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Proactive Me

My attempt at organising my life.

Ok, so I've always been a little bit of an organisation freak. Any opportunity to buy new stationary or make a colour coded timetable, I'm already there. The new year is as good an excuse as any to feed my guilty pleasure, raid Paperchase, and attempt to get my life back on track. Having the things around me organised helps me to feel as productive and motivated as possible, and lets face it, as a chronic procrastinator, I need as much help as possible. So here are some tips that I swear by and thought I would share them with you.

Treat Yourself

I am a firm believer that if you buy new pair of trainers, you're going to want to run more often. However, since I don't do any sport and don't intend to start any time soon, I just use the same thought process and apply it to being more organised. If you have a nice pretty set of stationary that you're excited to use, it's going to motivate you to organise the different elements of your life. That's why I always start my new year with a trip to Paperchase, where I have been a local customer for many years now, and buy a selection of notebooks, organisers and a fresh diary for the year. This doesn't have to cost a fortune and you can buy as little or as much as you want but I would definitely recommend buying a little pocket diary to keep in your bag. Now I know that the majority of people, including myself, mainly now use their phone calendars to keep track of their lives. However, I do always get a hard copy diary as well, seems pretty pointless I know, I'm just more comfortable knowing I still have a record of any appointments or important dates in case something happens to my phone. Everyone works and thinks differently though so once you've found a system that works for you don't change it!





  1. 2017 Pocket Calendar - Navucko @ Paperchase
  2. A4 Clear Document Wallet - Paperchase
  3. Raindrops Desk Pad - Paperchase
  4. Make-up Brush Bag - H&M
  5. Gold Fleck iPhone 6 Case - Urban Outfitters
  6. Clip Set - Primark
  7. Black Linen A4 Sketchbook - Paperchase
  8. Agenzio Cahier Medium Grey Notebooks (3 pack) - Paperchase

Get in Sync

I can't stress how important this is, SYNC YOUR CALENDARS PEOPLE! Technology is so clever nowadays you can connect to pretty much everything, and by synchronising the devices that you use most often, in my case my phone and laptop, it makes scheduling and planning out your days so much more convenient. I have only done this myself fairly recently but honestly, it is life changing, I no longer have to add the same event multiple times, and if plans change, that same alteration is then consistent across all my apps. Taking it even further, synchronising your calendars to Facebook allows you to keep track of any events you've said you're interested in attending and also, reminds you of any upcoming birthdays that you would have probably forgotten about otherwise. It requires next to no time or effort and you instantly feel more like you know what you're doing with your time.

Take Note

Always carry a pen and paper, you never know when inspiration might strike. Whether its an idea for a blog post that pops into my head or just something I need to remember to do or buy, I always find it useful to be able to write things down whenever I need to and wherever I am. Luckily, my pocket diary I previously mentioned has a little notes section at the back, so I've kind of got a two in one that takes up minimal space in my bag.


Plan Ahead

At the very least, have as much as possible of your next week planned in advance. Fill in a weekly planner with any commitments, deadlines and events that you have already committed to, then you'll be able to see what you can realistically add to that schedule or see if you've stretched yourself too thin. Personally, I like to do this for the next month so I avoid double booking myself and I can physically see the days when I'm more busy, therefore it is easier to make plans for the days I have more free time. 

Back it Up

Invest in an external hard drive so you can back up your laptop or computer. If you're anything like me, your whole life is on your laptop. Not only is the majority of my work stored on my laptop, but also my entire life's worth of photos and memories. I would be completely devastated if anything was to happen to my laptop and I'd lost all of that. Backing up your laptop is a really easy solution to that problem, the external hard drive that I picked up was the Seagate Backup Plus Slim 2TB and I would highly recommend for use with both Mac and Windows.

Buy a Water Bottle

Now this tip is less about organisation and more about being proactive in leading a healthier life. I recently bought a 'Dot' water bottle by Joseph & Joseph and I'm in love with it. It is simply a refillable plastic water bottle that counts how many times you've refilled the bottle that day, tracking your daily hydration. For someone that struggles to drink as much water as I should throughout the day, this has helped me so much. I know that I should be drinking between 3 and 4 bottles of water a day and because the the lid tracks your intake, it motivates me to get to that 4th dot by the end of the day and has so far proved to be successful. I'm a firm believer that drinking enough water has a direct affect on the rest of your day. You feel less tired, prevents headaches, improves your skin and can even aid in weight loss, so its definitely a habit that I want to maintain.

Meal Plan

I do my food shopping online, so to make sure I remember to buy everything I need for the next two weeks, I plan my meals in advance. As I cook for just me, it's very hard to buy ingredients for just  one portion, so I tend to cook enough for about 4 people and freeze the extra portions for later on in the week. Not only is this more cost effective, but it also cuts down the amount of time spent in the kitchen. Meal planning has many advantages, it minimises food waste, cuts out time wasted thinking about what to have for dinner and finally, cuts the cost of your shop as you're not tempted to buy food you might not eat.

Give it a Home

Everything you own should ideally have a dedicated place within your home. Whether that's some spare leads that have been lying around or your collection of sunglasses, if your items have a specific place they belong, then your home environment will feel more organised and productive. Now that doesn't mean the items have to be hidden away, for example, my scarves are all hung on a multi rack clothes hanger that is on display on the side of my drawers. This means that every time I want to wear a scarf I can easily find the one I want and it's just as easy to put it away when I'm done, which means my room doesn't get into too much of a mess.

File it Away

Important documents are just that, important. So they need to be stored together somewhere that is easy to access and sorted in a way so you can find exactly what you need. I personally think expanding files are perfect for exactly this. They have different sections for things like banking, health, travel, education, whatever you may need. They're available in all different sizes and they're pretty inexpensive. I always file my documents in chronological order so I don't have to rifle through the entire section of paperwork.

Catalogue your Clothes

This is probably my favourite tip of the lot, figure out a system by which to organise all of the clothes hung up in your wardrobe. Personally, I sort my clothes by colour and then into their own categories. This makes picking an outfit each morning SO much easier as I know exactly where to find every item I own. Organising by colour is pretty self explanatory, as you can see my wardrobe goes from yellow, all the way through to black and white and then more patterned pieces on the end. However, the different categories are a bit more tricky to organise. What I've found works best for me is from left to right, I have sections for shirts, jumpers, short dresses, long dresses, playsuits, jumpsuits, jackets and then coats. Now this system might not work for everyone, but I would highly recommend figuring out your own system that makes sifting through your own wardrobe much more simple. Another useful tip to consider when organising a wardrobe is that hangers really matter. Thin felt hangers are the way forward! Not only do they save an insane amount of space and let you fit way more into your wardrobe, the felt material stops your pieces falling off and disappearing to the back of your wardrobe.


Prioritise

As much as I love to make a 'to do' list, prioritising is essential. If you're going to have an endless list of things that need to get done, choose three that are the most important to get done that day in order to be more realistic in what you expect from yourself. That way it allows you to focus on a maximum of three things at a time, rather than getting panicked over all of the other things on your mind. It also means you don't feel as disappointed if you don't quite manage to tick absolutely everything off on the list.

Overestimate

If you're setting yourself a task, be sure to allow more than enough time to complete it. Personally, I am awful at time management, and a task that should take an hour will take me nearer to two. By overestimating the time need, you feel less pressure and more often than not will produce better work. Also, it allows you a bit of freedom if something doesn't quite go to plan as you still have plenty of time left to fix things.

Thanks for reading, I hope you found a few of these tips useful, I'll see you in Paperchase.

Cxx


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