Organization is something that a lot of people struggle with. However, it is the key for some of the most successful people. Take a look at what some of the most organized people in the world do.
Here are 100 habits of super organized people:
- They plan the night before
Simply taking 15 minutes at night to plan the next day can be one of the best things to start the next day off on the right foot.
- They only have one to do list
Keeping everything on one list eliminates any confusion. If you store everything in one area, you are less likely to lose track of it.
- They spend one hour going through and addressing email
Make sure that you take the time to thoroughly go through your email and respond to what requires a response. If it doesn’t require a response, file it or delete it.
- They clear their desk of paper piles
If you have paper on your desk that requires an action item, put it on your to do list and file it for reference. If it is no longer needed, trash it.
- They have a morning routine
Get your day started off right. This routine will be a little bit different for everyone, but each morning should look very similar.
- They have an evening routine
Wrap up the day just like you started it. This might include planning for the next day.
- They clean up as they go throughout the day
Don’t wait until the day or week is over to clean everything up. Do it as you go. This will be faster and you will avoid feeling overwhelmed.
- They put their clothes in the laundry basket
The simple act of putting your clothes in the laundry will minimize the clutter.
- They wash their dishes when they are done
This will save you a ton of time. Plus the dishes are easy to wash if all the food isn’t stuck to the dishes.
- They take a lunch break
This will help you refresh your mind so that you focus on the rest of your day.
- They open up their snail mail daily
This is another thing that is much easier to stay on top of as you go. Letting it build up can be a real pain.
- They write things down
It is estimated that we have roughly 50,000 thoughts per day. You will probably want to remember at least one of those. Write it down.
- They make schedules and stick to it
Make sure to put things on your calendar and stick to it. What gets scheduled, gets done.
- They set deadlines
Setting deadlines keeps things moving along. Make sure to put a line in the sand and put a date on it.
- They don’t procrastinate
Maybe this is easier said than done, but take action. Keep moving forward.
- They give everything a home
Make sure to put everything in their place. If they don’t have a place, then find one for them.
- They get rid things
You have to purge things at some point. It’s that simple.
- They keep only what is necessary
If it is not essential to what you are you doing or trying to achieve, get rid of it.
- They have a place to get rid of stuff
Maybe this is your local donation center or a family in need. Decide what this will be ahead of time.
- Stay away from bargains
This will bring more things into your environment that you probably do not really need.
- They set goals
Make sure the goals are specific and have a clear due date.
- They stay positive
Look at everything as a glass half full and not half empty. Avoid people that don’t think this way as well.
- They are decision makers
You want to make sure that you are decisive. This will keep the procrastination away.
- They don’t try to be perfect
You need to realize that perfection doesn’t exist. At some point, you have to ship the product. Adjust as you go.
- They collect
Have a place where you can collect things throughout the day to be processed at a later time. You need this for both your physical environment and your digital environment.
- They process
Have set time when you process everything you have collected in your inbox each day. This will help you stay on top of things.
- They organize their thoughts
Take sometime each day to make sense of the great ideas you had that day. This will ensure that they do not get lost in the shuffle.
- They do a weekly review consistently
Schedule a time each week to review your list. This is essential to staying on top of things and keep things from falling through the cracks.
- They ask for help
If there is something that someone else can do, delegate it. Spend your time on the most valuable action items.
- They unitask, not multitask
Do not fragment yourself. Focus on one task at a time. This will help prevent feeling like you aren’t making any traction on your projects.
- They know when they do their best work
Figure out when you work best. Some people work better in the morning while others work better from 9:00 p.m. – Midnight. Find what works best for you and work during that time.
- They are financial aware
Stay on top of where your money is going. Have a plan for it on paper and on purpose as Dave Ramsey says.
- They have a ubiquitous capture device
Never be caught without something to capture your ideas and thoughts. This could be a simple notebook or smartphone.
- They pick one tool and stick with it.
Don’t over complicate it. Pick one thing as your capture device and stick with it. Trying to use multiple things will keep you from getting into a rhythm.
- They tell people NO.
Don’t say yes to everyone. This will monopolize your time. Michael Hyatt says that if you don’t have a plan of your own life, you will become part of someone else’s plan.
- They use a trash can
Sounds simple, right? Throw stuff away if you don’t need it.
- They simplify
It is so easy in today’s world to complicate your life with all of the options. Do not do that. Keep things simple.
- They put it away now, not later
Take the time now to put whatever you were just using away. This keeps the little things from adding up.
- Their to-do list syncs with their phone
Make sure you have your to-do list with you at all times. This will allow you to knock things out whenever you have a free moment.
- They take control of their calendar
Schedule things that are important to you first before allowing other people to schedule meetings with you. This will make sure you get what is important to you done first.
- They take control of their priorities
Don’t let someone else control your priorities. Put the things that are most important to you at the top of the list.
- They keep a pen and paper next to their bed
Sometimes you will have you best ideas first thing in the morning or right before you go to bed. Who knows…you might wake up in the middle of the night with a great idea. This will allow you to capture that.
- They organize their desk
Keep your desk tidy and avoid the clutter.
- They use context for their to do lists
Context for your lists are important. Context would be @home, @computer, @work, @errands, etc. You can’t do something at work when you are at home. This helps you do the items you can where you are at that time.
- They use Ziploc bags (a lot of them!)
This will allow you to compartmentalize like items and keep them in one area.
- They use clear storage containers (a lot of these, too)
Much like the Ziploc bags, these will allow you to keep larger items in one area and see what is in there.
- They go shopping with a list
Never go to the store without a list. You will always come back with stuff that you do not really need.
- They are on time to meetings
Always be on time to meetings. This is probably one of the top things organized people do.
- They follow through
Very simply, do what you say you are going to do. Make sure you can be counted on.
- They batch like tasks together
If you have emails to send, spend a continuous amount of time replying and sending emails instead of bouncing in and out of your inbox. This holds true with running errands and a lot of things as well.
- They keep flat surfaces clean
This doesn’t just mean your desk. It means all counter tops and tables. This helps reduce the clutter.
- They never leave a room empty handed
If you are heading out of the room and you see something that needs to go to the next room, take it with you then. It will save you a trip.
- They file things and don’t pile them
If you need to keep paper for reference at a later time, file it away in the proper location.
- They use checklists
These can be very helpful things like getting ready to travel. Utilize a checklist to help you prepare so you aren’t re-inventing the wheel each time.
- They use templates
These can be great when responding to a specific type of email that you get all of the time. This will reduce the amount of time that it takes you to respond to these.
- They create a plan to stay organized
Being organized doesn’t happen by itself. It takes work. Create a plan and make it happen.
- They keep their brain empty
David Allen talks about mind like water and this is exactly what that is. If you have the same thought more than once, you need to capture it and process it later.
- They set up filters
Create these in your inbox to file things automatically that don’t really need to see in your inbox. You can review these items at a later date that is scheduled.
- They schedule time to think
People really undervalue taking time to think. To be alone with your thoughts is a very powerful thing.
- They schedule time to work in blocks
Working in short fragmented time slots doesn’t allow you to get real work done. Schedule large uninterrupted blocks of at least four hours to work on your projects.
- They are OK with good enough
This doesn’t mean they don’t produce quality work. It means that don’t get held up by everything needing to be perfect.
- They look for tools that can make them better
Always keep your eye out for things that can help you out. Remember though, don’t make a change just for the sake of it.
- They look for simple solutions
The solutions you look to put in place to solve a particular problem do not need to be complicated.
- They are always maintaining
Maintenance on all levels. It is so much easier to maintain as you go instead of letting things go and then trying to catch up. It can be anything from your health to your inbox.
- They plan for the future
Have a plan for whatever you are doing. Failing to plan is planning to fail.
- They beat the feeling of overwhelm
Knowing what you have to do and where you are going both help tremendously with this.
- They do a brain dump
During the weekly review, make sure you empty your head with a brain dump. It will help you feel really clear.
- They keep the family calendar up to date
It’s not just about the commitments at work. You have to make sure you have a hold on commitments at home as well.
- The create a menu plan for the day
What’s for dinner? You should know this before it’s dinner time. Put the menu for the week together over the weekend to prevent this.
- They assign small tasks to their children
Depending on the age of your kids, there are some tasks around the house that they can help out with to free up some of your time.
- They create a donation routine
Set up a day each month to go through and find things you are going to donate.
- They get enough sleep
Get to bed on time and do not try to burn the candle at both ends. This will bite you in the end.
- They take breaks
Schedule times throughout the day to re-energize yourself. You can’t do your best work when you are running on empty.
- They set boundaries
Do not let people invade your space or your calendar if it is not wanted. It is OK to say NO.
- They stay away from the miscellaneous tag
When organizing things physically or digitally, use specific tags. Try to stay away from “catch all” tags.
- They separate emotions from possessions
Try not to get emotionally attached to stuff. This will help you get rid of things you don’t really need.
- They can anticipate problems that might come up
Because they have everything accounted for on their to do list, it allows them to have a better view what obstacles might be lying ahead.
- They use a shoe rack
Seems like a weird one, but it’s true.
- They make their bed
Make your bed right when you get out of it. As long as you don’t have one of those beds with 100 pillows on it, it shouldn’t take too long.
- They create email folders
This helps keep the things you need to keep for reference in your email organized and allows you to find them quickly.
- They use cash when they shop
You will spend less when buying with cash. This will keep the stuff that you don’t really need out of your space.
- They don’t watch mindless hours of TV
Do you know how organized you could be if you weren’t watching that re-run of SportsCenter or Beverly Hills Housewives for the fifth time
- They use bookmarks on the web
This will save you a lot of time when visiting the sites you go to on a daily basis as well as keeping track of sites when you are researching a project.
- They use a scanner
Get rid of paper and go digital. You will thank me later.
- They use Evernote
Use the scanner that we talked about in the previous step to scan thing directly in to Evernote (i.e. Your digital brain).
- They hang up their keys
Have you ever been in a hurry to leave and can’t find your keys? Hang them up in the same place every time and that will not be a problem.
- They read and get rid of their newspapers
Just like your mail, read this stuff when you get it. If you don’t read it within a day, pitch it.
- They use vision boards
Vision boards help you know where you are going and what you are doing all of this for.
- They exercise regularly
This is the most import thing of all. John Saddington even talks about this in a recent interview I did with him. Your health should be your number one priority.
- They end meetings on time
You should have an agenda and actually stick to it. By the way, if someone schedules a meeting with you and cannot give you an agenda, do not go to the meeting.
- They actually do things
Oh yeah, they actually execute. They actually get stuff done. I would say this is number two behind taking care of your health.
- They use an RSS reader
This allows you to keep up with a lot of different sites in a shorter amount of time. I use Feedly.
- They hire people for things they are not good at
If you are not good at it or do not enjoy doing it, delegate it.
- They are always looking to improve
Remember that you are not staying the same. You are either getting better or getting worse. I would do the first.
- They pay their bills online
This is a huge time saver if you are not already doing this. Also, check out auto-pay if it is available.
- They store their passwords in one place
Use a password manager like LastPass or 1Password. This will save you a ton of time and energy. Plus, they can help you generate stronger and more secure passwords.
- They schedule a “meetings” day
Try to have all of your meetings on one day of the week. This will help you from being fragmented throughout the week.
- They create themes for their day
For example, if you are a content creator, you might generate content on Mondays and Tuesdays, do graphic design work on Wednesdays, and do interviews for your site on Thursdays.
- They wake up early
This can be the most productive time of your day if you plan it right. Don’t be afraid to try this out.
- They schedule a time to unplug from technology
Your brain needs a rest. Give this a try even if it just for a day. You will come back feeling rejuvenated.
Question: Which of these are you already doing? Are you there other things you are doing that aren’t listed here? Leave a comment by clicking here.