Organizing My Life: What Has & Has Not Worked For Me

Two things I’ve made no secret of-

1. I love to organize/be organized/have things to help me get better organized.
2. My life as of late has been a major mess and I’m trying to get it back on track.

I find it slightly ironic that as someone who’s borderline obsessed with organization, my life has become chaotic. But I’ve been working hard to get myself back on track and each day, it’s getting easier and less chaotic. I’ve restarted some old (good) habits that I had when I was in high school and the earlier days of college in hopes of kicking out newer (bad) habits I’ve developed over the past six months to a year (maybe even more).

Also, at the start of 2021 I wanted to try new ways to stay organized and help keep myself on track. Some of those things have worked, some haven’t. So I thought since we’re halfway through the year already, it would be fun to share what has and has not worked for me and my life in terms of organization

  1. My Con*Quests Journal Planner

    Planners make my life easier. They always have and I’m betting always will. This planner is no exception! Though there was a brief period of time this year (during my mental breakdown) when it was barely used, knowing I had it to go back to really helped me once I was past that point. And now that I’m feeling better, it has really helped me get my life back on track. I have it set up in a way that makes it easy for me to know what I have to look forward to each day. Plus, it’s Harry Potter themed, so everyday I have a bit of magic in my day!

2. Blogging Notebook

I started this notebook back in February of 2020 and it has done wonders for keeping my blogging organized! Though there was point this year when it wasn’t used (nervous breakdowns really derail everything), I’ve gone right back to using it and it has been a huge help. Right now I have all my blog posts for the month of June planned and have started thinking about July’s posts as well. So I am very glad that I have this notebook to use and keep me organized!

3. Book Lists Notebook

Admit it- we all have a stash of notebooks that we’ve deemed “too nice to use for any reason”. Well, this is one of the notebooks I had in this pile for awhile and finally decided it needed to be used. So I gave it a use where I could keep it for years, and that’s keep tracking of my book lists. There is a whole post on this (linked under the photo), but I’ve found this really helpful for keeping track of my current reads, want to reads, want to review, etc. Though word of warning- Update it as much as you can because if you let it go for too long, it’s overwhelming!

4. Master Notebook

Does anyone have a bunch of notebooks that have random things written down in them? Yeah, that’s me… and it’s kind of annoying because if I can’t remember where I wrote something down, then I have to spend time finding the notebook it’s in… and overall, it’s just a frustrating and time consuming process! So I decided to have one notebook a.k.a. The Master Notebook, to put all the things I need/want to remember in it. My label maker is starting to die, which is why the label is so bad… but I will definitely be fixing it/making it look more interesting soon. Let me know if you would like a blog post about how I organize this notebook!

5. Debt Notebook

As someone with two degrees, the amount of student loans I own is a very scary and overwhelming number. I also have a few other debts that I’ve slowly been working on paying off. I’ve found having a specific notebook where I can keep track of how much has been paid off really helps me feel better about knowing how much the amount is going down and that I am working on building up my credit (because admittedly my credit is terrible because of my student loans), but I know it’s something I need to improve, so I’m trying anyway I can to improve it! And this notebook, though small and simple, really seems to help.

So with everything that has helped me stay organized, there have been things that haven’t helped me. So here are the three things that haven’t helped me stay organized!

  1. Mood Tracker

    As someone who makes no secret of their mental health struggles, I’ve been working really hard this year to understand why I’m feeling a certain way, what triggers my mood changes, etc. So I picked out my color code for my moods and started using it. But after a week or two, I realized it wasn’t really helping me. If anything, it as frustrating me more because having to remember why I was angry at 2pm just make me angry all over again. Also, there are times when I have waves of depression or anxiety and I can’t figure out why it’s happening. So writing I don’t know felt like a cope out and didn’t feel helpful either.

2. Budget Planner (Couldn’t even find it to photograph it)

When I saw how well my debt notebook was working for me and after watching some budget planner videos on YouTube, I thought adding a budget planner to my organizational habits would be great. After all, I’m working on downsizing my debts and saving for my future. But the budget planner turned out to be very tedious and time consuming in a way that detracted me from using it. I kept up with it for maybe about a week, but after that I found myself not wanting to take the time to input all the information. Plus it meant keeping receipts, which caused clutter (and as we all know I’m not a fan of clutter). So overall, the budget planner just didn’t work for me one bit.

3. Daily Word Tracker/Project Tracker Notebook

One of my goals for the last two years has been to write 500 words everyday. Though this goal has been a shaky one for me, it’s something I will never stop trying to achieve! So this year, I wanted to not only keep track of my daily word count, but what words go to what writing projects (novel, blog, etc). I did this for maybe about a week at the start of January 2021… and that was it. Honestly, this was tedious. It took so much time to set up each page (even when I did them in bulk) and trying to remember what words were for what project and listing everything I did that day… it was just a lot. So this didn’t work for me, it just added more stress and frustration to my day. I think maybe if I bought a preset notebook where everything was already written in that it would have worked for me, so maybe I’ll try one of those in 2022. We’ll see!

Organization isn’t a one-size-fits-all thing. So the things that work for me might not work for you just like the things that didn’t work for me might work for you. It’s interesting to me how people organize their lives. So my questions for you are- How do you keep your life organized? What things have and have not worked for you? I would love to know! Have a great week everyone!

12 comments

    • Doing things digitally gives me anxiety because there’s always the risk of some of kind glitch or a software update that messes things up! As long as your paper doesn’t get wet or the dog doesn’t chew on it, you’re fine! Paper just feels easier overall for me, and I’m glad to know in a digital age I’m not alone in that thought ☺️

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