Everyone has different ways of becoming more organized at work and keeping tabs on their tasks. Whether digital or on paper, various mediums can be used to maintain clean and decluttered workspaces. Setting divisions and boundaries between your personal and work life can also be a helpful way to keep your mind from getting scattered along the way. Some people, however, may not have this all figured out yet. Maybe you haven’t quite discovered what organizational methods work for you, and that’s totally okay. That being said, here are some suggestions and tips for becoming a more organized individual.
1. Say no to procrastination.
To start everything off, here’s the most important reminder we constantly have to tell ourselves: resist procrastination. Oftentimes, it may be tempting to put something off for a few minutes so you can scroll through Instagram. Next thing you know, you’ve wasted an hour.
To avoid this, keep in mind how much time you’ll save by actually getting things done on schedule. A shift in mindset could do a lot for you and your productivity. The satisfaction of meeting a deadline (or even better, submitting early) can be a big morale booster and can subsequently motivate you to get more tasks done in a short amount of time. Good time management is a good start to maintaining healthy work habits.
2. Write daily to-do lists.
It doesn’t matter if your to-do list is on a sticky note or a journal. The entire essence of having this kind of list is so that you can have the satisfaction of checking off each task as you go along your day. Ideally, you wrap your day up with everything checked off, so you can go to sleep fulfilled that you were able to achieve the agenda you planned out.
It is suggested to place your lists on sticky notes and attach them to your wall or stick them inside your planner. Besides this, there are some digital apps as well that have a checklist function, such as Reminders apps or Stickies on desktop. It really doesn’t matter what you use, as long as the essence of the checklist is there! After the day is over, you can scrap that list and start an entirely new one.
3. Keep a yearly planner.
For some, physically writing on a journal planner can be a therapeutic source of productivity. You might be wondering, what’s the difference between having daily checklists and a planner? Aren’t they both just ways to list down your tasks? The difference is that a yearly planner allows you to project your agendas in the long run, hence letting you plan things more flexibly. There’s a certain satisfaction that comes with writing future events ahead of time and jotting these down in a planner really helps you secure them in your memory.
If you’re creative and have enough energy, you could also try keeping a bullet journal and formatting it like a planner. Essentially, deciding to start on a bullet journal gives you a lot of freedom with how you want your format and systems to be laid out. It takes a lot of effort to draw out the spreads yourself, but as long as you customize the spreads to your liking, it would definitely work and benefit your personal organizational system.
For those who are more keen on being paperless, apps like Goodnotes allow you to create your own digital planners on your laptops or tablets. Don’t stress about formatting it yourself, because there are optional templates provided as well so you can get started right away.
4. Download organizational apps.
If you’re not a fan of having a chunky journal planner around, digital organizational apps could be your best friend! This is a good paperless alternative for people who might not want to pick up a pen and write. Note that these are not necessarily digital planners, but virtual workspaces that you can personalize to your own liking.
Apps like Notion and OneNote have browser, desktop app, and mobile app access, so all your data will be synced accordingly. Having these on hand helps especially with people who are constantly on the go for different kinds of tasks and jobs.
5. Declutter when you can.
When you’re at a specific workspace location frequently, it may have the tendency to continually get messy and cluttered. This goes as well for virtual workspaces and cloud storage apps like Google Drive. When tasks start building up onto each other, your space may start to turn into a dumpsite of notes and tasks. To prevent the buildup, allot some time every week to clean up and put things back in their proper places.
For example, taking a day per week to dust off your desk and return misplaced items can be a simple way to organize. For digital spaces, create folders to categorize each of your files and have an external hard drive where you can backup heavy ones. This will prevent your device from running out of space out of nowhere.
If you haven’t figured out how to customize your organizational system, keep these tips in mind. Pick something to start with and see where you go from there. Everyone figures it out eventually!