Being an organised person is something that many people would like to be; for some, it’s because they genuinely enjoy being organised (virtual hug to my planners out there), and for others, because they know that without being organised, life is a mess.
Especially when there’s a lot going on in your life, this should be one of your priorities, otherwise, the consequences will be that you’ll feel really overwhelmed, drop the ball somewhere, and you won’t feel satisfied with yourself.
This blog post is dedicated to helping you be organised at work and at home so that you can enjoy some peace of mind.
Why can’t I stay organised?
Let me start by saying that if you can’t stay organised, there’s nothing wrong with you. The truth is, people who are good at it are usually born with this skill as one of their strengths, and even for them, things can be difficult sometimes.
So don’t beat yourself up, but perhaps ask yourself:
- Have you been disciplined in trying to be more organised?
- Have you been intentional in pursuing an improvement in this area of your life?
If despite your efforts, you still can’t manage to organise yourself at work or in life, it might be because you still haven’t found a method that works for you, so don’t worry, that’s what I’m here for!
How do you start organising yourself?
I will say that the first (and arguably most important) tip to become organised, is to use a planner. It doesn’t have to be the fanciest thing you’ve ever seen, and it’s totally up to you whether you prefer a digital or physical planner.
I personally prefer a paper planner because I’m a bit old school but I’m willing to give digital planners a try.
The point is, whatever you choose, you’ll need a place to put everything together so that you can start evaluating what your life looks like, organise yourself and prioritise.
If you’re interested in discovering a new planner, I’ve written a review of the best planner I’ve ever used so far in this blog post.
Now let’s see what this practically looks like for both work and your personal life.
5 tips to be organised at work
Have a clear desk
Whether you work from home or work in an office, the situation is the same. If you have a cluttered desk, it will be really hard to be organised and productive. You want to make sure you only keep your essentials on it, which will vary based on your role and your needs, but this is definitely the first tip I recommend you apply when it comes to being organised at work.
Write an effective to do list
This is another big one because I know very well what it feels like when tasks keep coming through and you just jot everything down in the hopes of getting it done. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t happen!
If you really want to be more organised in the workplace, you need to write an effective to do list to start seeing results and avoid overwhelming yourself.
Set your priorities right
Another important thing you should do is to prioritise correctly. This ties into the point above, because based on the list you’ll write, you’ll need to learn to prioritise that list to truly be organised at work.
I’ve written a blog post to teach you how to prioritise well, so check it out!
I’m sorry, but if you’re not taking breaks regularly during your work day, you’re killing your productivity and will start feeling all over the place.
Make sure that you schedule breaks during your day so that you can think and work with a clear mind and will be able to get your job done efficiently.
Another thing you should be doing to stay organised at work is to set boundaries with others. What does this have to do with organisation?
Well firstly, not having boundaries with your manager or your colleagues can result in some serious burnout, and secondly, if you don’t have boundaries, people will keep adding things to your workload, forcing you to rethink your to do list and rearrange things based on their priorities instead of yours.
Of course, there will be moments where things will need to be readjusted on your list, but saying no sometimes will be more beneficial to you than saying yes to everything.
Keep your inbox tidy
For the love of all things productivity, please, keep your inbox clean.
I’ve never seen as many emails come through since I got a job in corporate, and even though I think most of them are unnecessary, it’s still important to open them and assign them to the right place.
I try to keep my inbox to 0 as much as possible, and I never end my day having emails I haven’t read.
This will help you so much to stay organised at work because when emails keep flooding in, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and then you’re drowning in your unread emails.
If you want to take it up a notch, consider creating subfolders in your inbox to categorise the incoming emails based on what they’re about. This will help you to stay even more organised and reduce the overwhelm.
Tools to stay organised at work
A quick win for you to stay organised at work is to use some tools that will help you to improve your productivity, eliminate distractions, write effective lists and take notes that you can access at any time.
Check out my blog post where I list 20 incredible productivity tools (which are free!) that will help you achieve your goal!
5 tips to be organised at home
If you’re an adult and you’re responsible for yourself, chances are that you don’t only need to stay organised at work, but you need to be organised at home too, and that’s why I’ve selected these 5 tips that will help you have some quick wins and kill the overwhelm.
One of my favourite tips to stay organised at home is to meal plan+prep. This will help you save so much time and energy, especially if your days are busy and the last thing you want to do is to cook from scratch every single day.
Even though I work from home 95% of the time, I still try to do my food shop in bulk and meal prep because I still have to work on my blog and fulfil other responsibilities that take my time, so meal planning helps to keep my sanity.
Have systems for your chores
Doing things whenever you remember to do them isn’t a great tip, unfortunately. It’s important that you create systems for your chores, because unless you can afford to pay for a cleaner, things will pile up pretty quickly.
My recommendation is that you list all the tasks you need to do around the house (i.e. cleaning, laundry, loading/offloading the dishwasher, etc.) and create a system for when you’ll get everything done.
I like to also integrate these tasks, so for example, I usually put the laundry on and then do my food shop or start meal prepping. Or I’ll put something in the oven and will start cleaning my bathroom.
This way, I’m saving time instead of doing one thing at a time and I manage to stay organised at home and avoid getting overwhelmed.
For all the haters of routines, let me tell you, they are life savers. When life is busy and there’s so much to do, starting and ending the day well will have a huge impact on your wellbeing, and it will help you stay organised at home and in all areas of your life.
Now, I can’t fully do this unfortunately since I live in a house-share, but I do have systems in place anyway and I’ve organised my mum’s home like this.
Using containers will be a game changer as it will help to keep your home organised and neat and every single item in your house will have a place to be in.
You can use containers for your clothes, your fridge, any item in your kitchen, your stationery, electronics, literally everything!
Using a container system will help you to have peace of mind and avoid wasting time trying to find what you need.
End the day with everything clean
I know this can be a bit of a painful one, but it will be worth putting into practice. Rather than letting things pile up in your home because you’re tired and keep putting it off, try ending the day with everything being neat and tidy.
For example, I never leave any dishes in the sink for the next day, and I hate having a messy kitchen. The way for me to stay organised at home is to ensure that the kitchen is clean after cooking, the dishes are washed or in the dishwasher, and there’s nothing out of place.
Same thing with my clothes; it’s easy to put them on the side of the bed and then they magically start piling up as the days go by. But it’s a lot more helpful to just put away the clothes worn on the day, and start the next day afresh.
Final thoughts on how to be organised at work and at home
I hope these tips will be as helpful to you as they were to me when I first started implementing them in my life.
Don’t overwhelm yourself trying to do everything at once, but start by integrating one change at a time.
Trust me, you’ll thank yourself for making the effort and you’ll finally feel like you’re organised at work and at home and your life will be a lot more peaceful!