How to Organize Your Life
Or, how do I clean up this mental mess?
Read on to learn how to organize your life....
Tired? Stressed? On a downward spiral? If so you are not alone. Please don’t despair. Is life supposed to be this way? No. Life should be enjoyable. So what can you do to change your current state of affairs? Get organized!
Yes, just like a closet, a dresser, a stack of bills or a bunch of photographs, you can organize your life. And just like organizing anything else, the process will bring you much needed relief. I will give you a brief overview here and then we will go more in depth about the organization of time, money, information, relationships, and your stuff in future articles which will be posted on the Self Improvement page.
The steps to organize your life are not hard. It just takes patience. When you organize your life you will feel that you are in control and not being controlled by external events. Follow the steps below and you will be feeling in control of your life in no time.
Take an Inventory:
Grab a journal. If you don’t have one just find a notebook around the house and rip the used pages out. Now write today’s date at the top. Then write for ten minutes each about the following topics:
How would you describe your current life to somebody else? (Are you working, in school, in a relationship? If so is the relationship good or bad? How about the relationships with family and friends? Are you happy with your living situation? How is your mood? How are you feeling physically?)
What are your goals for your life? What would your dream life look like? (What is your purpose? Why are you here? What do you want to do with your life? What would make you feel fulfilled? Writing a book, studying spirituality, getting a degree, creating a charity, recording an album?)
What do I need to do differently going forward to get from where I am to where I want to be? (Do you need to exercise, call your family more, get rid of your toxic relationship, quit smoking, start writing your novel, enroll in classes? Brainstorm what you need to do differently. If you keep doing the same things you may be in the same place next year.
Create a List of Daily Habits:
Using the information in your journal, create a list of daily habits that you would practice on an ideal day. I say “ideal day” because a lot of times people who are in a “down state” forget to do one thing and then abandon the whole program. The key to successfully getting on an upward spiral is to welcome imperfection. Strive for excellence, not perfection. For example, you may want to include exercising, drinking water, studying spirituality, working toward your goal, checking your calendar, etc… But sometimes when we are down and out, we even need reminders for basic things like brushing our teeth and flossing. Whatever you need a daily reminder for, put it on your Daily Habits list.
When I first started this practice, I got so good at doing each item each day that I decided to make it more challenging and attempted to squeeze yoga and meditation into my daily schedule. I quickly learned that this made it feel too much like “boot camp” and I went back to my old list. Set the bar lower and you will exceed your goal more times then when you come short. Hang this list on your refrigerator at eye level so you will see it every day!
Makeover Your Environment:
Many studies show that we are psychologically impacted by our environments. How do you expect to want to organize your life and start living to your fullest potential if your living quarters are dirty and messy? If you are living in someone’s basement right now or in a homeless shelter don’t say, “I’ll wait until I get a nice apartment or house to care.” Care now.
If you have no money use whatever cleaning products you have and organize your things to the best of your ability. Search the internet for homemade cleaning product recipes and organization on a budget ideas. Maybe you will need to use trash bags instead of boxes to organize your things. The trick is to make your current environment the very best you can right now. Even if you are moving tomorrow. Do it now! Be sure to add your routine housework steps and the straightening of your rooms to your list of daily habits!
There are other ways of helping your environment to help you, especially if you are depressed and just unmotivated in general. Let the sunshine into the room or turn on as many lights as you need to feel cheery without doing major damage to your electric bill. It is easier to be productive with music in the background instead of television. If you find music makes concentration hard try the light and easy variety. Let fresh air into the room when possible. If you have the time and money decorate the room. Keep the room clutter-free. There is an old adage, “A cluttered desk is a cluttered mind”. Same thing goes for cluttered rooms.
Shop for Your New Life:
Money may be an issue right now but the following are essential things that you will need to start rebuilding or creating the life of your dreams. If you can’t afford them see if a friend or family member has a spare. Future articles that I post will tell you how to use these in detail:
Calendar: Use this to write important dates in. I made a list of all my bills and when they are due and I hung it next to my calendar. I write my bill due dates and appointments in my calendar.
Binder and tabs: Organize the paper in your life with a binder with separating tabs that label each section. For example: Website usernames and passwords, grocery lists, projects, school, work, etc… You can use three hole punched folders in these sections as well. Alternatively, if you have a lot of information you can buy and label bins that stack on top of each other.
Small notebook: Instead of having a bunch of to do lists just have 1 ongoing one in this notebook. It should be small so you can bring it with you. Having just one place to keep to do lists is a great secret to organize your life.
Journal: Do a daily inventory on how you are feeling and what you should be doing to feel better. A journal is one of the most important tools you will need to organize your life.
Pursue a Goal:
Goals are something that give your life meaning and substance. They keep your mind occupied so you can’t dwell on bad thoughts and they keep you out of trouble. They keep you looking forward to tomorrow and in short they keep life interesting. Read my article called How to Achieve Your Goals to get started. A goal is a great way to instantly add meaning and excitement to your life and get back on an upward spiral!
Now take action and begin to organize your life now!
Here’s Wishing You New Success,
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