I have been praised for my ability to organize for as long as I can remember. I would like to think I was embedded by the Creator Himself with an extra dose of organizational skills because even my own family questions the origin of this exceptional trait of mine. While to an outsider it may appear as though I glide through my four-page to-do lists with such grace, I too experience the stress of wanting to pull out my hair because of the amount that I have on my plate. I had to forget a couple of assignments and miss a few meetings before I realized the importance of prioritizing and organizing. The importance of organization is not to be underestimated. It can mean the difference between passing or failing a class; an acceptance or denial letter from your graduate school of choice; or even the difference between getting your dream career or working minimum wage for the rest of your life. However you choose to get organized is solely your decision. My key to organization consists of making daily, weekly, and monthly to-do lists, having a planner, AND setting phone reminders. While my method may seem a bit extreme, what works for me may not necessarily work for you. I have, however, compiled a list of general tips that can jumpstart you on your way to mastering organization.
1. Have Goals/ Keep Your Eyes on the Prize: setting goals is the first step to becoming organized. How can you be organized if you do not even know what it is that you desire? Setting [attainable] goals allows you to be focused. By knowing what you want, you will know how you need to organize your life to reach your goals.
2. Use Your Time Wisely: Proper time-management should be more of a stress reliever than a burden. By prioritizing, you are able to get the more important tasks done first and ultimately have more time for leisure. You may have to learn to say “No” every now and then, but the payoff will be great. Although this takes discipline, it is better to learn this now than later.
3. Have a Planner/Agenda: A planner is an easy way to visualize everything on your to-do list. While many of us may think our brains are super duper efficient, it is always possible that we can forget something. Why not write everything down? Besides, writing out your list of to-dos can often show you the amount of free time you had know idea that you had.
4. Take care of YOU: Lastly, by taking care of yourself, you are able to dedicate more time to more things. DO NOT overburden yourself with everything that you have to do. Take a breather every now and then, go to the gym, or have quiet time. Never get so caught up in life that you forget to take care of yourself.
Summer is a great time to get organized. I challenge you to find what method of organization works best for you and commit to it. You will notice your life changing for the better when you can eliminate the stress that a lack of organization brings. Good Luck!
“Tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today”
― African Proverb