19 Jun Five steps to becoming more organised
Over the past few months, we’ve been sharing our top tips on social media about how to get all your ducks in a row and become more organised in both your work and personal life. Yes, we know, this is easier said than done for many of us, but nevertheless we thought it would be useful to put of all these steps into a handy check-list for you to refer to whenever you have a spare five minutes over a cuppa. And if you don’t have five minutes to yourself, then see Step Two!
Some of these may sound simple, but the most effective way of becoming organised is by constantly reminding yourself to follow a few of these each week until they become second nature.
Step One: Write everything down
People think I have a fantastic memory but I don’t; I simply write EVERYTHING down as it occurs. Whether scribbling on your office notepad or kitchen calendar; typing items directly into Notes on your phone; or logging everything in a CMS (Content Management System) such as Monday, Slack or Trello – as long as you have it all where you know you can access it, it doesn’t matter.
Step Two: Take time out to plan ahead
Anyone who knows me will know how much I harp on about my Sunday night planning session. By religiously spending half an hour looking at my diary, as well as the children’s school calendar, I can ensure sure my week is fully planned and that there are no clashes in my schedule. I can also keep an eye on upcoming deadlines to make sure I haven’t missed anything, and that I’m prioritising the right clients and the right work, while also keeping my family happy, of course. Just taking half an hour out to plan makes my life so much easier. This step is especially important if you’re a working parent, so if you only follow one of these steps this week, try to make sure it’s this one!
Step Three: If you can do it now – then do it now!
As Charles Dickens wisely asserts: “Never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time”. For many of us, procrastination is a common theme both in our work and personal life, as we mull things over and contemplate how best to tackle complex situations or problems, all the while putting off actually completing them until another day. And then another day, and another, until we realise the problem is growing harder to solve. Our advice is – once you’ve had a think about how to do something – don’t leave it until the next day to complete. You’ll be surprised at how much relief you feel as you suddenly have more time to focus on the easier or more enjoyable items on your to-do list.
Step Four: Everything has its place
As the saying goes, “a tidy desk is a tidy mind”. Making the conscious decision to put things away, whether it be in a cupboard at home or the right folder on a computer, can make a huge difference later on. Spending a few minutes putting something in a logical place can save you literally hours of stress trying to remember where you saved that password for today’s client agenda, or where you shoved away that fancy dress costume for tomorrow’s school party.
Step Five: You can do anything, but you can’t do everything!
And finally…some of you may know this as our company motto, and it’s true. It relates to several of our clients, and even our own team from time to time, as we try to do too much with our time, instead offloading, or delegating, to other teams who can help ease the burden. Taking on too much and then expecting to be able to juggle it all successfully is a common trait especially, I think, in working parents. Sometimes we simply need to remind ourselves we can’t do everything, pick out the things we want to do, and focus on doing them well, while seeking help with the rest. Remember to take care of yourself, as “you can’t pour from an empty cup”.
If there’s anything we can do to lighten your weekly load – be it bookkeeping or finance management, diary management, or general administration – then remember Step Three: don’t procrastinate and speak to us today!