We all want to be organized and we all know that one person who never misses an appointment and has their schedule lined up to a tee. Good news is that no one is actually born naturally organized! Everyone can work to improve healthy habits and methods to help stay on top of everything. I consider myself to be fairly organized and while I am no Marie Kondo, I have certainly picked up a few tricks from my years of experience as a student.
1. Calendars are your Best Friend.
Creating my calendar is where I began my own journey and if you are a beginner in organizing, this is a fantastic place to start!
Personally, I use the Apple calendar application on my laptop and iPhone, trust me it has done wonders for planning ahead. There are other calendar apps like the Google Calendar or My Study Life if you want to focus on school work, those are great options too. I just prefer the Apple calendar because of how effortless it is to have all of my information so readily available to me on all my devices.
Regardless of which app you like the best, creating categories for all of your activities to be sorted into AND color coding them is a must. It’s a great way to make the calendar both look aesthetically pleasing and things are way easier to find.
Your categories can be sorted however you want, for me I did separate colors for classes, tests, birthdays, working out, jobs, etc. I also chose to use a rainbow color scheme which adds a nice pop.
My calendar has become a necessity for me, especially as my days get longer and busier it’s so helpful to have all the information at my fingertips. It basically keeps my dead on my shoulders whenever I am looking to plan another activity and helps tremendously in communicating with my boss for work.
2. Always Utilize your Notes App.
In my opinion, the notes app is widely neglected and with all the new updates it has become a great place to write things down and check off what you have accomplished. It is where I usually write out all the things I have to do in school, my errands, and workouts I use on a daily basis. In order to avoid everything becoming lost and jumbled, I created specific folders for everything. Having a system like this makes it really easy for me to focus on the important stuff.
Within my Classes/School folder is where I have notes for homework, volunteering, and information about package hours in my dorm. I especially love using notes for homework because I can check things off my list one by one and also list things in order of importance. My Errands folder has a TO DO note, Monthly Budget note, and a Grocery list note, all of which are super convenient places to jot down anything that needs to be done or check in on my finances for the month. The Workout folder is helpful to me just because it has a bunch of workout progressions on hand for me, from lifts to core workouts it saves me time in the gym deciding what to do next. Finally and most importantly, my Self-care folder is a great place to write down little things that make you happy and even affirmation quotes that motivate you!
3. Google Drive.
While notes are for more personal use, the Google drive is where I put all of my school work documents and projects. I have been using the drive since high school and have since accumulated a ton of stuff. There came a point last summer where I could barely find anything, so I went through everything and organized it into folders. Now, this is just how I chose to do things and its whatever works best for you but I sorted all my files into various folders labeled College, High School, ROTC, Her Campus, and Important Information.
Within my College folder, I have another folder for Freshman year and then each term with all the classes I took. Having folders and tabs to sort everything helps tremendously and saves so much time when looking for that one paper or project.
4. Journal. Journal. Journal.
This has to be my favorite way to organize just because it is also a great relaxing activity at the end of a day in preparation for the next day. Journaling for me is mostly organizing each day in terms of my classes and what I need to do but it sets me up so well for the next day and really helps with my productivity. I recommend getting a journal with weekly calendars as well as room to write within the lines, also getting different colored pens is a fun little touch.
I usually start by laying out what classes I have, just like on my calendar on my laptop, but writing it out really helps. Then, I add in when I will be going to the gym, getting food and any other planned activities. This allows me to plan for each day and be more efficient with my time because I never have to think about what I should do. Typically I fill in the entire week and then the night before each day I add ‘Today’s Goals’.
A journal can make you feel super accomplished with every day and physically taking the time to write it down and check things off is super satisfying!
5. Make these Steps your Own and Stick to it!
These are just some of the things that help me stay organized and productive but setting up a system that works for you and your everyday life is what’s really important. The most essential part of this is creating a system that is your own and doing what makes you satisfied. I hope some of these tips can help inspire you to create your own method of organization. Happy planning!