Type A, yup that would be me: planner/multi-tasker extraordinaire. I thought I would share some helpful tips on how to organize your time. I know life can get busy, suddenly we abandon all rational thinking and our lives feel like the emotional equivalent of a hoarder’s living room (not, good, not good). So here’s to making the most of life, staying organized and getting it done!
Stay organized. I would say this is the most important aspect of maximizing your time. Chaos and disorganization can quickly steal time away from things we want to be doing and drains us of energy. Lists are a huge help and can keep us focused – hitting the grocery store? Make a list! Do you have a lot of errands to run or projects to complete? Jot down what is most important and start there, check off the rest as you go. Do the kids have a full day of play-dates and soccer games? Write out a schedule while you drink your morning coffee, or the night before.
Keep your calendar up to date. The minute you make a plan, date, or get-together, write it down in a planner or enter the event into your phone’s calendar. This will serve as a reminder for you and allow you to plan ahead. Do not ever overbook, more on that later.
Plan ahead. I know it is easy to get caught up in today and the now (carpè that diem!), however, looking ahead to the next week – or even two – will be extremely helpful. When you look at your calendar for the upcoming weeks, you may see an event that requires a gift or some other type of preparation. This advanced notice will allow you to grab a gift for the birthday party or wine for the game night in plenty of time – no more stressful last-minute trips to the store.
Don’t over-commit. Learn to say “no”, but nicely. I know it can be hard to decline a fun event or gathering, but sometimes you must. Committing to too many events can cause you to become frazzled or rushed. If you cannot attend, suggest another day/time that would work for you and express your sympathies for missing the fun.
Steer clear of time drains. You know exactly what I mean, don’t you? Scanning your Facebook feed, Friends re-runs, online shopping… the list goes on. We all have our own little idiosyncrasies and habits which can quickly drain our time away. I am not saying never check your feed or watch TV, however, you could set a time limit (30 mins, 1 hour) and then get on to something more productive.
It’s about integrity. Being late is rude, bottom line. Integrity is about being where you said you’d be. If you are chronically late, try and add a buffer to your travel time or get ready sooner. Show people that their time matters too! If there is an uncontrollable circumstance for being late, make sure to communicate (a call or text) and say you are sorry.
Book some “me time”. Always make time for yourself, filling up your own emotional/spiritual cup is a must. Dedicate time each week to do something especially for you – this can be writing time, a massage, your favorite movie (yeah, you get the idea). This might mean making a trade-off and saying “no” to something else. Don’t ever feel guilty, enjoy your personal time.
Thanks for reading and please share if you have any helpful tips for organizing your time.