Time; It’s one thing we never seem to have enough of, especially whilst we juggle the priorities of family, work, housework, relationships and self care. Often, it’s difficult to know the best way to make use of the time we do have, flitting between racing through our to-do list at a hundred miles an hour or slowing down to just breathe – still worrying about the million and one things we should be doing. What’s for the best? Embracing the chaos or spend all of our time getting things in order?
In reality most us love the idea of being effortlessly organised, neat and tidy, but in the real world, spinning multiple plates and living with our children who don’t have the same worries, life can get a little chaotic. It’s often easier not to put the toys away – they’ll only be taken out again tomorrow anyway. The ironing pile, that would give Everest a run for its money, our desk with the pile of work or personal admin that needs to be dealt with. There’s always tomorrow, right?
It’s far quicker to just leave your jumper on the back of a chair than to go through the effort of hanging it in the wardrobe or putting it in the wash basket. All time saving measures, freeing up more time to do the important things. You’re saving time this way – or are you?
The time we save by not dealing with issues that arise often leads to having to spend more time dealing with later. The ironing pile becomes ‘in-climbable’, the bedroom becomes a Bermuda Triangle for clothes never to be seen again and have you ever stepped on Lego? Ouch! Don’t forget trying to get the children out of the door for school. The desk has become a breeding ground for miscellaneous items, including your house keys, which you’ve had to spend 10 minutes trying to find. You’ve been ready to go for the past 10 minutes but now you’re late. Stressful.
Eventually, things start to pile up and we can start to feel overwhelmed and stressed by a house that is cluttered. Worst of it is we don’t know we seemingly became a mess overnight. This is where the magic of being orderly comes in. If the desk had been tidy and the keys on the hook, this whole situation would have been avoided. You’d have left on time and your home wouldn’t be upside down.
Taking a little extra time today, will save even more time tomorrow. The key is tidying as you go along – where possible and being prepared. Time hacks that involve being prepared ahead of time can easily be incorporated into your life. If you lay out yours and the children’s clothes for the following day before you go to sleep, when you wake in the morning you save time not worrying about what to wear, having to find something to wear and then ironing it. Rogue socks, hats and gloves become a thing of the past.
Keeping a box especially for admin or a space for keys becomes a huge time saver meaning you always know where to find them as you always put them in the same place. Eventually, being organised ahead of time will become a habit you don’t even need to think about.
You’ll reduce your stress levels and have more capacity for creative thinking around life and work. Life and or running a business can be chaotic enough, you don’t want to add to that otherwise you’ll find yourself unable to relax or truly enjoy family time. When things are in order life runs smoother which has an impact in all areas of your life. You may soon find work takes less time and you won’t have that nagging feeling in the back of your mind that something is hanging over you. Planning is key. Shorten to-do lists. Be clear on which three top things must be taken care of by the end of each day and see how your mood, anxiety levels and life improves.
You don’t have to be as organised as Monica from Friends – that’s taking it to a whole new level. But, a little forward planning and organisation goes a long way. Put your most commonly used items in order and commit to keeping it that way. Your future, less stressed out, self will thank you for it.
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