Technology and the digital era are obsessed with efficiency and saving time. But despite all the advances in our lifestyle and technology that allow us to save time, it feels like Canadians living modern, 21st century, first-world lifestyles are finding more and more things to do, and less time to do them.
While we keep adding to our list of necessary daily, weekly and monthly activities, we still only have 24 hours in a day to do these things, and, if we’re lucky eight of those hours are lost to sleep. So, keeping things under control and trying to stay organized can sometimes feel like a harrowing, stressful activity, but there are ways to stay cool and keep organized even with the busiest schedule.
The first, crucial step to being organized is to not be overly ambitious about your level of organization. Strive for something that is smaller, and actually feasible with your current lifestyle. Do not suddenly get an app that meticulously organizes your time down to the minute, in a reordering of your lifestyle so dramatic that it leaves it unrecognizable. Trying to make this kind of huge switch from one day to next is likely to result in failure, and leave you reluctant to genuinely change. Try smaller things first and work up to bigger changes.
Reward Yourself For Succeeding
This is important for retaining any long-term behavioural change. The carrot always works better than the stick, so if you’re trying to eliminate certain anti-organizational behaviours such as procrastinating or being a couch potato, reward yourself when you manage to do so. The trick to becoming more organized is to stick to it, and rewarding positive behavioural change reinforces this.
Not everything needs to be done now, and not everything needs to be done today. The key to good organizing is recognizing which tasks should be given priority at any given time. Organizing is not just about making sure there’s a list of tasks present; it’s about knowing when is the right time to perform these tasks.
Keep Spares & Back Ups
Nothing breaks an organizational streak like a breakdown. If you’re attending a conference and you have only one pen that runs out of ink, or you lose it, or you’ve only got one file stored in one hard disk and that storage fails can be a tremendous spanner in your works. Having spares or emergency replacements for certain things can ensure you don’t get thrown off track when things go wrong.
Delegate What You Can
It’s a tougher prospect, especially for people with issues of control, but delegation works wonders for just how much you can do. If you can get other people you trust, with results you’re satisfied with to take on some tasks, this can make a world of difference to just how much you can accomplish in a day.
Whether it’s coworkers at your place of employment or household tasks assigned to your children or partner, more people doing more things equals more accomplished. And that can often mean the difference between a day’s goals completed and a nagging sense of things unfinished.