How I'm Getting Organized (Again)

You know what one of the most cliche new year resolutions is? Getting organized. And yet, here I am, making that my top goal for the next few weeks.

I even started working on it before Christmas. I'm typically a pretty organized person, with to-do lists, an app to keep my tasks organized and reminders set up. (Of course I operate pretty much paperless these days!)

However, having a baby and being on maternity leave can throw any semblance of a routine out the window. Focusing on the baby was my top priority, but as I returned to work, I realized I needed to gather my scatterbrain and put everything back in order.

So here we are, working on getting organized again. Even though I've had most of the tools already, I've focused on refreshing them and making them work a little bit better for me. If I'm going to have my phone around all the time and use it for more than just taking hundreds of photos of my baby girl, I might as well turn it into the personal assistant it's got the power to be.

Update app notification and view settings

Todoist has been one of my favorite apps/services for more than four years now. I use it to keep track of my blog content schedule, Times of Acadiana content schedule, and even household chores and projects. As a way to have it help me even more, I'm making it a habit to use the features even better. I've got my different projects set up and color-coordinated, and I'm making sure to add a due time to every task, so that I'll automatically get a reminder on my phone when each task is 'due'.

I've also been working to add every little task as I think of it, even if it's something like doing my daughter's laundry or dropping a package off at the UPS Store. If I don't have a physical reminder, I will forget for a few days.

I'm also utilizing Google Calendar even more, and added a specific calendar to my account for my daughter's schedule. I've optimized my notification settings and default view on my phone. Now, my phone view is set to the week, and my desktop view is set to the month. I'll add any little event or errand to my calendar in order to get that push notification reminder.

Update iPhone Today screen

Coming from an Android, I was excited to see that my iPhone has a Today screen with widget capability...and then I've barely used it in the past two years. In my technology refresh, I cleaned up my Today screen so that the widgets there are ones for my productivity apps, and ones that I'll actually use.

Now it's a helpful little overview of my schedule, reminders, to do list and notes.

Put productivity apps on first screen and move social media to second screen or a folder

This is probably one of my favorite efforts so far. Being a social media manager by day means I always have notifications on my social media apps, and they resided on the first screen of apps on my phone. However, it makes for constant distractions, especially with the little red circles in the corner.

Getting rid of them altogether is something that just won't happen. So, I sat one afternoon and rearranged my apps so that ones like my calendar, email, notes, reminders, Todoist and photo apps are on the first screen, and social media apps are on the second screen. It creates one more layer of effort to get to them. (However, I did totally hate all of it for the first few days, and I still can't find all my apps right away, ha.)

Another way to bury your social media apps a little more is to put them in a folder that you have to tap into first. Or adjust the notification settings so that you receive less frequent notifications, or turn off sounds/badge numbers so that it's not constantly in your face.

Download an app for our family schedule and grocery list

Alright, this one is still in progress. I've downloaded Cozi and imported my Google calendar, but haven't gotten to sharing it with my husband or using the grocery list feature yet. But if we do make this one work, it'll be a great way to keep everything together and we can both access it whenever.

With our extra responsibilities and new routines, streamlining and having one central place is definitely becoming more important.

It'll be a work in progress, but I'm excited to feel like I've got a handle on things again. Here's to not being late on deadlines or forgetting things I need to do. (Case in point...I hoped to get this blog post published last Monday! 🙊)

And later this week, I'll be sharing a couple of my new year resolutions that are more focused on sustainability!

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