Ask anyone I know and they’ll tell you I’m a pretty organised person, I have a diary, I take my readily prepared lunch to work with me and I know where I need to be…but what happens when I let this slip? Despite appearances, half of the time i do not have my shit together, I have been known to finish an assignment half an hour before the deadline only to have to run to uni to hand it in, or miss a whole week of blog posts as I had failed to manage my time and schedule far enough in advance. What I’m trying to say is, it’s difficult to be super organised all the time, we’re only human and sometimes our brains need a rest. So I thought today I’d talk about a few things that help me keep on track and keep on top of everything I should be doing.
Write a To Do List
This may be an obvious one but I’d forget my head if it wasn’t attached, I literally cannot function without a to do list. So at the start of the week or perhaps on Sunday night why not write a list of all the things you need to achieve that week, then why not divide that further into smaller more manageable chunks for each day? There’s no point setting yourself 26 things to do in one day, it’s probably unachievable and then no matter how much you’ve achieved you’re going to feel like you haven’t done enough or that you’ve failed.
Try to plan what to do based on where you will be, would it be beneficial to have an errand running day where you get all the boring tasks out of the way so that you can have other more productive days of work? I like to look at my week and think when I am in Uni, Work and at Volunteering, this time is obviously blocked out so then it’s a case of working out when I will complete my Uni Work, Write blog posts, socialise and sleep!
My secret weapon when it come to list is the app Wanderlust. I’ve talked about it before in a monthly favourites (I know I’m a saddo), it’s basically a way of splitting up your to do list into different sections yet it’s all in the same place. For example I have an immediate to do list, a Blog To Do List and a To Buy list which is further divided into; Food (for when I go to the supermarket), a Wishlist (of items I’d like to buy myself) and Presents (in the run up to Christmas). It’s hard to explain, but trust me you need this app.
If you know where you’re going to be for the week ahead, planning your meals and cooking some of them in advance can save you time and money. If you do one big food shop and then spend a couple of hours cooking in bulk you won’t have to spend time running to the shops multiple times a week to try and scrape together a meal. Don’t forget to take into account your dinners for work, I like to try and take some pasta or Chilli to work or to the library with me, that way get more break time to yourself and you don’t have to break off from doing uni work to visit a cafe.
The One Touch Rule
This one might be handy for people who have a lot of unfinished tasks or are a bit messy. The one touch rule basically means don’t start a task if you can’t or won’t finish it. For example don’t open your email inbox until you can read through and reply to them all, or don’t start to tidy up a room unless you can finish it. I like to fit tasks in when I’ve got enough time such as leaving the washing up for a few more hours until I get home from work, instead of rushing to do it and then having to leave halfway through because I’ve run out of time.
Learn To Say No
This is one that I need to work on a bit more, I’m not saying be totally anti social and refuse all social events but often I find myself in danger of biting off more than I can chew because I don’t want to miss out or say no to people. However if you spread yourself too thin the quality of work or socialising tends to suffer. I try to balance Uni, Working, Volunteering in a few different places and as I’m a student I obviously like to socialise yet I always want to do more and now I’m in 3rd year I’m learning I’ve got to prioritise Uni over everything else. Juggling different aspects of life isn’t unique to being a student so learning to say no to things occasionally is good practice for anyone.
I’m sure you will have heard all of this before but hopefully this post will have served as a reminder to try and plan ahead to make life a little easier for yourself! What helps you stay organised? I’m always open to ideas, I love nerdy little stationary that helps me feel like I’ve got my life in order so I’m all ears!