Wanting to get organised and actually getting organised are two very different things.
You are one huge step there when you decide that you really want to get organised, and are ready to start – but then comes the planning and the working out what to do, when.
A lot of people find that its difficult to create a plan that they can work with, that suits their lifestyle, and that they have time to do.
“If your system isn’t working for you, there is something wrong with your system!”
Well, the simple truth is that you DO have to spend some time planning in the early phases to get organised.
Setting up systems, decluttering and simply getting on top of your current situation takes work – and time. BUT it is SO worth it!
Once most things are set up then it is simple maintenance and keeping on top of things which can easily fit into anyones schedule (and you will have created loads of extra time if you have started the organising process).
Truth is, you can make your plan fit any time you have available. You don’t have to get everything set up and systems working from day one. This would be a full time job for a while, and I don’t know many people who can give that sort of time in one block.
Therefore we need to work out a plan that prioritises what you want to get organised first, and schedules the actions into your diary so you are more likely to get them done.
So, you need a plan! (but don’t, like I have been known to…. spend so much time creating a plan that you don’t have time or energy to actually get the job done! )
And above all else, remember that the plan should be unique to you. Everyone is different and as with all organising, you can’t have one size fits all.
Therefore we will call this:-
Your Unique Organising Plan
You need to know YOU.
This sounds simple, but when was the last time you really looked at how you work, what makes you tick, and all the other little traits that add up to your personality.
Take a look at the statements below, think about each one, and write down your unique answers. This will really make you think about yourself and give you the momentum to get started and succeed. Write down these things and stick it somewhere where you can refer back – this is a very powerful tool in staying motivated – if you know why you are doing something you then have the reasons to continue. It will be worth it – I promise! (there are links to helpful articles along the way to get you thinking!)
- What are the reasons I want to get organised?
- What are the reasons that I give that are stopping me getting organised?
- How will I overcome these reasons?
- What is my personality type, and therefore how can I make organising work best for me?
- What do I want to achieve in the next week?
- What do I want to achieve in the next month?
- What do I want to achieve by this time next year?
- How am I going to get started, and what area will I look at first?
- Write down the steps you need to do to achieve these goals
– and rough time requirements (you may want to tackle a project a month and then break down each one into smaller easier to tackle tasks)
- When will I be able to schedule time to get this done?
- If I start to lose track, how will I keep myself motivated?
- How will I reward myself for a job well done?
Hopefully these questions and your unique answers have made you start to think about what life could be like once you start to get organised.
It will also help you to firm up the reasons for getting organised in the first place.
Answers such as “ I want to be 10 minutes early to meetings”, or “I want to have a meal plan set up” are perfect for this section.
Having time related goals helps to keep focused and motivated once you get started – you can always break your goal into smaller goals that you can add into time up to your ideal finish time so that you can ensure you get there.
It is almost impossible to put a time frame on “getting organised” as its an ongoing process that is always being refined and changed along with your changing needs – so I don’t advise setting time frames for the organising process as a whole, its too ambiguous.
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No one can be 100% organised
However, when you are completing a certain area of your home or life, you may find that setting time goals will be a very powerful way of completing parts of the organising process (such as decluttering a room, cleaning a room, or setting up a system to deal with your paperwork or finances).
Some organisers swear by setting a timer for say 15 minutes and seeing how far you get in that time. Its not enough time to be scary, but you may be amazed at exactly how much you can get done.
Having a plan will make you feel more in control of your life and home. When you know that its on your TO DO list, and that it will get done as you have prioritised it, you will feel less stressed and overwhelmed.
I wish you every success in whatever area you decide to organise first, and as always, let me know how you get on in the comments below…