Why do so many of us have trouble getting things done? If this is an area of your life where you're frustrated, take a closer look at your organizational habits.
Experts agree there are four main reasons we don't accomplish more:
- We fail to set priorities.
- We procrastinate.
- We bite off more than we can chew.
- We try to do everything perfectly.
Getting organized helps us get rid of these bad habits. Here's what we need to do:
#1 – Decide what's important.
Look at the daily tasks in terms of value, with A's (high value), B's (medium value) and C's (low value). A's are "the musts" or the "attention getters."
#2 – Find things faster.
We spend 20 to 30 percent of our lives looking for things. This certainly wastes time. Organization is the key. There are good reasons for old axioms, such as "a place for everything and everything in its place." There is less confusion in our lives if we know where things are.
#3 – Make a schedule and stick to it.
Schedule times for what must be accomplished, but include time for inevitable distractions or "do nothing" time. Scheduling helps reduce worry about what you must do.
#4 – How not to procrastinate.
Break tasks down into manageable bits. Do not agonize about the past; stick to your decisions. Do not fritter away time on minor matters.
#5 – Be flexible.
You do not have to do everything perfectly. Flexibility with little things frees you for the important ones. here are four ways to use time more efficiently.
- Share (What jobs can be done cooperatively?)
- Swap (Work out a deal regarding your task preferences.)
- Simplify (Always think in terms of your convenience.)
- Seize the moment (When do you feel your best? Do the most difficult jobs when you are at your strongest.)
#6 – Focus
People who get the most done are single-minded in completing each task. They do not let interruptions get in the way; they finish things.
#7 – Lists and notes
You can keep track of things by making lists and keeping the list visible all day. Use it as a guide, and things will not pile up.
Most of the time experts agree that a balanced lifestyle (time out for recreation and exercise) is crucial. People with many different claims on their time have only so much emotional resilience. We need to give ourselve some "downtime" to relieve the feelings of stress, and we need to be realistic about our strength and limitations. Even the most organized and flexible people know when to call it quits.