Organization Shmorganization

By Amanda Smyth Connor

The writer's current filing system/day planner
The writer's current filing system. Pink=Top Priority

I’ve uttered these words more than once, thinking to myself that I would just tackle each task as it came. “First come, first served.”

Flash forward to an epic breakdown a week later when I’m overwhelmed with various stages of incomplete projects.

So I’ve once again adopted a new organizational strategy. We’ll see how this one works out.  Many strategies before have tried and failed. Essentially, I’ll be devoting half of my day to one client and half to another. Sure this sounds overly simplified and it may lead to certain disaster, but one thing I am finding is that there’s more than one path to organizational nirvana, so I’ve got to keep looking for the best ways to stay organized.

I am inherently a lazy creature with a mild case of A.D.D. I have every intention in the world of recording meeting notes properly, completing research for a project, keeping up with my Quickbooks and staying on top of emails to clients, but sometimes there’s a “Real Housewives of New Jersey Reunion Marathon Extravaganza” that needs watching and then I forget everything that needs doing until it pops into my head at 4am a week later. Damn you, Andy Cohen.

What works for some doesn’t work for others. It’s not as simple as buying a filing cabinet and some fun post-it notes (see photo insert.) You have to keep developing your organization strategy in order to stay on top of the ebbs and flows of an ongoing workload.

While others may be looking for the meaning of life, my life quest will continue to be a quest for perfect organization. Until then, I’ll thank you for not judging me on my current filing system (again, see photo insert.)

Amanda Smyth Connor is a social media manager for a major publishing company, owns her own wedding planning business, and has managed online communities and content development for many start-up and Fortune 500 companies.  She has been a professional editor for more years than she can remember.

3 thoughts on “Organization Shmorganization”

  1. I joke about my ADD all the time, so I hear you loud and clear. I absolutely despised being forced into the Covey/Franklin Planner at one of the companies I worked at, because it’s just not the way my brain works. And, for the record, your desk is pristine compared to mine!

    For your quest, you might give a try to “Getting Things Done” by David Allen. There’s a bit of upfront work that you need to do, but it’s a much simpler and less rigid system than anything I’ve ever tried. Everything has a purpose, whereas I always felt like some systems are all about being anal retentive for the sake of being anal retentive!

  2. Jake, as always, wonderful advice. Thank you for the tip on the book! I’m ordering now. I can use all the help I can get on this journey to better organization. And it makes me feel better to know that others out there believe in the healing power of the post-it note organizer. 🙂

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