A room, desk, phone, notebook, home. All of these things can be organized. But what about adding an organized lifestyle to the mix? When I was in high school, I tried to be organized but only with simple things like my class notes and assignments. Now that I’m in college, I see organization as a much bigger picture. I’ve learned many different motivators and behaviors that help me be more organized in my day to day life. Being more organized has made me feel more satisfied and even improves my mood every day. Listed below are some discoveries I have made about being a more organized person with my lifestyle and in general:
Have a Planner
Keeping a planner has been very beneficial for me especially as a college student. I can lose track of assignments and important tasks from time to time, and a digital calendar just won’t help. If you’re someone who needs a physical, paper calendar like me, I fully suggest investing in a planner. Some planners even have times listed for each day so you can keep track of your tasks by the time of the day. I prefer planners that don’t list times but have plenty of writing space for each day since I need to have a full visual of my tasks. If you decide to keep a planner, it’s important that you get in the habit of checking it more than once a day. Once you finish a task, open your planner to check it off and see what else needs to be done. Looking at a complete to-do list at the end of the day is so rewarding! You can find a planner anywhere like Target, a book store or even online.
Clean Your Space
Cleaning is not for everyone, but it is absolutely necessary. I wasn’t a fan of cleaning until my late high school years. I have been cleaning my living spaces more in the past two years than I probably have ever done before. When I started college, I was hit by the realization that no one is going to clean for you. That realization continues to be in the back of my mind now that I live in an apartment. With that, I’ve learned a pretty important fact about myself: I cannot stand to live in filth. I wouldn’t call myself a clean-freak, but if I’m living in a messy environment then I will start to feel messy. I clean the communal areas, my bedroom and bathroom once a week in my apartment. This includes vacuuming, mopping, wiping down counters, dusting, sweeping, taking out trash and putting things in their place. Here’s my cleaning routine if you need some inspiration to start your own routine:
* “tidy up” = de-clutter/rearrange
- Sweep floors
- Wipe down counters, sink, stove, dining table with cleaning wipes
- Mop floors
- Take out trash
- *Tidy up cabinets and pantry
- Vacuum carpets
- Dust TV, TV stand, coffee table
- Wipe down coffee table with cleaning wipes
- Tidy up furniture and decor
- Vacuum carpets
- Make bed
- Tidy up bookshelf
- Tidy up closet
- Wipe down counters, sink, toilet, shower with cleaning wipes
- Scrub toilet bowl
- Mop floors
- Take out trash
- Tidy up medicine cabinet
To follow the list, make sure to have cleaning wipes, a vacuum, mop, and a toilet brush. All of these areas and everything in them are used every day which makes it even more important that they are cleaned once a week. A clean living environment is healthier to be around, mentally and physically. Make a reminder to yourself either on your phone or in your planner to clean one day a week! Even though this list is for normal weekly cleans, deep cleans can be done every three weeks. If you would like a post on deep cleans, let me know!
It’s difficult to find a balance between everything going on in life; I haven’t even found it yet! However, it’s never too early or too late to try and find a balance between social life, school life, free time and work time. I believe that I have a great balance between my social life and my school life. I’m social, but I also realize the importance of studying and productivity. I sometimes use social time as a reward for doing school work. For example, if I overachieve on an assignment and finish it then I’ll reward myself by getting together with friends. Also, I won’t skip class to be with friends. Rather, I’ll dedicate another time to see friends when we are all available.
The same goes for free time and work time. I’ll sometimes tell myself, “I won’t go on my phone or watch TV until I finish all my tasks.” If there’s a task hovering over you (we’ve all had those), don’t push it away! The earlier you finish that task, the better you’ll feel. Consider that when your brain is flooded with to-do lists. “Should I get these done now so I’ll have more free time later or just do them when I get to it?” If you have extra time while you’re asking yourself that, take advantage of it and be proactive! Learning how to balance every aspect of life earlier will most definitely be beneficial to you in the future. Your brain will have adapted more to time management which will make your day to day routines and tasks much more efficient.
These behaviors and motivators continue to help me become more organized and live a healthier lifestyle. I encourage you to try one of them and see how you feel! How do you stay organized? Let me know!