Everyone needs to learn the skill set of organization at some point in their life. Of course, not everyone needs to exercise their own autonomy, but the truth is that those that do will do it better with good organization and timekeeping habits on their side.
But while some people are highly orderly and seem to stay organized from childhood, we can all focus on getting our needs in gear and improving in this most vital of skills.
So, how can you begin to do this? It’s hard to simply say ‘right, today I’ll be perfectly organized’ and follow on from there. It takes time to know how to manage yourself and your energies, because what may work for one person may not work for another.
Think about revision before an exam, and how two A-level students may go about this practice completely differently from one another. Does that mean they are worse or better learners? No, it just means they both know how to put themselves in the right gear and move forward.
How can you achieve this? Let’s explore that below:
Keep Notes & Keep Track
Keep notes and keep track of what you have to plan. This can help you refer to an external guide that can keep you together. Google Calendar, Evernote, or the Apple alternatives are great places to start.
Of course, some people prefer a calendar and notebook, which is absolutely valid and can even help you internalize your plans more, because writing it down by hand takes longer and forces you to digest it as appropriate. This could mean writing down the tips and tricks for a specialized hobby, or writing flashcards in revision.
Keeping notes and keeping track will also help you have an objective representation of how well you’re doing. Did you keep your deadlines? If not, why? Did you just not try as hard as you could? Never discount this, because when organizing, sometimes being too easy with yourself is the mind-killer.
However, it’s also true that you could be too hard on yourself, and you’re asking yourself to do too many things at once.
If you keep notes and keep track, you can adjust them as appropriate as the weeks go on. You’ll know your limits and your strengths. This helps you grow. Notes shouldn’t feel like iron chains, but rather a helpful friend you can use to direct your action. That’s a great place to start.
Keep Your Promises To Yourself
It’s very important to keep promises to yourself. This can seem like the easiest thing in the world, but it’s not. There will be days that you don’t want to spend that extra ten minutes putting together your schedule for the following day. Sometimes, you’ll be able to justify a break instead of working.
Of course, we’re not here to tell you that you should work like a bull-headed automaton only ever working towards something and leaving nothing for yourself. That being said, once you break a promise to yourself, it’s VERY easy to break the next one. And the next one after that.
Then, not being able to trust your own promises makes the future into a murky and unpredictable place, something you’re not sure if you’ll be able to trust yourself to contend with.
So, some discipline is required. You can have the best-organized notebook in the world, but if you fail to enact those plans, your organization can come to naught. This will discourage you from making those plans again. So, organization is an effective tool, but to breathe life into that tool you need to follow this up.
Of course, this can sound like quite a cautionary tale, but the opposite is also true. If you keep a promise to yourself, and again, and again, you will begin to trust yourself. Then, when you actually cannot contend with a plan you have made for whatever reason, you’re more likely to forgive yourself and stop that from becoming a habit. So – in order to organize, we must first add the slow development of discipline.
What Do You Hope To Organize?
Of course, it’s also essential to understand just what you hope to organize in the first place. Organizing a film crew is much different from organizing a dinner event, for example. From how you manage people to how you delegate authority, organization can be a team effort or solo enterprise.
For our example, we will assume you are organizing yourself for an achievement in your personal life. Let’s say you’re hoping to pass your driving test before Christmas. This is good because it gives you both a framework AND a deadline to complete it by.
So – how many lessons do you predict you will need? Of course, this is hard to set, so perhaps you’ll consider the average you can find online, or ask your driving instructor on average how long it will take. Then you can plan your savings around that. Perhaps you can save money to have two driving lessons a week. Does that put you in good stead for passing your practical test? Definitely.
Ah, but there’s the theory exam to pass, too. So, how many hours are you willing to dedicate to revision a week? Where is your theory testing centre? When is the soonest you could take it? If you manage to curate this knowledge, you can more easily understand what it means to learn to set a framework of weekly effort that is sustainable and leads to a future goal.
All of your important elements are in place, and just need a slot in your schedule. Then you can break it down further. Perhaps you should buy a theory test practice book from Amazon in the next few days. Organizing in this manner can help you stay focused, and incremental progress will make it much more likely for you to continue. That’s a great state of affairs.
With this advice, we hope you can more easily become better at organizing your life in relation to the goals you hope to achieve. We believe in you!