Time management Monday: Habits of highly organized people

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Desk Organization

Last month on our three-week trip to the US we stayed with my in-laws. My husband’s mother is the most organized person I’ve ever met. Her house is always immaculate. She is busy, and gets a lot done. She has to: she has a lot on her plate.

She is a full-time carer for her in-laws, who are in their 90’s and live in her house. She also cares for her parents, in their 90’s and a 2 mile drive down the road. She takes all four folks to their multiple doctor’s appointments (several every week), cleans, cooks all their meals, checks in on them several times per day, etc.  She also gardens, takes care of her own household (with the help of her dear husband), family, church events, etc. She has a lot of energy, and does more in a day than some people do in a week.

She also has a lot of systems in place that keep her organized. While we stayed there I got to see these in action. Here are some of her methods:

She keeps up on weekly tasks by doing things on the same day every week: mowing on Tuesday, wash sheets on Friday, etc.

She plans meals and shops accordingly so she always has the ingredients she needs to make healthy meals. She has to, because she has a lot of people to feed and a lot of meals to cook every week. She can’t afford to just wing it.

She cleans as she goes, and never leaves a mess to clean up later.

She doesn’t procrastinate, and she doesn’t leave jobs half done. She takes care of things right away when she notices they need done, or she plans a time to do it if she can’t accomplish it right then. She and her husband also keep up on the maintenance of their house and cars. This keeps small things from turning into big things.

She buys the tools she needs. Whether it’s for yard work, storage, the kitchen, cleaning supplies, etc. if there is a tool she needs, she buys it. Having said that, she only buys the tools she actually needs and uses on a regular basis. She doesn’t have a lot of kitchen gadgets or anything extraneous.

She doesn’t have clutter, so her house is easier to clean. Here are some methods she uses to keep down the clutter:

She replaces things that are worn out. Notice I said replaces. She doesn’t keep the old one. This is similar to the “one in, one out” rule.

If she hasn’t used something in a year, she gets rid of it.

She buys a small number of high-quality items instead of lots of low-quality items. She doesn’t go to WalMart and spend 50 bucks on plastic stuff. Everything she owns is good quality, and she doesn’t have tons of it.

I’m sure she has a lot more methods that I didn’t see. She manages to get an enormous amount of stuff done.

Do you know someone who is highly organized, or are you yourself very organized? What other habits have you noticed of highly organized people?

3 thoughts on “Time management Monday: Habits of highly organized people

  1. We recently moved, and I now have larger and differently configured kitchen and bathroom layouts. I bought plastic boxes and tubs from the dollar store, to work out space needs. Some work, and some don’t. When these fail, they will be replaced with higher quality pieces.

  2. If that picture is anything to go by she is a believer in “a place for everything and everything in its place”. She clearly knows the benefits of putting things back where they belong when she’s done using them. This alone is a great clutter-buster and time-saver! Thanks for sharing tips from a pro.

    • The photo above isn’t of her house, but similar. She does have a place for everything, and when something is finished being used it goes right back to its place.

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