Today I wanted to share with you how I keep my life from going out of control in the organization department. Two and a half years ago I had a serious cleaning problem. I was hardly able to get out of bed without consciously avoiding the mess everywhere. There were receipts all over the counter and floor and I kept tripping over my clothes.
It wasn’t just cleaning either. I couldn’t keep anything organized or straight. I kept forgetting about bills and due dates. I was also forgetting about holidays and family events.
My issues were so daunting they seemed for the longest time like they were here to stay. Here’s a list of things I did to fix the problem.
1. I created a shred box, bought a scanner to scan receipts, and put the rest either in the trash or in a box.
Junk is junk and receipts are no exception. However, some of them were important. I made a makeshift shred box, bought a scanner to scan receipts into my computer, and bought three boxes from Gander Mountain to store all the extra paperwork.
2. I got a bullet journal.
I have three places where I keep everything: my phone, my bullet journal, and my wall calendar.
These three things keep everything backed up and tidy. Every morning and evening I sync the lists on my phone with the bullet journal and the calendar. This way everything is always organized in my head and I know what I’m doing that day.
3. I twist tied cables.
I work an I.T. job by day, and one of the things we do is tidy our cables so they don’t get out of order. I bought a large number of zip ties and twist ties and put everything in a drawer.
4. I changed the lights to get better sleep.
Sleep has always been a challenge for me, partially due to the fact that I’m always around screens. At night time this was a problem. I bought a large number of led lights and changed the daytime ones to white and night time to red. I also bought blackout curtains and filtering glasses to have more control over when the light hit my eyes.
5. I bought containers for all the old junk.
6. I automated.
I bought two Google Homes, a Roomba, and a Canary Camera security system.
7. How it all works together.
So here is an ideal day for me. Google home wakes me up and I immediately get ready for work. If I have time I check my lists and prioritize. I use the white lights in the apartment and my phone to schedule things during the day. When I get off work at night I come home and switch to red lights and turn off the computers. Again, this is an ideal day, and I stick to this process enough to be effective. Both Google Homes are useful for setting timers, alarms, checking weather, and just plain passing the time. At night I sync my bullet journal, calendar, and phone and I stop using my phone as much and instead switch to paper for to do lists. If all goes according to plan I go to bed on time while checking off my to-do lists enough to be satisfied. New receipts are scanned into my phone and discarded or put in a box to the side. All in all this system has been a success and it has improved my sleep and mood.
I’m posting this because I’ve met a lot of people who have the same issues I did. I know from experience it can be a full-time job keeping the house straight and remembering when your appointments are. I hope this helps if you’re one of these individuals.