Ready to get organized? If you just dive in without taking time to plan, you’ll likely get overwhelmed and the job won’t get done. Here are five simple secrets to make getting organized easier.
One of the most common questions I get on the subject of getting organized is, “Where do I start?” This is an excellent question because if you just dive in without taking some time to plan, there’s a good chance that you’re going to get overwhelmed, and the job is not going to get done. Here are the five simple secrets to getting started.
1. Get Motivated: Attitude is everything. If you say, “I can’t,” then there’s a good chance you won’t. However, if you say “I can,” there’s an excellent chance you will.
Take a few moments to think about how wonderful it’s going to be when you get that bedroom organized, or when you empty out that first box that has been sitting there for the past year. Dream about what you’re going to do with all the extra time you’re going to gain, simply by getting organized.
2. Set Goals: Make a list of all the things you want to organize, whether those items are your garage, your office, or your time. When you’re done with your list, choose ONE item on it. That is going to be your “major” goal.
Now, take that “major” goal, and break it down into smaller, bite-sized pieces. Those will be your mini-goals. One by one, you’re now going to achieve each of your mini-goals, until each one is completed. Once the final one is completed, you will have accomplished your major goal. Here’s an example:
Major goal: Organize the bathroom.
Mini-goal 1: Organize the medicine cabinet.
Mini-goal 2: Organize the cabinet under the sink.
Mini-goal 3: Weed out the magazine holder.
Mini-goal 4: Set up separate toiletry storage areas for each member of the family.
3. Establish Deadlines: “I’ll get to it, when I have time,” never works. You’re not going to have time, unless you schedule time. You should set a specific deadline for each of your mini-goals. Here’s an example:
Deadline for mini-goal 1: March 04
Deadline for mini-goal 2: March 11
Deadline for mini-goal 3: March 18
Deadline for mini-goal 4: March 25
4. Designate Rewards: In order to really get motivated, designate a reward for each mini-goal achieved by your specified deadline. It has to be something really enticing, that you will only give yourself WHEN you reach your goal. Your final mini-goal, the one that allows you to fully complete your major goal, should be the reward that most entices you. Here’s an example:
Reward for mini-goal1: Take a 15 minute nap in the backyard hammock.
Reward for mini-goal 2: Designate tomorrow as a “Chore Free” Day.
Reward for mini-goal 3: Listen to your favorite CD–all the way through.
Reward for mini-goal 4: Take yourself out for a nice lunch.
Post your goals, deadlines and pending rewards in a prominent place, where you’re sure to see them every day.
5. Apply Effective Organizational Systems: Ok, now you’re ready and it’s time to get started. Make sure you’ve determined what your best game plan is to easily achieve each goal.