If you spend most days flying by the seat of your pants – disorganized, confused, feeling stressed and wondering what is falling through the cracks – an investment of 30 minutes each morning can help.
Here are five daily habits that can change your life and make your day better organized. These action steps will take, at the most, six-minutes each. The five daily habits have made a great impact on my life and on the lives of those I serve as a professional organizer. I invite you to consider adopting them.
1. Take six minutes to make your bed shortly after you get up. Think of it as the transition that completes your nightly sleep time and begins your daily activities. Your bedroom will appear better organized and this task will provide you with your first successful accomplishment of the day. At the end of the day, you will find that the experience of entering a nicely made bed is both comforting and calming. Make this a ritual that affirms the importance of a restful night’s sleep and provides a symbolic beginning and end to the day.
2. Take six minutes to center your mind and body. Each morning, sit quietly for a few minutes to settle your thoughts and relax your body. Listen to the sounds around you; imagine yourself in a serene and peaceful place; feel the beat of your heart; pay attention to the inhaling and exhaling of your breath. This small investment in stillness will reap tremendous benefits throughout the day. You will enter the day with a greater sense of well-being and a clearer mind.
3. Take six minutes to eat something nutritious. No time for breakfast? Try to have on hand something quick and easy such as a banana, a bowl of cereal, piece of whole wheat toast, instant oatmeal or a granola bar. Get something into your system to kick start the day. Your mind and body will work better and your ability to be organized and operate effectively will increase.
4. Take six minutes to go over your "to do" list. One technique is to take a piece of paper and draw one vertical line down the middle and one horizontal line across the center to create four quadrants. Use each quadrant to list different kinds of tasks you are facing for this day. One quadrant can be for errands to run, another for appointments, a third for people to contact by email or telephone, and the fourth for action steps related to current projects on which you are working. Now that you have your list, take a second look and realistically assess whether or not your list is too big for one day. If so, eliminate the non-priority tasks. Making a daily to-do list will reinforce your awareness of what’s ahead and allow you to visualize it all getting done effortlessly. This will increase your chances of having a successful and productive day.
5. Take six minutes to delete all incoming emails that are obvious junk. Before you concentrate on the important business of the day, why not quickly clean out the spam and clutter in your in box. Not only will this reduce the amount of mail to which you need to pay attention, it will also bring what’s really important into better focus.
Total time invested: 30 minutes. Results: Priceless.