How to Stay Organised

How to Stay Organised

I have been balancing several dance classes a week, school, homework, later uni, work, and social life since the age of 5. So staying organised to get everything done and still have time for myself has always been mandatory. Since entering the blogging world 2 years ago and going free-lance last year (so adding more things to my already busy schedule) staying organised has become more important than ever.

Balancing different “jobs”, different clients, co-workers, meetings, my blog, rehearsals and parties (and still get enough sleep) can quickly become hectic. In order to be able to balance everything I have developed a system to stay organised and save myself some precious time. I haven’t invented anything, maybe you use the same rules, but it might help some of you that are starting to feel underwater.

1. Plan in advance

If you are afraid of forgetting something, or need to get specific things done next week, plan ahead. Plan you week out each Sunday, starting by the things you cannot avoid like appointments or work meetings, and work around that. From the most important tasks to the least important. When I say “important”, I mean what is important for you. For instance for me, my dance classes and rehearsals I might have are “important” so I will work my schedule around that. If going to see a specific film with friends is what’s important for you this week, work around that. I’m of those who believe personal life and hobbies should come first. Even if that means waking up at 5am the next morning in order to get work done to then be able to finish at 4 or 5pm.

2. Schedule

Nowadays we can schedule nearly everything. Working in marketing and communication part of my job is to manage several social media accounts for different clients and sometimes blogs too, as well as my own. If I had to post everything manually (Facebook, twitter, Instagram and blogposts) I wouldn’t have time for anything else. So schedule anything you can using Hootsuite or BufferΒ for example, in order to not forget anything and save time. I also like to schedule things on my phone’s calendar. This way I get notifications when I need to do something specific.

stay-organised-1

3. Calendars & Excel sheets are your best friends

If you are working with other people on different projects you will know that communication can become a huge time waster… Sharing your schedule on an excel sheet on Google Drive or a shared calendar, that everyone you work with can have access to, will save you a lot of time. People can easily see when you are available or when you both have a meeting planned.

4. Colour code

Excel is great because it allows you to use colours. Using colours will allow you to colour-code your tasks. For instance you could have a colour for each of your clients, a colour for each type of task or each subject you are studying. This way you can easily see when everything is planned for, and if you need to add tasks during the week you can group similar tasks easily. For instance if I need to plan more Facebook posts for a client, I will group that task with a similar task I need to do for another client.

5. Take your time

One of the advantages of planning is that you know exactly what you need to do each day. With time, how long you will need to complete each task. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about the other tasks on your “to-do list”. You know everything will get done, because you have planned everything.

6. Don’t be to optimistic

At the beginning this can be quite hard. We sometimes feel that we have so many things to do, and want to do everything. So we plan to many things for the same week. It’s best to plan less things, be more realistic, and add things as you go along. If you have some spare time, get ahead of your schedule. However if you don’t, you will have very little left on your list. Which is best than a long list, trust me!

7. Break up the work

Sometimes, some tasks feel huge and we just don’t want to get started with them. For instance, for one of my clients I need to think out of the box and find ideas for a field I am new to. When I know I have to plan new posts I sometimes lack motivations. So I break up the work in several smaller tasks. I start with looking for new ideas, then I find the photos and at last I write the posts. Not doing these 3 tasks the same hour, or day helps me get the job done.

stay-organised-2

8.Β Don’t multi task

If you are easily distracted avoid multitasking. When you have decided to complete a certain task, finish it before moving on to another one. If you get an idea, write it down for later, don’t try and complete several tasks at the same time. Don’t hop from one to another. In the end you will just end up wasting time.

9. Do not put things off

When you have a lot to do, the worst thing you can do is put things off. If you have revision to do, or a paper the hand in, plan to do it as soon as possible. In this case breaking up your work load might be the best thing to do. So plan several moments to work on these tasks during the week. If important things come along during the week, make space for them. Cancel or shift less important things you had planned.

You probably have guessed that the key to staying organised, is staying focused. By staying focused on what you need to do and knowing when you need to do everything you will keep a clear mind. Β You will also feel more in control. This will help you get everything done in time and also stay motivated. But I have another blog post coming up on how to stay motivated, so more on that coming soon!

What do you do to stay organised ? What tip would you give to someone that wants to be more organised ?

See you soon, love

Perrine

 

54 Comments

  1. Lea
    03/25/2018 / 8:07 pm

    Loving all your tips especially the last one is just too important. Once you’ve put one thing off it messes with all your other things and you can start organizing again.
    Thanks for sharing. Lea, xx
    http://asnippetoflife.com

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:32 am

      Exactly πŸ™‚ thanks hun x

  2. 03/25/2018 / 8:09 pm

    These are some really great tips on how to stay organized! I definitely agree that we need to plan time to relax or have fun with friends because that’s super important too. I haven’t gotten into setting up excel sheets to plan yet, but I want to, I feel like it’d be so helpful and organized. Great post!

    Megan xx insidemegansmind.com

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:32 am

      I’m sure you will find them very useful πŸ™‚ x

  3. 03/25/2018 / 8:12 pm

    The buffer apps are so useful for updating twitter and instagram, I couldn’t go without them now! Planning in advance is really important too as some weeks I don’t have the time to write any blog posts at all x

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:31 am

      Don’t know what we would do without those apps haha x

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:31 am

      Thanks lovely πŸ™‚ x

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:30 am

      Thanks hun! And yes colour coding is the future lol x

  4. 03/25/2018 / 10:45 pm

    I loved all of your tips! I’m the worst at putting stuff off. I’m one of those people who works a bit better under pressure so I’m forever leaving things a little late. I’m really organised with some areas of my life and not at all with others. I’m either on top of everything or it’s a bit of a mess so I’ll definitely be trying a few of these things out x

    Sophie
    http://www.glowsteady.co.uk

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 9:30 am

      I used to be the same, better under pressure, but now it stresses me out lol x

  5. 03/26/2018 / 1:16 pm

    Lovely post! I think there are some fabulous tips to take away from here. Lol I multitask a lot though cause I’m always trying to juggle so many things πŸ™ But I love color coding stuff with sticky notes and highlighters and dropping reminders around.

    xx Lena | https://lenadeexo.com

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:03 pm

      I used to multitask a lot as well, but really we get more things done when we don’t πŸ˜€ x

  6. 03/26/2018 / 4:15 pm

    Such a useful post! I think the ‘Don’t be too optimistic’ bit is really true as well; I always set myself goals that are waaaaaayyy too ambitious and then get disheartened when I inevitably can’t complete everything. I think having a realistic mindset is the best way to be productive!

    Also, I really love the layout of your blog, it’s very easy to navigate and very pretty! x

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:04 pm

      Totally agree πŸ™‚
      Aww thanks hun x

  7. 03/26/2018 / 4:21 pm

    Some really helpful tips!

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:04 pm

      Thanks πŸ™‚ x

  8. 03/26/2018 / 4:53 pm

    I think you’ve included some really important tips here – especially β€˜not putting things off’! I worked two jobs while at college, so I know just how important it is to prioritise things and not put things off, and I can’t stress how important it is to do that.. πŸ™Š

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:05 pm

      Exactly! πŸ™Š x

  9. Kanra Khan
    03/26/2018 / 4:57 pm

    Hi! Do you think you could share more about how you’re using Excel sheets to organize your tasks? I’m very curious about it!
    Personally, I’m currently working with just a good old fashioned pen and paper, but Excel sheets look so much more organized and easy to edit/ readjust, so I’m curious about how it all works!
    Thank you for sharing!
    Kanra Khan

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:06 pm

      Of course, I could do a blogpost about it πŸ™‚ will have to think about the best way to talk about it πŸ™‚ x

  10. 03/26/2018 / 5:00 pm

    I am a pretty organised person so I loved reading this post. I’m a big fan of to-do lists and planning in advance. I am guilty of multitasking, though – I don’t think I’ll ever change when it comes to this!

    Nicola
    http://www.nicshealthylife.co.uk

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:06 pm

      I thought I would never be able to stop too, but since I’ve found out I get more done since stopping, I won’t be going back lol x

  11. Fatimah
    03/26/2018 / 5:04 pm

    I love all these tips, I especially love colour coding and highlighting things as well to help me stay organised xx

    FATIMAH β€’ ROSEYGOLDBOX
    http://www.roseygoldbox.blogspot.co.uk

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 5:07 pm

      Thanks πŸ˜€ x

  12. 03/26/2018 / 5:15 pm

    This is a great post, so many useful tips! I’m a big fan of colour coding everything, it really helps me stay organised. Creating to-do lists and forward planning are key to staying on top of everything. Thank you for sharing Perrine πŸ’• xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 7:38 pm

      Thanks lovely! x

  13. 03/26/2018 / 5:29 pm

    There are some great tips here. I used to be really disorganised, but the last few years I’ve really had to shape up! Excel is my friend, procrastination is definitely not! #TeacupClub

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 7:39 pm

      I feel we all hit that stage, but it’s for the best πŸ™‚ x

  14. 03/26/2018 / 8:02 pm

    Some fab tips here, especially colour coding (so useful) and Google Docs, which is a life saver, so useful for everyone to be able to update and work on the latest version all the time! Thank you for sharing πŸ™‚ x

    Lisa | http://www.lisasnotebook.com

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 8:08 pm

      Totally agree for the Google Docs!
      Thanks πŸ™‚ x

  15. 03/26/2018 / 8:34 pm

    Such great tips! Need to do this!

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 8:58 pm

      Thanks x

    • Ola Banana
      03/26/2018 / 8:59 pm

      Aww thanks x

  16. 03/26/2018 / 9:01 pm

    These are some good tips!

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 8:17 am

      Thanks πŸ™‚ x

  17. 03/26/2018 / 10:59 pm

    lovely post, definitely going to be using some of these tips as the new semester starts!

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 8:16 am

      Hope it helps πŸ™‚ x

  18. 03/26/2018 / 11:58 pm

    These are all such great tips! Especially the one about not multi-tasking it’s actually inefficient and you end up spreading yourself thin instead of focusing on getting each task done really well. Love it!

    Ellie | Scotch & Stilettos

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 8:16 am

      Exactly πŸ™‚ thanks x

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 8:16 am

      Haha that’s a good start ^^ I used to be super unorganised, but now I couldn’t go back to that lol x

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 10:51 am

      It does indeed πŸ™‚ x

  19. 03/27/2018 / 12:41 pm

    My main method of staying organised is notes and lists. Lists, lists, lists. All the lists. I have a list for more or less everything!

    • Ola Banana
      03/27/2018 / 7:37 pm

      Haha same, but most of the time I forget the list lol x

  20. 03/31/2018 / 9:04 pm

    I am definitely going to be trying some of these tips now! Planning out everything is definitely the key into keeping yourself organised without getting into a panic!

    Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk/

    • Ola Banana
      04/01/2018 / 1:01 pm

      Exactly πŸ™‚ hope they help you x

  21. 04/03/2018 / 3:17 pm

    Great tips! I think i’m guilty of multi-tasking too much and then eventually forgetting the most important stuff. Will work on using a physical calendar. I think it helps me more than a virtual one! Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

    • Ola Banana
      04/03/2018 / 3:31 pm

      Physical calendars are great πŸ™‚ I prefer them too, but when working with several people, nothing beats digital lol x

  22. 04/04/2018 / 8:13 pm

    Scheduling is such an important thing for me to stay organised and I personally think it’s the most successful way! If you have a laid out plan infront of you, you’re much more likely to get it done and within the time frame you’ve set too! I have a habit of letting myself get overwhelmed so not putting too much on there or being too optimistic is deffo a good thing to remember!
    Alice Xx

    • Ola Banana
      04/04/2018 / 8:21 pm

      Thanks lovely x

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