I don’t know about you, but having a cluttered life can really harm my productivity. Whether it’s a messy space or even unorganized thoughts, it can really effect how motivated I am to be productive. Over the past few years I’ve noticed the benefits of having a streamlined life – this includes streamlining purchases like clothes, beauty, accessories and also streamlining my daily routine to the simple steps that can lead to me ticking off more on my to-do list and feeling happier in the way I work.
The Benefits of streamlining your life
Everything now has a home – from the mugs in my cupboard, to my toothbrush in the bathroom to the random papers I need to file. I know where everything lives even the small bits. This has really helped in not only knowing where everything is but also structuring my life and everything being neat and tidy. Making less and less random and impulse purchases, my home is filled with all the things I need and not just the wants. It makes your space feel lighter and overall makes me feel more comfortable and positive about my home. We don’t realized how much a tidy house can help our productivity levels especially when working from home.
Streamlining my day and knowing my different routines leaves room for me to think about more important things. I’m less hung up on what I’m having for dinner because it’s already planned. What am I wearing tomorrow? It’s already hung up ready to go in the morning! It takes out all the small mundane thoughts for everyday tasks.
Also, by having a plan all ready for your day to streamline your processes, I’ve had less intrusive thoughts relating to tasks I’ve forgotten, deadlines I’m missing. Having everything planned has really reduced my day-to-day stress and allows me to focus on the day’s tasks.
You know what needs to be done
Prioritizing things in a physical or mental list is always best. If I don’t do this, I can be a bit all over the place with the tasks I have to get done. Instead of trying to get everything done at once, focussing on those top priorities one at a time can stop me feeling overwhelmed as I know what really needs to be done.
Tips for how to streamline your day
Now I’ve persuaded you with the great benefits of living a more streamlined life, here’s how to get started!
Have a decluttered start
Clear out your clothes, sort through your paperwork – get organized! It doesn’t have to be all done at once. Maybe a room of your house every week or every month? Trying to get to a place where everything has a home and your home is as streamlined as possible.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s always one draw or one cupboard that you’ll never get to – even the best of us aren’t perfect! Everyone’s version of decluttered is different but any improvement on your home organization is a step in the right direction.
Keep things simple and have everything ready the night before. Have your clothes for the days laid out, lunch made and in the fridge. Have your keys, phone, purse in an easy place to grab or even already packed in your bag.
Stick to the basics in the morning. I tend to have a set order where possible. I wake up, I get washed, dressed, make-up, pack my bag and take lunch to go.I’m out of the house in no time without feeling the need to really rush. I know where everything is, I know what I need to do almost automatically, so I can just fly through the morning routine.
Plan your day
You might start to spot a theme here, but having everything prepped and planned as much as you can the night before can really help you streamline and reset for the next day. Be meticulous about your tasks, try to get down all the big and little tasks you want to accomplish that day.
Add in meetings, appointments, deadlines
Knowing when you have meeting and appointments and having them written down can help narrow down the work you can get done between these and help set you up for being as productive as possible throughout the day.
They don’t have to be big goals but little milestones. For example: reply to all my emails, send * the data they need, make lunch, go to the post office.
This is a really great way to not get overwhelmed and helps you understand how much you can actually get done in a day. Choose tasks you know you can finish quickly but also the task you’ve been putting off for weeks – today’s the day it gets done!
Give yourself breaks
I do feel there is such thing as over planning – if you don’t give yourself some breathing time, after a day you can feel burnt out. Streamlining your day doesn’t mean you can’t take unplanned breaks. Find what works for you – plan in breaks or just be flexible with your calendar.
Find a productive method that works for you
Everyone works differently and so the way you decide to streamline your day might be different to how your friend works. You might be someone who prefers to set times for every single task you want to get done. You may work better in 10 minute sprints – see how much you can get done in a short period of time.
3 goals and a bonus is a fun way to try – set yourself three goals (big or small) and try to complete those in a day. If you’ve finished those, see if you can squeeze your bonus in! Or, maybe you’re like the good old fashion checklist!
Know you can say no
This is definitely one that many of us struggle with (including myself!) but learning the positives of being able to decline meetings you don’t think you need to attend, not taking on a new project as it might harm the outcome of your other work. Being open and honest to yourself and others about how much you feel you’re capable of may seem to you as being vulnerable but actually it will gain you respect as you’re showing how well you truly know your boundaries.
Living a streamlined life definitely has lots of benefits but helping your productivity is one of the greatest benefits I’ve noticed. Even if you just pick some streamlining processes to work into your day, it’s a step in the right direction to upping your productivity!
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