Life can be crazy nowadays and it can be so easy to feel scattered and unorganized. Learning how to organize your life can help eliminate that overwhelmed feeling and enable you to be more productive.
Once you get your life organized, you’ll be surprised at how much more time you actually have.
You can stop saying you don’t have time to go to the gym, meal plan, or just do some self care. You’ll have time for all of that once you get organized!
And if you’re not naturally an organized person, it’s ok. I can show you. It’s not hard to get some semblance of order in your life.
In order to become the person you want to be, it’s so important that you take some of these easy steps to organize your life!
Easy Ways to Get Organized
From health to finances to everyday life, these tips can help even the most disorganized person get a handle on their life.
Set Your Goals
Before you get started on any journey to improve yourself, you have got to set goals.
Without a goal(s), it’s hard to stay motivated to get more organized…there should always be something you are working towards, even if it’s as simple as learning how to be on time (very important in my opinion!!).
Use Your Calendar
Ok…so most of us carry a smartphone around with us at all times. When you have an appointment or need to remember something, use your calendar! Set reminders on it.
The boyfriend is forgetting to do things constantly and I am always reminding him to put things on his calendar! I probably have more on my calendar than I need, but I rarely, if ever forget or double book things.
Use a Project Tracking App
It allows you to set priorities and due dates for certain tasks that need to be done by you or your team members.
Make Shopping Lists
How many times have you been at the grocery store, bought a basket full of groceries, got home and realized you forget to buy half the things you needed.
Then you have to go back which takes more time (and usually more money as well).
Taking an extra 5 minutes to make a shopping list will both help you save an enormous amount of time as well as help you save money on groceries (goodbye all the stuff you didn’t need to buy while there).
I personally use the notes section on my phone to make lists, but you can use whatever works for you. My mom still brings a piece of paper with her list on it.
Go to Sleep at the Same Time Every Day
I get it, it’s Friday night and you’re ready to stay up late and blow off some steam after the week you had!
But then you stay up late, sleep late, and you’re whole day is thrown off as you don’t have any real plan the next day because you slept late.
Going to sleep at the same time every day helps you keep to a schedule, which in turn will help you stay organized.
And getting enough sleep is incredibly important to your well being!
Wake Up at the Same Time Every Day
Same here. I know that waking up a 6 AM on the weekend seems ridiculous, but it’s not. Your body will thank you for not throwing it out of whack, and you will get so much more done.
Because unfortunately until you are financially free, most people have to take care of personal errands and chores on the weekend after working 50 hours during the prior week.
When you keep a regular schedule, it’s easier to get the things done you need to so you can take some time to relax and have fun on the weekend!
Make To-Do Lists
If you’re ultra organized and motivated, you will turn your short term, or yearly, goals into monthly goals, then weekly goals.
From those weekly goals comes your daily to-do list. What do you need to take care of that day to help meet your weekly, monthly and/or yearly goals?
A planner can help you with this if you want to get fancy. I personally use simple top spiral notebooks for all my lists and planning.
You can also use your computer or smartphone, but ONLY if you will access it regularly and use it. A written list an be conspicuously placed somewhere that you will see it, while a list on your phone has to be accessed by you.
And always plan your day the night before if you can. Write out your to-do list, pick out your clothes, and check your calendar for any meeting/tasks that need to be taken care of.
The when you wake up early the next morning, you can get started!
Start Time Blocking
Time blocks are where you set aside a certain amount of time to work on a project. For instance, you can set 30 minutes aside each day at a certain time to go through emails.
I love working with time blocks. It keeps you focused on whatever the task is at hand – whether it be cleaning, reading, working on a project, etc.
Turn off all other distractions during your time block and just get to it. You’ll be amazed at how much more you get done.
For more on time blocking, check out Deep Work by Cal Newport. It is an amazing book on productivity!
Use Folders, Binders, Etc.
You know those people who keep piles of paper on their desk? Sometimes when you ask them for something, they can pull it out somewhat quickly, but usually it consists of digging through stuff before they find what you need.
That’s not the best way to do things. I used to be that person and it just doesn’t work, no matter how “organized” you think your piles are.
Think about that stack of mail on the counter. How do you keep that organized?
Folders guys…folders. Or even three ring binders for larger projects. Use folders with labels and/or tabs so you can keep track of certain things.
For instance, you can keep a folder for all your tax bills/statements or all your mortgage paperwork.
Also, if you’re working on a project you can use a binder and create different tabs within that binder for different sections of the project. It makes staying organized so much easier!
You may want to use something like this folder organizer to keep all your folder organized too.
Clean Up Your Email
When I get up in the morning, one of the first things I do after getting some coffee is to check my email. Sometimes this even helps me tweak my plan for the day.
**remember, we already created out plan the night before, but now we can make small tweaks if something important has come up.
And it doesn’t help if when you open it up there are a million emails from World Market, Hello Fresh, or whatever else you may be subscribed to.
I highly recommend unsubscribing to almost everything unless it’s something you really do use every day. And I’m not talking about just looking at things you like (that’s how your budget gets out of control too!).
I am literally unsubscribed from EVERY advertising email out there. I work to only receive emails related to business or something I need to take care of.
This greatly reduces the amount of time I spend in my email inbox. And on that same note, stop checking your email every 10 minutes throughout the day!
Set a few times a day (if that) to go in and check your email if you can. This really helps you keep organized.
Once you have read something, if you need to keep it, put it in a folder (see below about creating folders), or delete it to keep your inbox clutter free.
Using Email Folders
You can also set up folder in your email inbox to help you stay organized once you’ve cleaned up all the crap. For instance, I have a folder called “receipts” for all the receipts I need to keep.
Clean Up Your Social Media
You know the hours you spend every day scrolling though social media (yes, it’s hours even if you don’t think it is)?
Stop doing that. Unfollow people/things you don’t care about. That way, when you log in you’ll only be seeing what you like instead of trying to sort through all the crap (and buying things you don’t need).
I also highly recommend setting a time block with a timer so you don’t waste hours on social media.
You also should consider doing a total social media detox. It will feel SO GOOD!!
Set up Your Computer
The world is digital now. Much like the hard copy folders you may have set up (see above), you’ll also want to get control over your computer.
Set up folders guys. Folders for everything. Instead of saving something on your desktop and then spending forever searching for it later (I know you’ve done that too), set up folders for specific things.
For instance, I have folders for home mortgages, budgeting (this is where I keep my financial budget – yes you need one), professional licenses, etc. Anything that applies to you, make a folder.
Declutter Your House
Living in a cluttered house makes it extremely difficult to feel organized. You don’t have to be crazy like me (I get physically anxious when my house is cluttered), but de-cluttering is a great way to get organized.
Some of the tips above will help – such as using folders.
But this also applies to a sink full of dishes, an unmade bed, and clothes laying on the floor. All these things scream disorganized to me!
I understand these things will happen from time to time, but it should be rare. Make your bed when you get up.
Wash your dishes when you’re done eating. Clean up your clothes when you get back from the gym.
Taking the extra few moments to do these things will make cleaning house (even if you speed clean) much less stressful and take so much less time.
Consider getting some cute ways to keep little items and papers that you haven’t decided what to do with yet (really try to file it away asap!!) organized:
Don’t Buy What You Don’t Need
If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. It’s pretty simple. Now I know sometimes you’re going to treat yourself, and that’s fine, but keep this as a general rule.
If you have less stuff, there is less to organize and take care of. Period.
Clean Out Your Closet
Yes, you have to do this. I know it’s hard, but it must be done. Go through all your clothes, shoes, bags, etc. Get rid of what you don’t need.
You can even make money with your used stuff with apps like Thredup. That should motivate you even more!
Create a Meal Plan
Meal planning is one of the best ways to stay organized and save yourself a whole buttload of time during the week.
By taking a few extra minutes each week to write up a meal plan (learn how to meal plan), you can save yourself so much time and energy trying to figure out what’s for dinner each night. Or breakfast or lunch.
And it makes your grocery list (see above) that much easier to make. I actually even created a meal planning e-book to help you get started.
Create a Budget
Honestly, I should have put this as the first item on the list to make sure you read it. It’s that important. One of these books about budgeting might help you get started, as well as the many articles on this site about budgeting.
You MUST have a budget to keep your finances organized. And organizing your finances can relieve so much stress in your life.
A budget helps you keep track of your income and expenses so you can make sure you’re not living beyond your means and are putting money away for savings.
Having enough money to not feel trapped or tied down to a specific job or career is the goal.
But regardless if that’s your goal or not, you need to have a budget to keep your finances organized.
Create an Exercise Plan
Have you ever arrived at the gym and just didn’t have an idea of what you were going to do there? Yeah, me too.
Then I end up wandering and doing random things – which is better than nothing, but not all that effective.
Create a weekly plan for workouts. Whether it’s attending workout classes, following along with an at-home yoga video, or creating a weight lifting/cardio plan for each day at the gym, know what you’re going to do.
Plus, you’re much more likely to do your exercise, and do it in less time, if it’s already planned out.
If something needs to be done, do it now. Whenever you find yourself saying “I’ll just do that tomorrow,” stop and just do it.
One, because it feels good to just have it done. And two, you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Maybe you won’t be able to do it and you’ll be even more stressed out.
Just do it.
Keep a Fun Journal
I know the topic of organization seems so boring, but it doesn’t have to be all work. You need to go out and have fun.
But sometimes, when we have free time we get trapped into binging Netflix or something that doesn’t always give us a ton of joy.
Instead, start a journal or list of fun things you want to do. You can include all different types of things, and even create multiple lists of you want:
- A list of restaurants to try
- Places you want to travel to – weekend getaways, day trips, or longer vacations
- Hobbies you want to start or continue
- A list of books you want to read (try one of these personal development books)
- A list of movies you want to go see
To Sum it all Up
Learning how to organize your life is going to help you be more efficient, feel less stressed and free up so much time you didn’t even know you had!
Have you tried any of these techniques to organize your life? Comment below and let me know what you’re doing or what your struggles are!