Keeping a schedule is imperative if I want to have any type of success in my life. The only downside to keeping a schedule is that you can’t plan for curveballs. You know what curveballs I’m talking about. Random, unplanned meetings that pop up, personal emergencies or simply having a bad day. There are tons of advice columns telling people how to stay organized and some of them I find really beneficial but I’m a firm believer that organization doesn’t have a one size fits all type of solution.
Today’s post isn’t necessarily a preachy post telling you how to get organized. Today’s post is simply a factual account of the tips and tricks I use to *try* to stay organized. Now, as a newly crowned freelancer, I’ve found myself really having to take control of my time and my schedule in a way that I’ve never had to before.
In getting (and staying) organized, I’ve become much more aware of my time and how precious it is. Time is the one thing in our lives we can’t get back or ask for a refund. So, I’ve become so much more protective of it. I’ve embraced saying no when I need to and I’m much more mindful of not overexplaining myself when I do say no.
How I stay organized
Put the phone down. OK, I’ll admit this is hard. It really is. I’ve become one of those people who keeps a phone in my hand all the time but I don’t ever want to normalize it. Part of me putting my phone down consisted of me halting my email alerts. This doesn’t mean that I can’t check my email on my phone, it just means that I’m not always interrupted by it. I check my email (on my laptop), three times a day. It keeps me on track and less distracted.
Write it down. Not everyone agrees with this and guess what: it’s OK. I’m old school in the sense that I LOVE to write down what my day looks like. I enjoy writing my to do lists and my grocery lists. Seeing it on paper keeps me on task (usually) and it helps me to monitor if I’m succeeding with my task list or not.
Pick 3 goals for the day or week. Again, something that may not be helpful for everyone but this is something that keeps me on track with staying organized. I look at my week and all of the things I’d like to get done. From that list, I pick my top 3 tasks that MUST get done. This helps me stay organized because it prioritizes my tasks.
Take a break. Listen, we’re all busy and even though what works for me may not always work for you, one thing we can agree on is the need to take a break. Mental breaks are very helpful to my success and keeping me organized. I do a little work and take a mental break. Whether it’s taking a moment to stretch or going to grab a snack, giving myself a much-needed mental break helps me refocus and not burnout.
How do you stay organized?