Well, the first quarter of the year is over and I’ve been feeling completely overwhelmed with all the things I have on my plate. Like seriously, how am I supposed to be a fully functioning adult, manage my finances, read the Bible, be a good worker, manage relationships and also stay healthy and fit. I often feel like I am failing with utilizing my energy and time effectively. That’s why staying organized is extremely important to me. It’s the only way I am able to maintain some type of efficiency with my time and resources. I use a couple of tools that help keep myself from missing appointments and events and track goals. Below are some of my favorite tools for organization that keep me from going completely insane:
- Google Drive and Calendar – Google does a remarkable job of streamlining its services and making your life as simple and efficient as possible. Before Google Drive, I would have to use several apps and carry a flash drive around just to house all of my documents. All of my docs are on Google Drive even the ones I do not create on their platform. It makes attaching documents to email so much easier…and you know what?… since I have been applying for jobs, a lot of job boards allow you to import your resumes and relevant documents from G-Drive directly. See?! They make your life super easy. You can create as many folders as your heart desires, create spreadsheets, word docs, and powerpoint presentations. You can upload unlimited docs from other platforms. Whatever you need, it can be done there. Admittingly, I am not sure how G-drive works if you don’t have a Gmail account, but if you don’t have one then get one, like everyone has one, LOL. Google calendar is also my jam because it syncs with almost everything. Got an Eventbrite event? A flight, hotel reservation, Evite, anything? You name it, it can be synced with your Google calendar. You can make custom events and invitations with recurrence features and reminder options. You can create custom colors and tasks on your calendar with due dates and alarms. There’s so much you can do here it’s ridiculous. Both platforms’ interface are user-friendly and easy to use. You can download the app to any of your devices. Sometimes I create docs right from my phone. You can also share your documents and calendars with other people allowing them to access it directly. That makes group projects so much easier!
- Wunderlist – Wunderlist is a task manager app that I have on all of my devices. Even though you can create tasks and reminders on Google calendar, I prefer Wunderlist. I use this app for grocery lists, “things to do” lists, etc. You can create several categories and notes. It has due date and reminder features, and you can export your lists and print them. Perhaps the best feature is that you can collaborate and share tasks and lists with others. It has as a great widget for easy and quick access.
- White Board or Poster – For those who are more visual, I also have projects/goals and tasks listed on a giant white poster board that I created. This poster is divided into three columns, Not Started, In Progress, Waiting. Now, this is more for tracking larger projects and goals and not everyday tasks. For example, for the podcast, one of our projects is to create a website. All of the little individual tasks that need to be completed under that project, like find a web designer, would go on my Wunderlist app. Things filed under “waiting” indicate that I am waiting on something or someone else to complete the project, but ultimately it’s out of my hands at that point. Each extension of my brand gets its own color. Like the podcast is in purple and Black Girl Affirmed is in Pink. This is a good tool to keep your goals on track and to visually see where you should be concentrating your efforts.
Lastly, focus on one thing at a time. I know our society would like for us to be extra productive and multitask everything but it’s not possible. Our brain can only focus on one thing at a time. So cut yourself some slack and relax. You’ve got this! I’m always looking for ways to be more productive and orderly so if you have a planner system that works well for you then share it with ya girl!