Stay Organized: How to Stick to Your New Year’s Resolution
Whether its clothes we haven’t worn in years, piles of junk mail on the kitchen table, or mounds of disarrayed sports equipment, tools, or old furniture, we all get stressed from time to time due to too much clutter. The beginning of a new year is often the time when we face this realization after we’ve cleaned up from the holidays. If you’re reading this, it’s likely that becoming more organized is one of your New Year’s resolutions and you know you need some help getting there.
Organizational goals are a necessity, so it’s important to take your time to create a successful plan that fits your lifestyle and needs. Here are a few helpful ideas selected to help you with your New Year’s organization resolution.
Keep a Task List
It may seem simple, but the first step is crucial: keep a task list!
As much as we all try to remember our to-do’s, having them written down allows us to see the big picture, come up with a plan of attack and set realistic timeframes to complete each task. Everyone has a different way they like to keep track of their task lists and goals — some prefer to do it digitally while others utilize a whiteboard, planner, or notepad. If you are so digitally inclined, we recommend using the Reminders app on your smartphone or downloading the Todoist or Microsoft To Do from the app store.
Regardless of where you keep your list or how you’ll want it to be easily accessible no matter your location. You can access and update it quickly as tasks arise and your goals are achieved.
Consolidate Your Calendars
We all have work-related, personal events and general things to do each week. Using multiple calendars and having reminders in various locations only increases your time managing them and the potential of missing an important engagement. Cue the anxiety!
Use a digital calendar to create tasks and schedule events in one place. With digital calendars, you can color-code dates or appointments to help you stay organized. If you have an iPhone, you can ask Siri to add or change an event and you can even share your calendar with others easily.
Try using these calendars for scheduling personal time, too. Whether it’s focus time, rest, organization, or laundry — putting aside time for these tasks is a great way to hold yourself to them!
TIP: If you have a shared calendar at work or home, you can tag the events as private so the details of the events you specify are not visible.
Let’s Grow Together
Once you’ve created a task list and managed your calendar, it’s time to execute! It’s easier to begin with one area that’s causing the most distress and start to work your way out, leading to smaller tasks. In other words, tackle the big things first.
How can you decide which room contributes to your most distress? Consider taking a stroll of your home and noting everything you’d like to do in order to have it function the way you prefer. The room that has the largest task list – save for last. You may be surprised, but the most common reason people avoid getting organized is that they give up! That can occur from not having a plan but more often than not it’s due to being overwhelmed. Again, start with the easiest room and work your way up to the most difficult.
TIP: Clean your most disorganized room once a week (and you can make time to do so by adding it to your task list and calendar!)
The question remains: how do you start to tackle a mountain of clutter?
- Be prepared. Have a work-space dedicated where you can create piles, (think trash, donate, refile). Refile is for items you will store elsewhere in your home. Tools like trash bags, plastic bins with lids, and cardboard boxes will facilitate this endeavor.
- Pick up large and small items from the floor first. Then, do the same with your furniture. Then, start with one corner of the room and move clockwise as you declutter.
- Decide on additional storage needs you may have as you move through and make notes for future purchases. For example, you may have discovered the dog’s chew toys don’t have their own bin, there’s nowhere to put coats or you’ve outgrown your laundry hampers.
Remember, the key to successfully decluttering and organizing your home will be discipline and hard work.
Learn from Success
When you reach your organization goals, be sure to take note of the steps you took and any behaviors that have changed as a result. Take note of any steps that did not work or were redundant. We recommend you store these notes digitally for safekeeping and easy access. Consider your process will be fluid and ever-changing. You’ll learn which organization methods work best for you and adjust accordingly.
According to Business Insider, only 8% of New Year’s resolutions are kept. While that may be a discouraging statistic, note that your New Year’s resolution to stay organized is not in vain.
Keeping a digital task list and symbiotic calendar will prepare you to tackle your goals. Your calendar and task list, in tandem with the proper tools and a pragmatic approach, will build your confidence to execute.
Interested in learning more about getting organized or The Closet Works’ custom closet installations? Contact us today for a free design consultation with our professional designers.