Organisation is a topic close to my heart. As a teacher, you have to be organised, and you have to encourage your students to be organised too. I think I'm very organised most of the time, but every so often I have a mess up - the joys of being a flawed human!
As a child and a young teen, however, I was hugely disorganised, and I found just getting things done very stressful. I would frequestly be late, with the wrong equipment or in the wrong place at the wrong time. It really used to upset me an awful lot. Then, in my early twenties, I decided to take action and I turned a major corner. I worked and worked and worked at it, and now I have lots of strategies and ways to keep things running correctly a good percentage of the time. A few of my faves are:
Spend time organising a calendar. So simple, so basic, so vital. I actually have three that I co-ordinate up a couple of times a month - I have an Erin Condren planner (because I'm a sucker for shiny, pretty stationery), a Google calendar (so useful, and easy to access on my phone, at work, at home, anywhere), and Matthew and I also have a joint calendar with Matthew on the wall of the kitchen. This is a new addition, but means with school events, work trips, social engagements eyc., we can each keep track of what's going on.
To-do lists are a good thing - within reason! I used to be the queen of the great long list, but now I limit myself to a maximum of seven action items per day. I used to add everything to my to-do list, including the day to day stuff, but now my to-do list, whether it's one thing or four things or seven things, is all stuff I need to get done as soon as possible.
Have 'homes' for things that you need to access quickly. For example, my keys have two homes - in my bag or on the third step. My phone is either with me, or in my bag, or next to my bed. My important documents life in the box or the file. Ibuprofen, inhalers and benadryl? Cupboard above the kettle :).
Getting rid of stuff helps with organisation too, I think. I love to have lots of books, DVDs and stationery, and that's unlikely to ever change. 'Stuff', however, I am whittling away at, every month. My new rule is that for something to come in to the house now (books etc. aside, because I live for books!), it either has to be new and useful (i.e. a griddle pan, on the wish list at the mo!), new in replacement of something else (hello, tin opener!), or something where there's currently nothing (for example, our spare rooms need furniture - they are rather barren!). To buy something new, I generally make sure something else leaves the house!
I meal plan in a flexible way, and plan our shops in advance. I make lots of soups, stews and sauces on quieter weekends and freeze them down for healthy, yummy, weeknight suppers.
I have a combination of bank accounts and clear goals for saving, giving, spending. As with most things I believe in being gentle with yourself and flexible too, but these goals are important. I need the flexibility so when the unexpected occurs (hello, big giant scary dentist bill) I can react and roll with it, but keeping the goals solid is so important too!
I am still learning how to be organised, but it's getting better all the time. I love finding other tips and tricks, so this link up should be great fun! I look forward to gleaning some new ideas. I also love finding ideas here and there on the internet - here are a few of my recent pinterest faves!
I'm using these printables at the moment (when it's not crazy busy!) and they're making food shopping *so* much easier!
We've started using these tips around the house and it's really helping! 60 hour weeks and organising our home is a real challenge, but we make progress each month!
This is a one day ambition, ha!
I'm toying with the idea of doing this next month. 31 days to get organised...
We are working on routines for cleaning, to make the time we spend cleaning useful.
Looking forward to reading all the tips!