9 Habits of a Highly Organized Person

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1. Be Early. Not on Time. Early

The more time you give yourself to arrive where you need to be, the less stressed you will be. It’s one of the easiest ways to make yourself a more organized person. Giving yourself more time leads to clearer thinking, time to finish a few last minute things you didn’t plan for, or that stupid red light that gets you every time! Set your alarm for 10-15 minutes earlier than you need to. Give yourself some wiggle room.

9 Habits of an Highly Organized Person. Learn to be productive and help others who might not be as organized as you.

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2. Write That Crap Down!

If you are like me, when you were younger, you didn’t need to make lists. Your daily schedule was in your brain, you could add to it, cancel events, add more things to the grocery list, and manage to remember EVERY DAMN THING! Now you walk into a room and you can’t remember why you are in there. Most likely, a highly organized person developed this habit early on. They really like making lists, or they learned that lists are essential (especially when you get older!).

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To-do lists are common. Jot a note down here, type it into your phone there. Super duper organized people write it all down. Even the small details. It’s not a coincidence that you remember it better when you write it down. You don’t even have to go back to the note (or maybe you do), but your brain remembers it better if you actually take the time to handwrite it. It goes into your memory bank in a different way.

3. Keep Track of the Family/Co-Workers

When my kids were little it was easy to keep track of their schedules. They didn’t have one!! Kidding. Now that they are older and starting to participate in sports and extra-curricular activities, I have more to keep track of. Then, there is the hubby and his school and extra-curricular activities. A shared calendar will help you keep track of all that. Sometimes there isn’t enough time to communicate with each other in the evening or the beginning of the day. Having one place that you can all add your events to and check for availability is a huge step toward organizing your schedule!

4. One Thing at a Time

Multi-tasking has its place. But really, taking the time to do one thing and to do it well will make you more organized and productive. Minimizing the feeling of being overwhelmed or things getting chaotic will allow you to organize the task you are currently working on and to do it to the best of your ability. If something else comes up, add it to your to-do list and then take care of it next.

5. Practice Pomodoro

If you haven’t checked out The Pomodoro Technique, you should. It’s a great way to manage your time, be productive, and have an organized day. The point of the whole technique is to focus for a set amount of time and then take a break. That right there is the main point.

Take a break.

You might feel like you are procrastinating because you are taking a potty break (even when you don’t really have to go) or you are wandering around the kitchen again doing little tasks. It looks like procrastination, but it’s your brain’s way of telling you it needs a break. Scheduling these brain breaks into your day will make you more organized and productive.

6. Set a Deadline

Having a deadline is similar to prioritizing your to-do list. Sure, you have everything on there and you are working through the list from top to bottom, but is that the best use of your time? What items on that list can wait until next week? And what things should be done by the end of today? Give your to-do items a time frame. Then adjust your list accordingly.

7. Minimize What You Have

Highly organized people clean through the clutter. And they work hard not to add more. They understand that having more stuff just means that you have more things to deal with. Don’t buy it unless you need it. Clean out the clothes you haven’t worn in a year before you buy more. Purge the kitchen cupboards bi-annually. Starting to develop habits of organized people will make you an organized person too!

Start a donation pile.

We have a set spot in a closet for clothes that don’t fit the kids any longer and items we want to donate. When it gets full, I take it to the second-hand store. I also have a spot in the pantry for unwanted gifts. If someone gives me a gift that is something I just won’t use or it’s just not “me”, I add it to the pile. When the kids need a quick gift for a teacher or we need a hostess gift, I look in the pile before I buy something.

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8. A Place for Everything, Everything in its Place

If you are a highly organized person, then you have a set place for everything that is in your home or office space. If an item doesn’t already have a “home” you will quickly make one or find one for it. Organized people are religious about this and not having something in its place will most likely drive them nuts. Bins, drawers, and other organizing tools will help to make this process more fluid.

Note: Organizing your files and legal documents is just as important as organizing your closets and cupboards. Check out this printable to help you get your papers in order:

9. Ask for Help

Organized people know that they can’t accomplish everything on their own. They also know which parts of their process, routine, or to-do list they should ask for help with. Know what and when to delegate to someone else. This frees you up to do more things on your to-do list and saves you from chasing after the little things that someone else can do. It’s probably the hardest thing on this list!

You aren't expected to do everything on your own. Ask for help now and then.Click To Tweet

I am by no means the most organized person, but I work at it regularly and do my best to adopt the habits of organized people. My big goal is to also model being organized and help my children understand this process so they can grow up to be organized individuals as well. It’s a skill that can and should be taught. Even if you have never had someone model it for you, it’s not too late to start working towards being more organized.

There are a lot of people who strive to be organized and they will struggle with that because it’s just not in their nature. If you are good at being an organized person and can organize others, you can help those people who don’t come by organizing naturally. Becoming a virtual assistant is a great way to create a side-hustle and help others at the same time.

What are your favorite tips and tricks for being organized? Do you feel like your day is chaos or do you have it under control for the most part?

Related Posts:

Habits of Productive People

How to Organize Your Task Cards

What Does a Pinterest Virtual Assistant Do?


9 habits of highly organized people do. Learn to be an organized person and more productive. How many habits of organized people do you already do?

8 Comments

  1. Rica@Yoga Mat Monkey on December 28, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Number one is my goal! I was just thinking about this today because I’m a serial procrastinator who creates undue stress for myself by working in frenzied mode to meet deadlines. If I plan better, I could avoid that process and leave more room for error. Thanks for your great tips! I really enjoyed this post– glad I didn’t opt to read it “later.”

    • Rhoda Toynbee on December 29, 2015 at 9:17 am

      Thank you Rica! I’m glad you didn’t wait until “later” to read it as well. Being early definitely changes your stress level. It’s amazing what a few minutes can do for you 🙂

  2. Shelly Schmidt on December 31, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    I am moving my crafting room- and hate to get rid of ‘things and stuff’ I have not used- cause I bought them because I liked them so much! It is hard to let go! Great list- and I will be back and re-read this!

    • Rhoda Toynbee on January 1, 2016 at 9:59 am

      I’m the same way. I cleaned through my craft room before Christmas. So many things that I loved when I bought them, but I won’t end up using. I gifted a couple of packs to my nieces. They will love using them for craft time 🙂

  3. Kelly Santi on January 2, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    Oh Rhoda, what a great list — very effective to read (though I confess I’m not familiar with the Pomodoro – will be googling that!) I am a great list writer and was happy to see I actually do most of these on here, including minimizing. I just gave up my entire (HUGE!) craftroom to create a bedroom for my homebound college daughter and went to a 3 x 4 FOOT desk – holy canoli, if that isn’t minimizing, I won’t ever know what is, LOL. But it works – what I didn’t use, had to go and a lot of happy crafters got everything at a steal – one mans’ trash ….
    Thanks for your great advice, here!

    • Rhoda Toynbee on January 3, 2016 at 9:24 am

      Kim, Thanks for visiting my site! Pomodoro is where you work on a task for a set amount of time (usually 25 minutes) without switching tasks or distracting yourself with Facebook. Then take a 5 minute break. Get up, walk around, or play on social media. Then another 25/5 block.
      I just went through my supplies and cleaned out things I wasn’t ever going to use as well. My nieces have a ton of new things for their crafting activities!

  4. Jacobo Zafrani on May 17, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    Dear Mrs. Rhoda, your tips are assertive.

    For the ones who read these lines, I can tell you that you will become more efficient.

    The list you make is to be completed “one thing at a time”, even with distractions, you read the list and keep going. It is the way to walk one step at a time…all the journey.

    The pomodoro Technique is known to be effective, but the risk of taking more time in breaks has the risk of not following up. When this happends, let me suggest to ask yourself ” Why do I have to complete the next task?” this remind you why you must do the next one on the list. Focus.

    Setting deadlines is very important, so that you advance and complete the most important tasks first. Even if you don´t do them all, you are using your mind and energy for the most important ones now. Try to delegarte some with less priority, so that you can put a checkmark on more and still concentrate on the main ones.

    Minimize what you have is a good one to simplify your life and clear your mind. A good trick here is to measure all, but do in small chunks. If you hace 4 boxes full of papers, books, office suplies, files,… then put them in order 1, 2, 3, and 4. then start with box 1 by selecting your 1st group (lets say 10 inches tall in papers) process them in 45 mins to 1 hour. Toss what you don´t need, refer some to others, Pass the information or read it and file what you need to keep. Do this 3 times a week. Mark it in your calendar. You will be simplifying your life and clearing your mind. Just try it, If feels so good!

    I use an App called “Trello” that is free online. You make lists and then prioritize the tasks . It uses the “Kanban method”, that is, the typical “Todo – Doing – Done” and you pass the tasks when completing each. I use it for the personal todo list, but also do follow up in sales. You can do the grocery list, or anything you wish.

    Use the celular phone to be more efficient. Google search directions or phone numbers, dial them asking for information to receive in your email, save files in the cloud (Google Drive, Dropbox,…), Resend pictures, letters, excel files… with your email or whatsapp or others. Say “Set a reminder” in google. Add appointments or events in your calendar. If you use any or all of these, you become a more efficient person. But dont forget to recharge your phone, jaja.

    I hope that the information shared to be usefull for all.

    Have a great day!

  5. Khalil Ur Rehman on July 26, 2018 at 12:38 am

    Mrs. Rhoda , your tips of becoming an organized person are quite helpful and pragmatic. Most of the issues highlighted are being faced by me these days.
    Hopefully, after going through these tips I will getting over them easily.
    Thanks for your untiring efforts.
    Kindly keep on writing this much helpful stuff

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