4 Tips for Staying Organized to Help Increase Productivity

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Going from working in an office setting to working from home in our tiny apartment, with limited surfaces, and a puppy was quite the adjustment. Some days I still wonder how I’ve gotten 130+ days into quarantine with only a limited number of meltdowns. And while no day is ‘perfect,’ I have finally been able to find what works for me to help stay organized and increase my productivity, and I could not be happier! 

If you’re like me and are balancing 364839493 things (a 9-5, side hustle, ‘social’ life), I hope these tips help you find your groove so you can get shit done.

Keep a Schedule

I am not, or will ever be, someone that can just roll out of bed and sit down at my desk to start working. I need my ‘me’ time in the morning and I sure as heck do not want to start working the instant I wake up. 

If you’re the same way – Finding a schedule that works for your mornings is crucial. Whether you’re getting up and doing your hair and makeup, and getting dressed, before you start working or you are simply waking up, brewing coffee and eating breakfast, and maybe showering before you sit down for the day, having a schedule that you follow each day will make you feel productive even on days when your work output is a little less.

Utilize a Planner

Whether it’s digital or paper, having a planner to reference throughout the day will keep you on schedule and help ensure you don’t miss any phone calls, meetings, or appointments. It’s also a good way to keep your life as a whole organized and avoid the stress of double booking yourself!

I use both a paper and digital planner – go big or go home, right? I like using both so that if I’m out and about, or my if my planner is in another room, I’m able to still get the information I need from digital planner.

When it comes to a digital planner, I simply use Google Calendar and even have a separate calendar that Chris and I share, which is extremely helpful for keeping our schedules straight. For a physical paper planner, I cannot life without my Golden Coil planner! It’s 100% customizable, the paper is nice and thick so ink doesn’t bleed through, and with several cover options, it’s easy to pick a planner that reflects your personality. 

Check out my full Golden Coil planner review here!

Create a Solid To-Do List

Raise your hand if your to-do list is a mile long at all times 🙋🏻‍♀️ I’d be nowhere without a to-do list and honestly, probably wouldn’t get anything done. Outlining everything you need to tackle all in one place will allow you to adjust your day, make a plan, and get shit done.

I’ve been using this notepad trio for around six months now and I’m obsessed! I love that the sheets can be ripped off and fastened in my planner, have checkboxes, and that each pad covers all aspects of my life – general to-do’s, grocery shopping, and projects around the house. Generally, I write out my full to-do list on the to-do notepad, break down my tasks by day in my planner, and fastened it into my planner with a book dart.

In addition to creating a physical to-do list and my planner, I also utilize Asana! If you haven’t tried it yet, it is a GAME 👏🏻 CHANGER 👏🏻 I have separate projects for the things I’m currently working on and love that when working collaboratively, I can add a different assignee to the task, add in a due date, and any other comments/notes!

New to Asana? Check out this beginner’s guide!

Time Batch Emails

Opening an unruly inbox is stressful AF and nobody’s got time to answer hundreds of emails, right as they come in. If you do this, you’ll be answering emails all freakin’ day. Instead, giving time batching a try!

Plan to check your emails 2-3 times a day (morning, noon & night!) for an hour or so. This will help reduce distractions throughout your day, will manage expectations regarding response times, as well reduce the feelings of stress and overwhelm when logging into your email.

What are your tips for increasing productivity?

Leave a Reply

26 Comments

  1. 7.27.20
    Rach said:

    I needed this post! Lately, my productivity has gone down and need all the tips and motivation!

    http://www.rdsobsessions.com

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      The worst, right?!!

  2. 7.27.20
    Lizzie said:

    These are all such great tips! I do all of these butt I need to try to check my email inbox a few times a day. I usually get too overwhelmed lol!

    Lizzie
    http://www.lizzieinlace.com

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      thanks Lizzie!! Emails are such a blackhole for me so I try to avoid them as much as possible!

  3. 7.27.20
    Jessica Camerata said:

    Such good tips. I like using Asana but have been super lazy about sticking to it. Wish there was a way to get me INTO the habit of using the tools I have ha! also, NEED A TATTE LATTE!

    xo Jessica
    My Style Vita

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      YES! It’s so easy to push them off. I’ve been using the app on my phone a lot, which helps!

  4. 7.27.20

    I needed this post for reenforcement. I am working on focusing on one task at a time, and not check email in between other projects.

    ❥ tanvii.com

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      Opening my email is always a blackhole!

  5. 7.27.20
    Dana Mannarino said:

    Seriously OBSESSED with these tips and those adorable notebooks/notepads. Ordering now!

    Dana | It’s Casual Blog 

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      They’re the cutest and the two women that founded the company are AMAZING! I love their planners, too!

  6. 7.27.20
    Stephanie said:

    These are such awesome tips! I vary from you a bit, in that I wake up and immediately begin working (from my bed). However, one thing is still the same: I HAVE to use a planner! Without it, I think I’d lose my mind haha. I think it actually IS my mind at this point! I’ll have to look into Asana. I’ve heard of it, but never tested it for myself.

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      My recent thing is scrolling through Instagram when I first wake up… I need to eliminate that habit ASAP! Let me know what you think of Asana!

  7. 7.27.20
    Lee said:

    I friend of mine just mentioned Asana to me earlier in the week, I’d never heard of it before! It sounds so cool, I definitely need to start using it!

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      It’s seriously the best and makes keeping everything organized SO easy! I even use it to complete tasks around the house!

  8. 7.28.20

    I could always use a boost in the organization department and these tips are so helpful! Thanks for sharing! xoxo, Sarah

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      Thanks Sarah!

  9. 7.28.20
    Jamaria Johnson said:

    This is such a useful post! I just recently started workout full time again so staying organized is huge for me! Thanks for sharing! Xo

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      I’m so glad I could help!! Good luck with work!

  10. 7.29.20
    Greta said:

    This post makes me miss Tatte bakery! One of my favorite spots in Boston!

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      Such a good spot for coffee!

  11. 8.2.20
    Lily said:

    I’m all about a planner and making lists…they are so helpful!

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      A planner is a must for me!!

  12. 8.3.20
    Emely said:

    Great tips. To-do lists are a must for me. And a grocery list.

    • 8.5.20
      Rachel said:

      Thanks Emely!

  13. 8.9.20
    Kristina said:

    Making a to-do list is key for me- I use the Reminders app on my phone and it feels so good to check things off! I’m definitely not as productive as I could be theses days but this still helps!

  14. 8.25.20
    Kathleen said:

    One thing that makes me feel productive is having a neat and good looking desk. I feel so motivated when I see all my stationary neatly organized. I’m glad that I was able to buy a planner last year for this year and it’s been helping me a lot. I try to write to-do lists everyday for my task and it makes me feel so giddy whenever I tick off one task on the list.