5 Tips for a More-Organized You in 2019
Welcome to 2019! As we begin a new year, we are all looking for ways to be more organized. Below are five tips to start 2019 off more organized and more productive.
Tip 1: Establish a routine. The foundation for an effective organization is a routine, which allows us to foster good, consistent behaviors and ultimately eliminate unhelpful habits. Establishing a routine can be difficult, especially if you work a third-shift job and your weekend sleep patterns are very different than your weekdays. Still, there are probably certain things you like to do consistently every day. Maybe you like to exercise before work, or have a cup of coffee first thing in the morning; maybe you like to carve out time for TV. By identifying your daily habits, you can begin to practice routinizing your schedule by performing these tasks around the same time every day. Even if you work third-shift, consistency is key. Establishing activities can help your body get into a rhythm so that no matter what, you can get into your groove and have a reliable, outlined approach to every day.
Tip 2: Organize your workspace. Are papers, pens, and miscellaneous paraphernalia scattered all over your desk or workstation? Though it can be hard to imitate those perfect Pinterest workspaces with natural light and perfectly labeled folders, clutter of any kind can be extremely distracting to productivity. Start by arranging your space in a way that feels manageable to you. One way to start organizing your workspace is by going through your work and figuring out what you need to prioritize immediately vs. your ongoing projects and tasks; assess your surroundings and determine what any distractions might be — whether you work at a desk or on a line — and identify the tools you need to stay focused and efficient. Keep your organization simple If you feel like everything has to be in a “perfect” place, you might get overwhelmed, but if you start small, you will create a catalyst for a more organized space that promotes more productivity.
Tip 3: Prep your meals beforehand. Not only can meal prepping help keep you on task for your other New Year’s Resolution of a healthier you, it can also help optimize your time because it takes the stress of guesswork out of what you will eat each day. In addition to more time and money, meal prepping means less waste. Not to mention, preparing meals ahead of time can not only save us money, it often provides us with a sense of control in our time management; we can establish a specific window of time during a week to prepare food and then not have to think outside of that space.
Tip 4: Optimize your carry-on. Identify what things you need to take with you each day. Your lunch? Your safety equipment? Your gym bag for after/before work? Consider optimizing how you transport your things; what sort of bags or boxes do they require? Can you condense or reorganize? Is there a way to lessen your load? Similar to meal prepping, the less time you have to think about where your items are in a given day, the more time you can give to specific daily tasks.
Tip 5: Check the weather. Because the weather can change on a dime, ranging from white-out blizzards to balmy 50-degree days that hint at spring, it is important to check the forecast the night before. Most smartphones are equipped with an easily accessible weather app that you can check the night before. By determining a sense of the weather in advance, you can set aside extra time or items so that you are appropriately organized. That is, should you plan to start your car ahead of time to defrost? Will you need time to brush off the snow? Will the day require an umbrella or an ice scraper after your shift? By identifying these outliers ahead of time, you are more likely to stay the course of your routine.