Organization is a skill that takes time and effort. With the New Year here, many are thinking of ways to elevate their organizational skills.

Whether it’s investing in a new planner or honing in on new habits, organization is needed to live an effective life.

If you’re looking to enhance your organization skills and get a firm grasp on the New Year, consider these 11 mistakes to avoid so that you can help you get your life together and develop positive habits.

1. Not Setting a Goal

Goal setting is the first step to getting organized. By creating your own set of priorities, you’re eliminating what doesn’t serve you and welcoming positive energy.

2. Setting Too Big of a Goal or Too Many

On the flip side of this, it’s possible to overwhelm yourself with either too big of a goal or too many. The trick here is to start with small, attainable goals as opposed to one major one. This will help you eliminate feeling overwhelmed and allow you to celebrate small victories.

3. Not Utilizing Accountability

It’s easy to miss the gym or slack off on your passion project when there aren’t any real consequences to your actions. Instead of leaving your progress up to chance, hold yourself accountable to actually doing what you set out to do. This will help you to stick to your schedule and stay organized.

Whether you need a person or a consequence, find something that works for you in order to keep yourself accountable. Sites like Healthy Wage have worked really well for a lot of people, because not only is it accountability but a potential financial reward.

4. Not Rewarding Yourself

In order to meet your goals and stay motivated, you have to reward yourself. Celebrate even the smallest of victories and reward yourself with self-care “treats” when you meet your goals. This will keep you excited about your goals and tempted to continue.

5. Skipping The Alarms

One of the best ways to stay on top of your to-do list is to set alarms. Whether it’s on your phone or setting traditional alarm clocks, having that little reminder will help you stay on track. Set your bill schedule, deadlines and other important information so you can always stay in the know.

6. Not Using Some Sort of Planner/Calendar

Planners have become all the rage. People use them as scrapbooks, journals and more. Keep your life organized by investing in a good planner. This will give you a visual of what you need to accomplish. You can write out your feelings, create monthly vision boards and keep track of your events. Writing out your responsibilities will give you clarity that’s unmatched.

7. Keeping Things Cluttered

Trying to stay organized in a cluttered space is counterproductive. In fact, it can bring about more stress than you initially intended. Start this New Year off right by cleaning out all forms of clutter you may have.

Throw away old clothes, items and junk that’s simply holding you back. This will help you develop your mental strength and stay organized.

My friend Dana has a great 5 Step Clutter Shakedown that I’ve gone through, and it’s amazing for eliminating clutter without overwhelming your life! Check it out here.

8. Not Having a Monthly Goal

Each month provides an opportunity for a new start. Take advantage of this gift by setting goals you can meet. If you noticed that you struggled with productivity last month, make that a priority this month. Goals aren’t just for the beginning of the year!

Some people find that it really helps to create vision boards with your monthly goals illustrated on them. This will help you to stay on track in the coming months.

9. Not Saying “No”

One of the biggest hurdles to sticking to your personal schedule is getting caught up in other tasks. For example, Wednesdays are your designated gym days. However, your friends want to go out for drinks after work on Wednesday night. You haven’t been sticking to your schedule and it’s impacting your mental health.

What do you do? Well, start by learning how to put yourself first and say no. Distractions, whether positive or negative, can throw you off of your schedule. This can make you feel disorganized and anxious.

I find that this is a big one I constantly have to work on. Wanting to be agreeable and say “yes” to people can be a huge detriment to your life.

Learn how to say no and not feel guilty about it.

10. Waking Up Late

Waking up late can make you feel behind before you even begin the day.

If you challenge yourself to wake up 15-30 minutes earlier each day, you’ll be amazed at how much you can accomplish. Doing this will give you the opportunity to get done everything you intended and start the day with a fresh mind.

11. Not Preparing For the Day The Night Before

This is my favorite thing to do – make my to-do list the night before. Not only does this help me stay organized, but it helps me sleep better! If my list is already made, I won’t have all my to-do items running through my head while I’m trying to fall asleep.

It also relieves some stress the following day, if you can prepare other things the night before. The best way to alleviate rushed feelings is to prepare for your days the night before. Lay your clothes out, pack your lunch and get your items ready before bed. This will make your morning routine seamless and enjoyable.

Getting organized is definitely a challenge, but a fulfilling one. Make your 2019 great by implementing these helpful tips into your daily routine. You’ll begin to feel more organized and prepared for everything that comes your way.

But remember, one of the biggest things to getting organized is removing the things in your life that are a distraction or take up space. Be sure to check out Dana’s 5-Step Clutter Shakedown HERE.