Skip to content

Ten On Tuesday

In keeping with the spirit of the new year and positive intentions and such, the theme for Ten on Tuesday this week is Ten Ways to be More Organized. Now, I don’t want to brag or anything but I am a pretty organized person. I make lists and keep deadlines and stay on track. I live with someone, however, who is a hot mess when it comes to being organized. I’m not naming names but I’m pretty sure you know who he is. I’m writing my list with him in mind.

  1. Keep a “to do” list. I use my iPhone and the Toodledo app but a piece of paper and a pencil works fine, too.
  2. Keep your “to do” list realistic. You probably can’t finish 18 things on a Sunday afternoon and, while it’s admirable to try, you’re just going to wind up feeling defeated when you don’t get to everything. This leads me to . . .
  3. Prioritize. If you’ve got a long list of things to do, go through it and move the things that absolutely must get done to the top of the list.
  4. Purge. It’s easier to stay organized when you have less stuff hanging around. And really, you don’t need that old band outfit from 30 years ago. It will never fit you again and trust me, no one wants to wear it as a Halloween costume.
  5. Handle things once. Sort the mail as you open it, put your coffee cup directly into the dishwasher rather than leaving it on the counter, answer and delete emails as soon as you read them. Saving stuff for later really just makes more work for yourself in the long run.
  6. When you have an overwhelming task (like cleaning the garage – I’m talking to someone in particular here) spend just 10 minutes (0r 15 or 20 or whatever feels right to you) per day on that task. If you stay on track with a set amount of time you will make progress without feeling like it’s all futile.
  7. Make a place for everything and always put everything in it’s place. Seriously, this is probably the most important thing on this list other than keeping a to-do list. How much time do we all waste looking for stuff because we didn’t put it where it goes in the first place?! Before you put something down ask yourself “does this go here?” and if it doesn’t, well, put it where it goes.
  8. Clean as you go. I’m mostly thinking of cooking here but I’m sure it could also apply to home improvement projects and other things. Put away each item as you are finished with it and you won’t have anything to clean up when you are done. Oh, and close those damn cabinets, too.
  9. Plan the week ahead. This covers food shopping and meal prep, exercising, commuting schedules and attending meetings — all of it.
  10. Maintain a calendar. Fill it up with work schedules and vacation days, upcoming meetings and appointments, family and social obligations. Use it to keep deadlines and share the information with your spouse and family.

So there you have it, my tips on staying organized. Now if only he-who-shall-not-be-named will adopt some of my suggestions. Heh.

This Post Has 22 Comments

  1. Boy that list would apply to a certain someone in my household as well especially # 4,5,6,7,8. We’re leaving on a trip on Monday out of the country and I’ve been assigned to create the “list” of must haves when we leave the house. This is the result of traveling 20 minutes on a drive to Maine and having to turn around because an “essential” was left behind ( not mine).

  2. Yay! I am SO watching these lists today!

    (But how to make Dude better organized is not really a laudable goal. My goal is to tweak the environment to make it easier for him to be organized. I know what works for me, now I’m looking for stuff to try for him.)

  3. yeah, yeah, yeah. I need to do #s 4, 5, 6, and my personal arch-nemesis, #7. SHOW me the place and I’ll put it there; I just don’t know where that darned “place” is! For Dale: I’m with you, Man! We Oscars have to stick together. We married Felix Unger on purpose, right?!

  4. Great ideas for staying organized and maintaining it. I just started a weekly meal planner and it’s made grocery shopping and “what’s for dinner” so much easier (and more fun!). Being organized is its own reward.

  5. Apparently you-know-who and I share some similar attributes, although I do close the cabinet doors. Funny, I am extremely organized with things other than our house.

    When I make up my list, I do it before I read anyone else’s. But you wouldn’t be able to tell that if you compare our lists today – very similar!

  6. I broke my self-imposed rule for Ten on Tuesday today … I read your list before making my own. Now I will feel like I’m copying you! Ah, well, here I go …

  7. Oh, goodness – this is pointed RIGHT AT ME. I am so disorganized. One of the reasons I retired when I did was to get this house in order. I’m scouring these lists today to get some tips – I just downloaded ToodleDo on your reco, and will start filling it up with tasks. I’ve got some commission spinning projects and weaving projects that MUST be accomplished by the end of the month, and perhaps this will help me stay on task!

  8. I’m with you, lady — my much loved husband never saw a cupboard door he couldn’t leave open. Yet he complains vociferously about “letting the cold out” when I open the fridge and is unmoved when I point out that the butter and milk will not pass through a closed door.

    You clearly are a very organized person, judging by how very much you accomplish. I like to make lists, too, but I like to start at the bottom with the easiest stuff and work my up to the most demanding tasks. That way, I can run out of time and put the hard things off for another day…..

  9. OOoh, good list. I’m going to get that Toodledo app for certain. I’ve been trying to be better about putting things away when I am done with them at work, and it has really helped.

    Now if I can just apply the same principles at home. I’m about ready to disassemble my kitchen table because of all the junk that piles up on it. It always takes at least two or more hours every weekend to clear it off again. *grumble*

  10. I’m going to read this as soon as I clear off my computer desk…by the way, where did I put the mouse?

  11. I see you are referring to my hubby’s twin. If he’d just get his act together (and at 62, one would think it’s a done deal!), I’d have so much more free time.I wonder if shipping them off to a deserted island with only disorganized people would help cure them?

  12. Great list. I’m with you on cleaning as you go. Neal makes a mess in the kitchen when he cooks, then tries to pretend we have some sort of “cook doesn’t clean” deal. I promptly smack that one down!

  13. Ah, this list will go on my fridge… Best advice #5 ‘handle things once’. If only people here (meaning at my home) would follow that…..

  14. I didn’t do this Ten on Tuesday, but everything you said is absolutely true. If I lost my calendar I would have absolutely no idea what is going on in my life.

  15. super organize list.
    My oldest daughter (aka the genius artist) is someone whom, I have tried to help organize, with zero success… yet thru the years she has found new tools to help herself. For one, she sets the alarm on her iphone to beep when there is something that she needs to do (like pay a bill, or make an appointment) – and this actually works!

  16. Great list, I am going to try a few of those myself. I used to be very organized, but the three men in my life, ok to be fair, two of the three men for the most part, are taking me down with them. THere is only so much I can keep up with when there are others who aren’t trying.

Comments are closed.

Back To Top