I am becoming increasingly convinced that being successful in life (not to mention happy) is largely dependent on good organization skills. This unoriginal light bulb moment happened for me last week when I hung up a key hook by the door. It was simple move, but one of great significance for me.
Do you know how much time I have spent searching for my keys? I am glad no one has been tallying the minutes because to know exactly how much time I have wasted would be too depressing. It happened multiple times a day, almost every single day. Not too long ago I even left my keys in the front door overnight.
But the funny thing is that I didn’t realize how much time I was wasting until I hung up the key hook. Sure, it was inconvenient to search for keys every time we were heading out, but it didn’t seem like that big of a deal. After I hung up the key hook, I noticed a big change. It was so much easier to get out the door because I didn’t have to plan on 10 or 15 minutes of hide and seek before we could leave. This got me thinking about other areas in my life that could use a bit more organization.
In order to identify where else in my life I might need some refreshing, some organization, some better time management, I carried around a notebook for a few days. I wrote everything down – what time I got up, what I ate, where I went, everything I did and how long it took to do it. The results were surprising to say the least!
I eat more than I think I do. I often skip meals (I know, I know) so I think that because I didn’t have breakfast or lunch it is certainly within my bounds to eat a cupcake (or four), and maybe a handful of crackers and nuts, and I’m not one to turn down a bit of cheese here and there (and everywhere). My notebook showed me that I may in fact be eating a bit more on the side than I would if I just ate meals like I should.
I found a lot of ways I could be saving time – really, I wasn’t on Pinterest for just a second or two? I identified things that a bit of organization and simplification could make run smoother, like the pantry for mealtimes and my closet when I get ready in the morning. I even found a few things I could pat myself on the back for, which is always nice you know. As it turns out, I spend a good amount of time studying scriptures and playing with my kids.
So, if 90% of success is being organized and managing time well, I think the other 10% is paying attention. After a few days of paying close attention to my habits and routines, I am on my way to making small changes and big improvements. It is as simple as a notebook, a pen, and a commitment to pay attention.
Try carrying around a notebook for a couple days and see what you can learn about yourself. It’s not one more thing to do, I promise; it’s a shortcut.