It may be small tweaks or large changes, point is that you want to change something.
So you start to make these changes, and feel like you are progressing – but how do you know for sure that you have achieved something?
Organising tasks often aren’t visible – they may include making changes to how you use your time, or how you shop – they may involve clearing clutter from spaces in your home that aren’t used often or aren’t in plain site.
Its all very well and good getting busy and becoming more organised, but if you don’t stop every once in a while to actually see how far you’ve come, then you may be doing yourself a dis-service.
The consequences of not tracking your progress could be that you simply get a little demotivated and stop for a while, worse still you stop for good, or you may even suffer from burn out as you can’t see that you have tried to do too much too quickly – and who wants any of those?
Track your progress
It is really important to track progress when you start getting more organised, as its one of those things that can be really difficult to measure fully.
Its not like you are revising for an exam, and can see by what you’ve revised (and how far through a textbook or manual you have read) exactly how far you’ve come.
Think about it – if you are losing weight, you can track how much you lose each week/month and look back over your progress easily. When you see how much you’ve lost it can spur you on even more.
If you didn’t keep track then you may well forget the details and not give yourself as much credit as you deserve.
Its exactly the same with getting organised.
Now I’m not suggesting a huge extra task of writing down everything you do every day – but I really believe that its worth keep hold of your TO DO lists that you have finished, and moving the tasks specific to getting organised onto a DONE list.
The DONE list
How satisfying to create a list that has been done!
No work to do, just the satisfaction of reading what you’ve accomplished.
Creating one may just give you even more motivation to continue as well, which can’t be a bad thing!
And its easy to do – whenever you cross a TO DO off your TO DO list, add it to your DONE list (could be done at the end of each week).
Group the DONES in weekly portions, so you can see at a glance how far you’ve come – and trust me – you’ll be astonished at what you get done each week when you see it written down.
You may not think you’ve done a lot some weeks, but seeing it written down means theres no arguing!
(Another great name I’ve seen for this type of list is a TA-DA list!)
Are you doing the right things?
Another great reason for tracking progress is that you may find that you are always completing certain kinds of tasks, and leaving others that you don’t like so much (ironing for me!)
If you can see that you have done loads, but are leaving the less liked things on your TO DO list – then you will realise quite quickly that you will either not get those things done at all, or you will end up with loads of the least liked stuff at the end… neither of which works well when trying to get organised and stay motivated.
Keeping on track
Alongside checking that your DONEs are well balanced, you may use your DONE list to ensure that you aren’t doing too much, stretching yourself too far, or the reverse (too little!)
If you can clearly see what you have done each week then you can gauge whether you can fit more or less into your schedule so that you can maintain the momentum.
Getting organised shouldn’t mean creating too much pressure on yourself – it should mean that you can fit things easily into your routines, and become more productive as a result.
Indeed – you may even see that you are getting a little more done each week that the last, and this may be a direct result of you getting more and more organised – enjoy the journey!
Use your DONE list to reward yourself!
I wrote a post a while back about rewards, and the DONE list is the perfect way to see how far you’ve come, but also that you deserve a treat for all your hard work!
It needn’t be a big reward, often just a quiet cuppa will do the trick – but its so important to recognise how far you’ve come at every stage and acknowledge it in some way.
After all – if you were in an office and a project was completed successfully – chances are you would all be going out for drinks to celebrate – its the same thing here!
I don’t want to write it all down though…..
It really doesn’t take a long time to write it down, and you will be pleased you did when you see progress – but if you don’t like writing things down there is another way to track progress.
Why not take before and after photos of each task you complete?
Much like how I write a post about my organising projects on this blog, you could have a visual reminder of how far you’ve come – and that simple picture can really tell a thousand words!
(I use this a lot with my interior design business, as you can easily forget the amount of work thats gone into changing a room – its always worth doing!)
NB – This can only work on some organising tasks though such as decluttering, filing, sorting out cupboards and wardrobes etc…. – it won’t work with sorting out how you use your time for example – but its better than nothing if you really don’t want to write it all down.
Create a DONE list or take before and after photos, as you have always come further than you think
Reward yourself as well – as this will keep motivation high, and you will want to keep going more and more.
And lastly – give yourself a pat on the back – as just reading the posts on this blog means you are getting more organised and want to create changes – so GO FOR IT!