Modern life can be hectic and out of control at times. It may feel like everything is happening all at once and you are finding it difficult to keep up. You can lose a lot of time, space and even money to disorganisation. According to a Harris Interactive study, disorganization results in 23% of adults not paying their bills on time and incurring late payment fees. Good organisational skills can lead to better decision making and problem-solving, and by having an uncluttered approach to life can even improve our career progression and opportunities.
We all need a little help from time to time but we can help ourselves day to day by creating helpful organisational habits to avoid any last-minute troubles.
Our memory can only hold so much information, and it’s inevitable that we will forget things. You can help yourself by creating to-do lists, shopping lists and lists of other important information we need to remember. This can be done on a piece of paper or digitally. This habit can be incredibly useful when we are feeling overwhelmed with worry before bedtime and struggling to get to sleep. An easy way to combat this is to create a list of your worries before bedtime and set a time the following day to address the list.
Tip: Always keep a notepad by your bed.
Smartphone tools like notion can help you organise your list and keep them on you at all times. Notion is an app that lets you keep multiple notes, to-do list and other information across multiple devices.
2. Use organisational tools
Traditional organisational tools include calendars, notebooks, post-its and files. Or if you prefer, there is an abundance of digital apps you can have on a tablet or smartphone that enables a paperless option. These tools enable us to track and trace our day to day activities and plan ahead. It may be useful to keep a daily or weekly diary to track our productivity or even our mental health.
3. Everything has a place
Things easily get lost if they don’t have a home. Try and get into the habit of having specific places for specific things that way you will be able to find specific items more efficiently. Organised people tend to store things properly and label their files. An article from The Daily Mail in 2012 states that we spend an estimated 3,680 hours in our lifetime searching for misplaced items. That’s 153 days in our life that are wasted!
Tip: keep storage spaces clutter-free!
Over time things accumulate and therefore create clutter. Organised people keep on top of their storage and filing by making time to declutter regularly. Unwanted and unnecessary items only create inefficient and unproductive space therefore creating unproductivity and inefficiency in our lives. You can declutter by selling items, donating items or even re-gifting.
For more information on how to declutter, see our related blog:
5. Don’t procrastinate
A useful rule to live by is: If you have a task that will take under 2 minutes to complete, then do it now! By completing tasks as soon as possible and not leaving them to do another day, you will thank yourself in the future. An ever-increasing to-do list will only cause strain on you in the future, and therefore a little effort today will mean less to-do tomorrow.
6. Use your time wisely
There are only 24 hours in a day. Most people sleep for 8 hours a day and go to work/ school for 8 hours also which only leaves us with 8 hours every day to be productive. During the remaining 8 hours of our day, we have to eat, go to the bathroom and commute which doesn’t leave that much time for ourselves each day. With the little time we have left, we have choices on how to use it. We can choose to become distracted by mindless social media and television, or we can choose to spend time with loved ones, working on our self-development or learning new things. By prioritising and organising the little time we have, we can accomplish so much. We all need time to unwind and relax, and there’s no harm in exploring social media and the TV guide from time to time, but we need to be mindful of unhealthy habits that do not serve us in the long-term. To help organise our time, dedicating certain days of the week to certain activities and tasks can help maximise your time and be beneficial for productivity, e.g. food shop on a Wednesday, household tasks on a Tuesday, visit family on a Saturday etc.
Tip: It may help to make a visual weekly timetable that can be easily seen in the home to keep on top of your schedule. This will also be a great reminder to plan ahead and prepare for the following day.
By Rachel at Cheswold Park Hospital