7 Habits of Insanely Organized and Productive People - How to Get Organized
I hate to break it to you but being messy and disorganized is costing you time and money. Tired of feeling all the place and never having enough time? Or maybe you have moments of being organized and productive but you can’t make it stick? Tune into this episode to go from scattered and inefficient to feeling in control and getting more done.
In this blog you will learn 7 habits of insanely organized and productive people so you can say goodbye to chaos and disorder and hello to peace of mind and efficiency.
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Professional organizer Andrew Mellen said, “"Being organized isn't about getting rid of everything you own or trying to become a different person; it's about living the way you want to live, but better." And I want to remind that adopting these habits isn’t about feeling ashamed or guilty about your current state of organization and productivity, but it is more about offering you habits to support your life and your goals.
For today’s blog I want to use the analogy of flying a plane to share these habits with you. After all getting what we want in life is all about the journey, and and you can think of these habits as the jet that will take you there. So think about the incredible efficiency it takes to get a plane from point A to point B, and think of yourself as the pilot.
Imagine being busy all the time with nothing to show for it. You might as well be a chicken with your head chopped off, aimless, frantic, and frenzied. First up, have a pre-determined route.Every pilot starts their journey with a planned out route and so do organized and productive people.
- Plan ahead based on your goals (YOUR destination).
- There’s a quote that I love that says, "
- Utilize time blocking and batching
- Prioritize and eat that frog. The hardest part of the flight is the take off.
- Prior preparation for the flight
- Youtuber Thomas Frank uses the analogy of a chef’s mise en place
Ever heard the phrase, “You have the same 24 hours as Beyonce.” But do you really? Do you have a father that obsessively trained you for success? Do you have a nanny? Do you have an assistant? Do you have Blue Ivy keeping you in check? My point is, even Beyonce isn’t Beyonce without help and support. And the most organized and productive people know this. That’s why my second set of habits are all about having a Co-Pilo aka support!.
- Second brain
- In fact there is an entire book on building a second brain that you might find useful
- "Building a Second Brain: Create a Productive and Creative Workflow with Evernote" is a book written by Tiago Forte that provides a step-by-step guide on how to use the note-taking app Evernote to create a personal knowledge management system.
- The book explains how to organize and curate information effectively to build a "second brain," a digital system that stores and connects knowledge for personal growth and productivity. It covers various topics such as capturing and organizing information, creating a personal knowledge management system, developing a workflow, and leveraging the system to enhance creativity and productivity. The author emphasizes the importance of building a second brain as a means to manage the overwhelming amount of information available in today's digital world and use it effectively to achieve personal and professional goals.
- In my video next week I’ll be sharing my personal organization system so be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out.
- Get support
- Virtual assistants
- House cleaners
In high school, one of my favorite classes was anatomy. In particular there was this one concept that changed the way I looked at life and it has stuck with me since then. And that concept is: Structure denotes function. This means that the very structure, shape, or form of something directly determines how it functions.
- This concept can be applied in various contexts. For example, in biology, the structure of biological molecules, such as proteins or enzymes, determines their function. In linguistics, the structure of a sentence, such as word order or grammatical rules, determines the meaning and function of the sentence. In architecture, the design and arrangement of a building's components determine its purpose and functionality. In social sciences, the structure of a society or an organization can shape its functions, roles, and interactions.
- Overall, the phrase "structure denotes function" highlights the importance of organization and arrangement in determining the purpose, behavior, and characteristics of a system or entity. Changes in structure can often lead to changes in function,
Which leads me to my next set of habits, which is to respect the plane. Dropping our analogy for a second, more specifically this means that the structure of your working environment will directly impact how productive it is. Here are some habits to maintain a work environment that supports organization and productivity.
- Everything has it’s place on the switchboard and is labeled
- "For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned." - Benjamin Franklin
- Declutter often. Insanely organized and productive people declutter regularly: Organized people tend to keep their physical and digital environments clutter-free. They regularly go through their possessions and eliminate anything that is no longer needed or used, and they keep their workspaces clean and tidy. They also regularly delete or organize their digital files, emails, and contacts.
- They also maintain a productive workspace. According to the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Cluttered workspaces can decrease productivity. Research has found that people are more productive and less stressed when their workspaces are clean and organized.
Next, up- Put the plane on cruise control
- Organized and productive people use software to make their lives easier. The book, The Four Hour Work Week, shares suggestion for software to help automate your work flow.
- Zapier: Zapier is a tool that allows users to automate tasks between different web applications, such as Gmail, Slack, and Trello. Zapier uses a simple interface to connect different apps and automate tasks based on triggers and actions.
- IFTTT: IFTTT (If This, Then That) is another tool that allows users to automate tasks between different web applications. IFTTT uses a similar interface to Zapier, but with a focus on simple "recipes" that automate tasks based on triggers and actions.
- TextExpander: TextExpander is a tool that allows users to create custom shortcuts for frequently used text, such as email signatures, website URLs, and common responses. TextExpander can save time and improve productivity by allowing users to quickly insert text without typing it out each time.
- Hootsuite (I recommend Later.com): They are tools that allow users to manage multiple social media accounts from a single dashboard. They can save time and improve productivity by allowing users to schedule posts, monitor social media activity, and engage with followers from a single interface.
- Trello: Trello is a project management tool that allows users to organize tasks and projects into boards, lists, and cards. Trello can help automate project management by allowing users to assign tasks, set due dates, and track progress in a visual and collaborative way.
- Also the book “Free to Focus” recommends these software aids:
- Evernote: a note-taking and organization tool that allows users to capture and store ideas, notes, and to-do lists.
- Google Drive: another cloud storage and file-sharing service that is free and offers collaboration features.
- RescueTime: a time-tracking and productivity tool that helps users understand how they spend their time on their computer or mobile device.
- Slack: a communication and collaboration tool that allows teams to communicate and share files in real-time.
- Boomerang: an email productivity tool that allows users to schedule emails, set reminders, and snooze messages.
- LastPass: a password manager that helps users create and manage strong passwords for different accounts.
- Focus@Will: a music service that provides productivity-boosting music to help users stay focused and motivated.
- I also recommend making a habit of using alrams and electronic reminders to keep you on task throughout the day.
- Organized and productive people also habitually use routines and systems to automate their lives.
- When it comes to routines, start with a making the most of your morning routine.
- Create a morning routine: A morning routine can set the tone for the rest of the day, and help you start the day off on the right foot. Design a morning routine that includes tasks such as exercise, meditation, and planning your day.
- Many people are most productive in the morning. Our brains are often more alert and focused earlier in the day, making it a good time to tackle complex tasks and creative projects.
- The hours between 10 am and 12 pm are often the most productive for many people. This is when our energy levels are typically highest, and we have already had time to settle into the workday.
- Afternoon productivity tends to dip after lunch. Many people experience a natural energy slump in the early afternoon, which can make it harder to focus and be productive.
- Late afternoon and early evening can be a good time for routine tasks. While complex projects may be harder to tackle in the late afternoon, it can be a good time to catch up on emails, organize files, or do other routine tasks.
- Night owls may be more productive in the evening or late at night. Some people's circadian rhythms make them more alert and focused later in the day, which can make it easier to be productive during non-traditional work hours.
- Regarding systems, consider creating a system for any task that you have to do multiple times in your personal or work life.
- Use things like templates and checklists to make these task more streamlined and automated
- Templates can help you save time and ensure consistency. Create templates for tasks such as email responses, social media posts, or project proposals.
Moving on, insanely organized and productive people are agile as gazelles and are able to course correct when needed.
- Time Auditing
- Identifying time-wasting activities: By tracking how you spend your time, you can identify activities that are not productive or necessary. This can help you eliminate or delegate these activities, freeing up more time for important tasks.
- Increasing productivity: By understanding how you spend your time, you can identify areas where you can be more efficient and effective. This can help you increase your productivity and get more done in less time.
- Improving time management skills: By tracking your time, you can learn to prioritize tasks, manage your schedule, and make better use of your time. This can help you develop better time management skills that will serve you well in both your personal and professional life.
- Reducing stress: When you have a clear understanding of how you spend your time, you can avoid overcommitting and feeling overwhelmed. This can help reduce stress and improve your overall well-being.
- Achieving goals: By tracking your time and focusing on your most important tasks, you can achieve your goals more quickly and effectively. This can help you feel more accomplished and fulfilled.
- Schedule buffer blocks
I finally get to use the metaphor of putting on your oxygen mask first. This last set of habits is all about taking care of the pilot. Insanely organized and productive people operate from a full cup.
- Avoid burnout -
- The Law of Diminishing returns
- The law of diminishing returns is an economic concept that applies to productivity as well. It states that as you increase the input of a certain factor (such as time, money, or labor), the output will initially increase, but after a certain point, the marginal return on that input will decrease.
- In other words, there is a point at which the additional effort or resources you put in will not produce a proportional increase in output or results. Beyond this point, the effort becomes less and less effective, and may even lead to negative returns.
- This concept is highly relevant to productivity because it highlights the importance of working smart, rather than just working hard. Productivity is not simply a matter of putting in more hours or effort, but rather of optimizing the use of your time and resources to achieve the best possible results.
- To apply the law of diminishing returns to productivity, it's important to identify the tasks and activities that yield the highest returns on your investment of time and energy. This means focusing on the most important and impactful tasks, and eliminating or delegating tasks that are less important or can be done more efficiently by someone else.
- In addition, it's important to set realistic goals and deadlines for yourself, and to take breaks and rest when needed. By doing so, you can ensure that you are working at your peak productivity level, and avoid burning out or becoming less effective over time.
- Ultimately, the law of diminishing returns teaches us that there is a limit to how much we can achieve by simply putting in more effort. To be truly productive, we must focus on working smarter, not harder, and optimizing the use of our time and resources to achieve the best possible results.
- Utilize Einstein time
"Einstein time" refers to a mindset that allows you to change your perception of time and become more productive. It is based on the idea that time is relative, and that you can control your experience of time by changing your focus and mindset.
According to the principles of Einstein time, there are two different ways of perceiving time: "clock time" and "relative time". Clock time is the traditional, linear concept of time that we are all familiar with. It is based on the idea that time is a fixed, measurable quantity that moves forward at a constant rate. In contrast, relative time is a more fluid and flexible concept that is based on the idea that time is relative to your experience of it.
Productivity is closely related to Einstein time because it encourages you to focus on what is important and to manage your time in a way that maximizes your effectiveness. By adopting an Einstein time mindset, you can become more productive by:
- Focusing on results, not tasks: Instead of just completing tasks for the sake of being busy, you focus on achieving results that are aligned with your goals and priorities.
- Prioritizing your time: You allocate your time and energy to the activities that are most important and impactful, and you avoid getting bogged down by less important tasks.
- Practicing mindfulness: You become more aware of how you are spending your time and energy, and you make conscious choices about how to use them.
- Adopting a growth mindset: You embrace challenges and view them as opportunities to learn and grow, rather than as obstacles that hold you back.
In essence, Einstein time is a way of thinking that can help you shift your focus from being busy to being productive, and from being reactive to being proactive. By adopting this mindset, you can become more effective and efficient in your work and personal life.
- Optimize your executive functioning
- Executive functioning is critical for organization: A study called "Executive Functions and Organizational Skills in Adolescents” found that executive functioning (including skills such as working memory, inhibition, and cognitive flexibility) was strongly related to organizational skills in adolescents. Individuals with weaker executive functioning may struggle more with organization, as they may have difficulty with planning, prioritizing, and self-regulation.
There are several ways to improve executive functioning, including:
- Exercise: Regular exercise has been shown to improve executive functioning. Exercise increases blood flow to the brain, which can improve cognitive function and reduce stress.
- Mindfulness meditation: Mindfulness meditation has been found to improve executive functioning, including working memory, attention, and cognitive flexibility. Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on the present moment and being aware of one's thoughts and feelings without judgment.
- Cognitive training: Cognitive training involves exercises and activities designed to improve specific cognitive skills, such as working memory, inhibition, and cognitive flexibility. Cognitive training can be done through computer-based programs or through more traditional methods, such as puzzles and games.
- Sleep: Getting enough sleep is important for cognitive function, including executive functioning. Sleep helps consolidate memories and improve cognitive flexibility.
- Healthy diet: Eating a healthy diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein can also help improve executive functioning. Research has shown that diets high in sugar and saturated fats can impair cognitive function.
- Breaks and downtime: Taking regular breaks and downtime can also help improve executive functioning. It's important to take breaks throughout the day to recharge and give your brain a rest.
Cheers to planning, manifesting, and enjoying your dream life and until next time Namaste!