Top 8 Tips to Organise Your Work and Life
Ask any of my family members or close friends, and they will all tell you the same thing: I am an organisation freak. I am a constant list-maker, schedule-planner and time-keeper and pretty much everything else organisation-y you can think of. Over the years I’ve bought and/or printed off countless list templates, daily timetables and weekly planners, as well as using my handy Filofax on a daily basis. As a result, I’m never late, I (almost!) never forget anything, and people always complement me on how fast I get things done! However, I don’t do all this to impress people, I actually need to plan my life so thoroughly because I am super forgetful! But ssshh that’s between you and me.
Because of my busy schedule when I was at university juggling coursework, friends and dancing, and my hectic schedule now with freelance work and blogging, I am constantly learning how to organise my time better. So I thought I’d put my compulsive organisation to good use, and share a few tips I’ve learned over the years!
8 Organisation Tips from an Organisation Nut!
1. I would recommend having ONE centralised To-Do list. Whether it’s a paper list or a digital one is entirely up to you, but having multiple scattered lists will guarantee you forget at least one item. This is why you need to carry your list around with you in your purse, either on your phone or in a notebook. Whenever something new crops up, add it to your list as soon as possible!
2. With that said, I also recommend separating your list into Short-Term Items, like “Ring the bank” and Long-Term Goals like “Plan my summer holiday”. I also write down due dates for all my items. You will then progressively break down your Long Term Goals into smaller Short Term Items until they’re completely done!
3. Every Monday morning when I sit down to begin my day, I print out a Weekly Planner and, well, plan my work week (including the weekend). As I do this, I have my To-Do List nearby and I try to incorporate as many items as I can, alongside my regular weekly activities and objectives. Be realistic though! You can also use colored sticky notes to do this, in case some goals and events are likely to be moved around.
4. Alternatively, if you’re not as forgetful as me and can actually remember your regular weekly activities without writing them down, simply take the time to highlight ONE item on your To-Do List which you will get down before going to bed that day.
5. Because I don’t carry my Weekly Planner around with me (it stays on my desk), I also have my Filofax in my bag. I use it to note down any appointments or social events I book and organise as I’m out and about. I always have my handy Bic four-color pen with me as I color code depending on work/social/sports items.
6. Syncing is key! I use Evernote on my phone (mentioned in my Top 10 Apps post!) almost every day to jot down blog post ideas, recipe ideas or anything else that pops into my mind when I’m away from my notebook. I make sure it syncs to my computer so I can look at these ideas later on when I’m on my Macbook. Also make sure to sync your Calendars across your phone, computer and iPad if you use them (I personally use my Filofax). That way, you spend less time copying and more time doing! Last year at uni, the fiancé and I had such busy schedules that we decided to sync our iCalendars – such a good idea to keep track of each other’s schedules!
7. Keep your workspace clutter-free. A nice neat desk will help keep your mind from feeling cluttered and hectic! I try to only have my Macbook, my To-Do list, my Weekly Planner and my pens on my desk when I’m working. If I print anything out / receive any mail, I immediately file it away. If necessary, take five minutes every morning to clear away your desk.
8. Splurge on pretty stationery and pens! It’ll make the task of writing lists and schedules so much more appealing! I adore my Paperchase list book, and I always use my Swarovski Crystals pen when I’m writing boring things – makes them so much more interesting! :)
Do you have any organisational tips?