Let's Get Organized! Organizational Tips & Strategies!

One of the biggest factors in whether or not I feel stressed on any given workday is how organized I feel. The best way I know to get my head on straight for the day is by creating a list. Lists help me stay on track throughout the day as well as prioritize the work I need to get done. Without a list, I feel scattered and unproductive. With a well-done list, I feel prepared to tackle the day and crush my goals.


I’ve been thinking a lot about how I stay organized and what systems and habits I’ve developed that actually reduce feelings of anxiety and overwhelm that occur when working for multiple companies and having lots of things to do. Here are some of the things I’ve been doing that have been game changers! If you have some of your own helpful strategies leave them in the comments below!

Want support or guidance as you try to implement the strategies listed below?

Check out my Etsy Shop and TPT Store to download printable and online organizational tools.

A FREE weekly online ESL teacher schedule is available for download from my TPT Store.

I love feedback so do not hesitate to let me know how these tools help you stay organized!

Condense Your List(s)

How many lists do you have, and how long are they?

Overly lengthy lists can sometimes cause more harm than good. I am definitely guilty of creating countless lists that go on for what seem like forever...but NO MORE! Instead of helping me feel organized, long lists left me feeling overwhelmed because they weren't realistic. Can you relate? Instead of feeling motivated and ready to tackle the list I was left feeling like I’d rather curl up into a little ball. I recognized that these lists were doing more harm than good and I learned that I needed to condense my lists. Now I stick to two main lists. They are much easier to keep track of and they focus on what I can do in the near future instead of focusing months ahead of time. I create one list with my weekly to-dos and another which includes my daily teaching/work schedule. This helps me stay on task and focus on what I can realistically accomplish in the near future without getting overwhelmed.

Have a lot on your mind? Do a brain dump!

Bearded man sits at a desk writing a list. His notepad, pen and hands are in the foreground.
Have a lot of your mind? Create a brain dump list!

I am a visual learner so I find creating a "brain dump" list extremely helpful. A "brain dump" is when you write out everything and anything that has been on your mind. When I do this my list usually circulates around the things that I have been thinking I would like to get done or ideas about projects that I have for the future. The brain dump list is not necessarily organized but it is helpful to reference when organizing my thoughts. Once I have everything out on paper I am able to take the things I wrote and group them into things that will go on my daily schedule and on my weekly to-do list. If the activity does not fall into either of these categories then I know it is not a priority and I can save it for later.

Prioritize your TO-DO's

Sometimes it is easy to feel overwhelmed because instead of focusing on what we need to complete we get caught thinking of everything we could possibly get done. Sure, if we had unlimited time then maybe we could cross everything off that to-do list but let's be real... that is not sustainable and is more likely to make you feel defeated, anxious, and exhausted instead of productive and accomplished.

Try prioritizing what you NEED to get done and what you would like to get done. I have found that my "need" list is always shorter than I think and by organizing myself this way I am clear on what my priorities are and what needs my focus first. If you get everything done from your "need" column you can try and knock some things off of the “would like to” list. Anything additional you cross off feels like a bonus, which is a huge boost! These small wins will help you stay motivated and feeling good about everything that you have accomplished.

You can't pour from an empty cup.

There are only so many hours in a day and it would be a shame to waste them away doing chores, running errands, and working. In order to show up in this world in a positive way, we need to pour into ourselves.

What do you enjoy doing? What are your favorite activities? Do you find it too easy to replace those fun activities with things from your to-do list? If that is the case you may find it beneficial to schedule time to relax or give yourself planned breaks throughout the day so you can recharge and reset. Being intentional about creating time to relax every day is a great way to avoid burnout and create a balanced schedule that is sustainable.

Visibility is key!

Raise your hand if you have ever created a list and then lost it. I don't know about you, but my hand is up high. If you were next to me maybe we could high-five.

What good is a list if it's lost? Now you either have to waste time hunting around the house for your list or create a new one. Either way, there are better uses of your time. For this reason, I keep my schedule and lists hanging by my desk or workstation so that it is always clearly visible and top of mind.

Celebrate your wins!

Did you cross something off your list? Did you get something done? If you answered yes, then it is time to celebrate! Do a happy dance! Listen to your favorite song! Pat yourself on your back!

You are always going to have things to do, your list will probably never be completely done so enjoy yourself along the way and celebrate your wins. Remember, you are awesome and you deserve joy :)

Want support or guidance as you try to implement the strategies listed above?

The organizational tool examples pictured in this blog can be purchased from my

Etsy Shop or TPT Store!

A FREE weekly teacher schedule is also available for download in my TPT Store.

I love feedback so do not hesitate to let me know how these tools help you stay organized!


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