Are you stuck in that feeling of overwhelm? You know you want to be more organized (because let’s face it, things feel a little crazy sometimes), but you’re not quite sure where to start, what to do, or if this is just as organized as your life gets.
Getting more organized doesn’t have to be a huge task. It doesn’t mean you have to have a big life overhaul. Sometimes, it’s the smallest things that really do make the biggest difference.
Most of all, it comes down to the daily habits you create that help you to live a more organized life. Quick little things that you can do to have a big impact on your day.
Start with these simple things you can do each day to feel far more organized, be more productive, and be in control of your day!
1 – Write It All Down
This is always such a good go to when you’re feeling like you just have so much to do, when you’re being pulled in all kinds of directions, and when it’s difficult to figure out what your next step should be (because you have things to do and they all need to be done now).
Simply take a piece of paper, and write everything down that you’re thinking of.
It doesn’t have to be in any sort of order or make any sort of sense just yet, this process is about getting all of what’s going on in your head out of there and onto a page.
Once it’s all written out, you can start to sort through things, categorize things that need to be done, things that you need to make note of and remember, add important dates to your calendar or create reminders on your phone.
Tip #3 below is super helpful for this step as well!
2 – Tidy A Space
There are some days when the house is just chaos. I have two kids who are full of energy and leave a path of destruction wherever they go.
Right now I’m sitting looking at a pile of clothes that need to be folded and put away, clutter on my kitchen bench, 4 Hot Wheels cars, a backpack on the floor and various items of clothing of which I have no idea if they are clean or if the kids have just decided the middle of the room is a good place to leave a sock.
My point is, my house doesn’t stay tidy. And looking at all the areas that need to be tidied can be crazy overwhelming and make me want to retreat to my lounge chair with my crochet and binge watch Supernatural for the eleventy millionth time.
While that might make me feel better for a moment (or a few hours), what will actually have the payoff I’m chasing is simply tidying one area. Just one.
Sometimes this is enough to spark you to keep going and tidy more, but sometimes you stop at that one area and that’s totally okay too.
The point is, cleaning and tidying one area of the house is going to make you feel a whole lot more accomplished that if you retreated to the lounge to watch Netflix.
Even if that’s not what you’d do, even if it’s more about not having enough time in your day to do all the things – setting a timer for 10 minutes and going all for it on one specific area of the house is going to have a much bigger impact on your feeling of organization, your feeling of productivity, and your mood, than distractedly trying to tidy the whole house will.
Plus, if you only manage to get one area done each day, over the course of a week, that’s 7 areas tidied!
3 – Make Lists
Remember that brain dump in the first step? This is the follow on from that.
Lists are your absolute best friend when it comes to being more organized. And the best part is, you can create a list about anything (including creating a list of all the lists you want/need to write!!).
Some of my go to daily lists include:
- To Do List – (of course) that has my main 3 priorities at the very top
- Meal Plan – saves my sanity, saves a ton of money
- Grocery List – because I can never remember what groceries I need to get without one
- Daily Plan – a little different to a to do list, this groups my tasks for the day and shows my routine outline
- Weekly Planner – a quick reference to my weekly planner helps me keep track of what’s happening this week and if there’s anything I need to add to my daily plan
- Goals – I make sure I refer to my goals list every day so I can keep on track of my goals and make sure I’m working towards them every day.
While this looks like a huge list of lists, in reality it only takes a few minutes to refer to them each day and add to them if needed, but it saves me so much time and helps me feel so much more organized.
4 – Go For A Walk
It might sound counterproductive to do something like going for a walk when you seem to have so many things on your to do list, but a walk (even if it’s just 10 minutes) can help stimulate endorphins, help with blood circulation, help clear your mind, and increase serotonin (the happy hormone).
I often find when I go for a walk, I feel more energized and I feel like I can get so much more done in a day. Plus I feel like I’ve taken some time for myself for the day which does amazing things for my mental health.
Pop on a podcast or your favourite music and get outdoors for a stroll and fresh air. Make it a priority, and make it happen.
5 – Just Do One Thing
While my goal is to be super organized and have great routines and get all of my to do list done, there are days when it just all falls apart and there are days when it feels impossible to get anything productive done. It’s just the way things happen and it’s okay for there to be days like this.
On days like this, I simply try to just get one thing done.
That one thing might just be writing tomorrows to do list, unstacking the dishwasher, putting a load of washing on, or making one phone call I need to make.
The idea with this is that even by only doing one thing, you are still moving forward, still progressing, and still ticking at least one thing off your to do list. It really does make a difference.
This is also a great practice when you’re not quite sure what to do next, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, or if you feel like all of your things need to be done at once. Just start at the top of the list and do one thing.
6 – Create A Basic Routine
I don’t believe scheduling your day is the best practice, instead I encourage you to create a basic routine for your day.
Routines are my absolute favourite thing when it comes to productivity and organization. Not to be confused with schedules, which are more of a set time in which you do things, routines are more of a set order in which things happen.
Take your mornings for example; every morning you probably do roughly the same thing – you get up, make your coffee, have some breakfast, get ready for the day, and go to work.
But some days you might do these tasks in a different order, which seems like such a simple thing and not something that would make a big difference, afterall, you’re still getting everything done.
But the thing is, when you don’t have a routine, you increase the number of decisions you need to make in a day. Do you have your coffee first? Or do you get dressed? Do you workout in the morning or in the afternoon today? Do you take route A to work or route B?
When you have a routine, you eliminate these questions because you simply repeat the same process, in the same order each day. While it might sound boring, remember, you’re in control of your routine so you can make it whatever you want it to be.
We make so many decisions each day, and decision fatigue can lead to lower productivity and being disorganized. Help yourself out by creating daily routines.
Not sure what routines to create – here’s a guide to simple routines that will make a big difference to your day.
7 – Create Organization Goals
I love goals. I firmly believe everyone should have goals and be working towards those goals whether big or small. But have you ever thought about creating organization goals?
While wanting to ‘be more organized’ is a good start, what that looks like for you will be different to what it looks like for me, and as a simple statement like that, it’s impossible to measure.
How will you ever know if you’ve achieved your goal of ‘being more organized’ if you don’t have a way of measuring what that actually means?
Create goals around what kind of ‘organized’ you want to be. Be very specific. What does organized mean to you? What do you want your day to look like? How do you want to feel about your day?
Once you have these ideas down, you can start taking steps towards achieving your oganization goals.
Being more organized isn’t always such a huge task, sometimes all it takes a small things, like the tips outlined in this list, to help you combat overwhelm and not only feel more organized but actually be more organized each day.