The Art of Organizational Skills and Time Management
Experience in tax preparation and college level lesson planning, coupled with taking coursework and having worked at a storage facility have made me a near expert on organizational skills, time management and successful planning. Trust me, you are only held back by the excuses you make instead of working to get the thing done.
Most people have one job they go to outside the home and when they come home from their work, they are not interested in doing more work at home. But simple organizational skills can make ones life so much easier, that to not do those things, you are actually creating more work for yourself in the long run.
For instance, handling paperwork and the mail should only take one handling if done correctly. If you get your bills online and pay them online, then handle the email immediately when it comes in and pay the bill then. The same thing goes for snail mail billing. Write the check and ail it or date it with the date to mail, if awaiting your paycheck. Open email bills only when you are ready to pay them. Handle it once. Keep folders for all tax receipts, and keep track of mileage, donations, medical and other documents so when the time comes for taxes, you are not scrambling for your paperwork. Use a program like Quicken to balance all your expenses and also to locate those expenses tax deductible at the end of the year. Label boxes with expiration dates, and keep a bin handy for things you are willing to release to places like Goodwill. Purchase large quantities of toilet paper, paper towels and other items so you are not constantly going to the store and paying top dollar for these items in small quantities.
Find a spot in the garage and prepare a disaster kit in case of earthquake, flood or other instances when you are in need of such items. Include candles, batteries and toilet paper, water, and canned items. Rotate them every six months.
Organizational skills are not rocket science. Do not take them to mean you must be anal retentive, just carefully place items so you can find them when necessary, saving time and headache.
Everyone says they do not have the "time" to do things that they need to do. I am the master of time, as I work 3-4 part time jobs and this means not only being organized, but also aware of time stealing activities.
One big time grabber is the Internet. If you are not careful, many hours will pass you by and you will have not accomplished a darn thing. Ticking off time in playing online games is a luxury you do not have if you are trying to manage the small amount of time you have.No TV, no video games, no texting, and no whining, these are big attention grabbers. Write in your calendar what needs to be accomplished and set about doing the quickest thing first. Then move from that to several projects all in differing time periods. For instance, I will grade 1/3 of the papers I need to, followed by writing my own paper, watching a movie for a class, answering email, grading more papers, reading for a class, then taking a short nap. I get more done when I allow myself a break and that includes a rest.
The key to good time management is forgiveness and attitude. If you buy into being "stressed out" nothing will be accomplished or at the very least, what is accomplished will be done anxiously and without full attention or enjoyment!
We are the hardest on ourselves and at times need baby steps, and the biggest thing we need is self forgiveness for all our bad habits.
There is an art to being able to balance ones life and take care of all that needs to be done. The key is to enjoy what it is you are doing and to find an "end in sight" whether it is a vacation, a special weekend or a job that only lasts for a specific "season" of the year. I work "tax season" at one job and teach both online and in the classroom at the same time. Some terms I work 4 jobs to keep my head above water. Knowing that the job will end at a certain time is a blessing, and other times it is a curse. Not knowing if you will be rehired for work is always troublesome, but keeping oneself aligned with all the duties of each job is an art form. And it can be done by anyone who is willing to work hard and is especially interesting to those of us who have suffered financial deprivation and wish never to fall into that horrible state ever again!
I have worked in the storage business and anyone who has not seen the things people store and pay to store are clueless as to the enormity of the money wasted keeping unnecessary things.
Every 6 months people need to reassess their situation and rid themselves of things that weigh them and their lives down. To store unnecessary papers, boxes, mementos, and other manner of junk limits your ability to find room for new things to come into your life. There is a heaviness about clutter, particularly things that you have no need of and/or will never use again.
There is an entire industry built on the idea that people somehow need to "keep everything" and when room runs out at home, a storage unit is rented to harbor such things. The only trouble with having one, besides the huge amount of money wasted on the monthly rent is that if you have not seen or used it within a certain amount of time, you really do not need it. We are all creatures of material wants, but we hold onto things that no longer serve us and most of it is material in nature.
Clean it out! Donate it, sell it, give it away. Free yourself from the burden of carrying it around and holding onto it for a use you'll never find for it. Release! Part of our stress comes from holding on. We need to let go of outdated things, emotions, worries and stresses and live in the present!