamic, etc, but here are a few things to consider adding to your morning routine:
- Wake up with some coffee, tea, or a protein shake. Don’t forget to drink some water too!
- Eat breakfast. Even something small can give you that push of energy you need.
- Meditate and/or take a few moments for gratitude. You can jot down a few things you’re feeling thankful for in order to get the positivity flowing or you can simply think them to yourself as you enjoy a few moments of quiet.
- Exercise. This one may not work for everyone in the morning and that’s totally fine! But, if you do find yourself with time in the morning to do some yoga or go for a jog, then it can be a great way to get your blood pumping — and you won’t have to try to force yourself to do it after work.
- Plan out your day. (See the next tip for more details.)
- Make lists. Making a to-do list can be incredibly helpful for prioritizing your tasks. These can be done weekly, but a daily to-do list is best for narrowing down what you can realistically accomplish. I’m personally guilty of creating a to-do list that’s so long, it would take me weeks to accomplish what I *think* needs to be done that day. A way that I battle this is by having some overall tasks I want to accomplish for the month and then narrowing them down to a smaller list every week and then every day. However, if that’s a little too intense for you, just start with a daily top three. Every day, prioritize three tasks that must get done that day. This will help you focus on what is actually possible and you’ll feel much more accomplished at the end of the day as opposed to staring at a 25-item list with only two things checked off (been there).
- Start using a planner or digital calendar. Having a monthly and weekly view of your schedule can help drastically when it comes to making sure you don’t miss an appointment, event, or birthday. Physically writing things down can help you remember them better, but if you’ve tried planners before and it wasn’t your thing, you can also use a Google calendar to fill in your plans. Additionally, there are TONS of different planner formats to choose from (undated planners, academic planners, bullet journals, and so on). There are also hundreds of calendar apps out there. Don’t be intimidated or concerned if the first thing you try doesn’t work for you. Finding the right way to organize your plans can be a bit of a trial and error.
- Start budgeting. Keeping track of where your money is going is another important way to stay organized. Waking up and realizing that your bank account balance is way lower than you thought it was is not a happy surprise. So by tracking your budget with an app or spreadsheet, you’ll be able to better avoid overspending. And make sure you’re putting a little something into a savings account as well!
- Invest in home organization products. Keeping your closet, bathroom toiletries, craft supplies, etc. organized is a major part of making your day run more smoothly. By investing in things like storage containers, desk organizers, a closet system, and more you’ll be able to find a place for everything you own. Keeping your home tidy will not only help you find things easier, but it’ll also just make you feel good.
- Schedule in some downtime. No matter how busy you get, rest and self-care are ALWAYS important. And if you want to stay on top of your game, then setting aside time to breath is vital. Whether you enjoy watching Netflix, reading, or painting, you should make time to indulge in your hobbies every week.
- Plan your meals and keep a running grocery list. This not only makes it easier to eat healthier, but it also takes away some of the stress of figuring out what to eat after a particularly long day.
- Organize the files and apps on your electronics. From your desktop at work to your phone, keeping your devices organized can also make daily tasks more efficient. Sort things into files and delete the documents, pictures, and apps that you no longer need so they’re not just taking up storage space.
- Make a cleaning schedule. Set aside certain days for cleaning the bathroom, sweeping, doing laundry, etc. That way you never have to worry about how long it’s been since you last dusted.
- Set goals. You can visualize your goals in a vision board, a list, a journal or however you want, but the most important thing is to be specific and intentional. Set personal and professional goals for yourself that are realistic (but don’t be afraid to dream big either). Give yourself timelines for what you want to accomplish your goals and make sure they’re written somewhere that you can see often as a constant reminder.