An organized life is fundamental to success, whether you are a student, a working professional, or a busy executive. If you struggle to get things done because of an unorganized life, here are eight practical steps you can take to help you put your life back on track.
First Things First, Compartmentalize Your Life
An organized lifestyle begins with compartmentalizing your life and setting goals around the key roles you play. We have different areas of our lives competing for our time and attention. The key to an organized life is to avoid allocating an inordinate amount of time in one aspect at the expense of another. For example, spending too much time out with friends will take time away from your family, and vice versa.
Imagine your life a giant pie with 168 slices. How do you want to spend it? You don’t need to follow this process to the letter, but use it as a technique to keep you accountable for how you use your time.
Create Daily Schedules
You may wonder why this article seems like those on time management, that’s because organized people know the value of time.
If in the first step you gave yourself a holistic view of how you plan to spend your time each week, in this step, you divide it further. You decide how you would spend your twenty-four hours. How much sleep will you get? How much time do you spend eating? What proportion of your time goes to leisure? Assign some time to those activities and adhere to them.
Take Time Off the Internet
We live in a world of endless opportunities. Only three decades ago, answering or writing emails would have required reaching a place with a computer. But the proliferation, affordability of smart devices, and the internet have enabled us to be reachable anywhere, anytime.
That perpetual internet connectivity has created enormous time management challenges. To stay organized, limit your online access. For instance, set a specific time to respond to emails, text messages, or any other way people reach you. If you don’t control the never-ending influx of tasks coming your way, you will struggle to stay organized.
Even with the best time management plan, many people defer important tasks. Procrastination is the number one enemy of an organized and productive life. Benjamin Franklin’s famous quote, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today,” is powerful advice for those of us who want to live an organized lifestyle. What is one task you have been postponing? Now could be the moment you decide to act on it.
Keep Your Home and Workspace Organized
An unorganized workspace or a cluttered home are the catalyst to an unorganized life. Just like you create structure in how you use your time, you must assign a place to every item in your home and your workspace. Simply making the bed in the morning or tidying your desk after a workday are an effective way to start and maintain an organized lifestyle.
The more objects you possess, the more cluttered your space will be. Therefore, decluttering frequently will give you control over your physical environment. Keep those items you use regularly at arm’s length and put away those you seldom use.
Don’t Let Perfection Get in the Way
Do you know those people who spend hours on tasks that normally require minutes to complete? Such a perfectionist behavior can create chaos in your life. You don’t have to label everything in your home, or put objects in a certain position in your drawers (unless you can afford to pay someone to do it). You only need to keep things in order and easily accessible. The need to make everything perfect will inadvertently harm your productivity and goal for an organized lifestyle.
Take Breaks Strategically
I recommend you invest part of your time and energy relaxing. Often, we get caught up in the busyness of life with no time for ourselves. Strategic breaks are long enough to unplug and recharge and short enough to allow you to get back to work without having to deal with loads of unfinished tasks.
Organizing your life will give you a sense of fulfillment that will, in return, increase your wellbeing. After all, who wouldn’t want more time to spend with their loved ones and engage in activities that bring them joy?