WORKPLACE / AUG. 09, 2014
version 3, draft 3

Organise the Way You Organise

Have you ever collected comic books, action figures, dishes, or something similar? Maybe you’re a collector of apps—your phone is full of the sleekest and useable apps and your friends are constantly in envy of your savvy know-how.

But do you ever feel overwhelmed? You’ve got all of these fantastic and sleek organisational tools that are spouted to be some of the best out there. Your phone is like a secretary in your pocket, but you still feel unorganised and full of loose ends. As much as you’d like to think that using multiple tools can help, it can equate more to having a secretary who keeps appointments on post-its.

Collecting apps may be all well and good, and it is fun learning how to use something new, but you shouldn’t sacrifice time and sanity in maintaining several apps on multiple devices just to keep an appointment or make it to a meeting.

Instead, slim down on devices.

Before slimming down on your apps, begin by slimming down on your devices. If you’ve got a phone for work and a phone for home, split the two very definitively. Keep work appointments strictly on your work phone, and leave personal appointments on your home phone. Splitting devices means you won’t forget anything important during the day or be bogged down by information you don’t need at the moment.

If you’ve got a phone and something like a tablet, only use one to organise yourself. Not only will it prevent you from forgetting what’s where, it means you’re carrying a lot less around in your bag or backpack.

While this may seem like common sense to those who haven’t prescribed to today’s tech craze, some people have three or four different devices on them at all times. While that may be fun and you’ve got the latest technology in the palm of your hand, chances are it won’t really help keep you more organised. Try reselling or donating used devices that you don’t want.

Cut unused apps and programs.

A general rule I use for my apps is to uninstall and remove anything that I haven’t used in one month. It can be tempting to keep apps around because they fill up space on an otherwise empty phone, but using multiple apps to keep the same information is redundant, and you’re probably going to forget what you logged where. Try keeping all information in one app—choose a tool and stick with it. Don’t risk losing information by flopping back and forth.

Likewise, don’t use apps to organise things you don’t have or don’t need. It might feel good to organise and sometimes it can make us feel like a weight has been lifted from our shoulders. However, over organising can occur when you’re trying to organise things you don’t have. For example, don’t download an app to organise your notes if you don’t actually take or keep notes. Organising unnecessary items is wasting energy and time.

Instead, try making a list of what exactly you’re looking for in an organisation app. Do you like sleek interfaces or simplistic styles? Maybe you’re the kind of person who needs an alarm to go off or a timer. Googling these keywords can help you find some of the more popular organisational apps with those features.

Keeping organised is simple—once you organise the way you organise. Remember, more isn’t necessarily better.

 

Creative Commons licensed (BY-NC-ND) flickr photo by Mike Rohde.

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