Help for Disorganized People: What to Do When You Get off Track
Last week I shared a number of tips to help you overcome your organizing roadblocks, but no matter how good your plan is you may occasionally find you have slipped back into old habits. Or perhaps something threw you off your schedule, such as illness or another emergency. However it happens, you will sometimes find yourself back into your old habits of disorganization and procrastination.
Here's what to do when you get off track:
• Don't give up — You can choose to let the interruption cause you to fall off the cliff or you can grab control and start from now climbing your way back up the mountain.
• Be honest with yourself — Determine what caused you to lose your focus. Are you overly tired; are you eating right; is something else wrong causing you to go back to your old ways of procrastination and disorganization? Or are you just being lazy?
• Start small — Tackle one small thing to get it reorganized. It's especially important to go back and reorganize the things you've already organized that have gotten off track. Don't tackle anything new until you've at least gotten back to where you were.
• Go back to your calendar — The easiest place to start is your calendar. If you've been writing things in it, even the minutia, then you should have a place to start right there in today's date. If not, start writing in your calendar again.
• Let go — Don't beat yourself up about falling off the path. The important thing is that you're willing to admit your mistakes and start again from where you are. Baby steps will get you there just as well as leaps and bounds.
• Do what works — If you've discovered a way to do something that works, stick to it. You don't need to reinvent the wheel or try to force someone else's methods upon yourself. If it works, it works; so do it! (Just be mindful that you're not letting disorganization and procrastination be what works!)
If you've gotten off track with your organization efferts, take heart! You've realized you have a problem and that fact alone will help you take the steps to correct it. You can take control again simply because you've accepted that you need to. Even if all you do is start with something small like organizing your purse, filling in your to-do calendar, or cleaning off your desk at work. The fact is, starting is half the battle.
Have you gotten off track with your organizing? Where do you need to start to put yourself back on?