Late getting to work today because you decided to clean out your closet or pull down your summer wardrobe? Was the lure of shoes lined up in pairs and winter clothes moved to the back the closet too much to pass up? Feeling good about the closet but bad about the procrastination? Not so fast. You’ve likely done yourself a lot of good. Organization at home pays off at work. Disorganization, clutter, and confusion where you live has an effect on professional productivity. That clean closet is offering you more than Martha Stewart endorphins.

Clutter at Home

These opportunities for disarray present themselves all over the house. In the bathroom, you might spend valuable time searching for your razor or mascara. You’re sure to get frustrated wasting time searching for the mate to your favorite shoes or that perfect tie in your closet. In the kitchen, finding the right lid for the Tupperware container could become an unwelcome lesson in patience and anger management. That’s right, it’s not just the physical impacts, i.e. running late, tripping over a toy, etc, as we’ve discussed in the past, clutter causes anxiety and none of us need (more of) that.

This Includes Calendar Organization

This clutter concept extends to the calendar as well. The calendar is one key way we organize our time. It can enable us to get more done in a defined amount of time. The busier you are, the more important it is to maintain a reliable and up to date calendar. Those of you with children really understand this. Family calendar management is no small feat. In fact, this time of year is one of the busiest for families. School finals, other end-of-year testing, graduations, end-of-year parties, teacher appreciation day/week/month, Mother’s Day, the list goes on. I think the Holderness family sums up this time of year perfectly in this video. Hope it gives you a laugh.

Review Your Calendar The Day Before

At first, this may seem terribly obvious: you have to review your calendar to get the benefit of the organization. The reality is, many of us fail to take a few minutes to look over our ever-so-organized calendar ahead of time. This can really throw your productivity off. Not too long ago, after enjoying a personally productive morning of exercise and a few home responsibilities, I hoped on the computer to begin some work on a deadline. Up popped a reminder for a dentist appointment in thirty minutes. I had completely forgotten. So much for meeting my deadline. I was lucky to have made it to the appointment on time. Not only did I run into time constraints and missed deadlines, but I also had to deal with feelings of frustration. Both of which impacted my productivity for the day.

My recommendation is to review your calendar of events for the following day the evening before. Make it a habit. For some of us, this may mean the calendar review is our last task before heading out of the office. For others, it makes sense to review the calendar before heading off to bed.

It Pays Off

I realize this may come as something of bad news for those of you who’d rather have a root canal than to organize the closet, or the kitchen, the living room, garage…..I could go on. And I know some of the more carefree among us find a calendar restraining. But, a little planning and organization up front will pay off for you at home and at work.

Sara Genrich is an Organization and Productivity Consultant, an Evernote Certified Consultant and the creator of the Organizing@Work for Success Workshop.  She’s committed to providing real-life solutions so her clients have time to focus on the things that really matter.

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