Organize Your (Work) Life
How to Get Organized and Stay Organized
The more responsibility you’re given at work (and the more you age), the more important it is to be organized. If you’re an organized person, you can find the information you need faster, and you’re more likely to recall that information without having to go look for it. Plus, if something doesn’t automatically get embedded in your brain, you have something tangible to fall back on. The simple act of not forgetting things makes you more reliable and trustworthy, so let’s get organized!
Here are 6 tips for getting and staying organized:
1. Write Stuff Down
This is a simple one. Get your ideas out of your head and out into the world. Whether they’re typed out, written in a notebook, or scribbled on a sticky note – it doesn’t matter as long as they’re out there and in a system. If you leave everything inside your brain, you’re headed for chaos.
2. Make Lists
Take all that great stuff you wrote down and make lists with it. Daily task lists, monthly to-do lists, a year-long list of goals – put it all on some sort of list. Most importantly, once you build your list, pay attention to it. Make sure you’re checking it regularly and checking things off.
3. Add Tasks to Calendar
Once you have your to-do lists built out, figure out how long each task takes and add them to your calendar or Daytimer. If you assign a specific time to a to-do, you’re much more likely to start and finish that task.
4. Make Folders
For any paperwork you need to keep (physical or digital), you’re going to want to have folders to keep it in. So create folders on your computer, in your mail service, and in your office. Then, file that shit away.
5. Use Consistent Naming for Files
Everyone organizes a little differently, so it doesn’t need to be perfect, it just needs to be something you’ll use. Whatever system you use for naming your folders, make sure it’s something you can remember. For any inter-office organization, make sure there’s a standard company-wide naming convention, and that your whole team is following it.
6. Make Time
Once you’ve created a system that works for you, be consistent with it. Designate a certain time during the day that’s devoted to organizing. I.E., Take five minutes at the end of each day, or a half-hour at the end of the week to organize, so you can return to your office with a clean slate.