Sometimes, We Are Too Organised!

Is there such a thing?

Photo by Sharad kachhi on

For those who don’t know me, my life is organised down to the last second. This has served me extremely well in the workplace and in terms of delivering key outcomes.

However, at home, Chaos Theory is in full flight 😂 If my family are left to their own devices, things pile up everywhere!

My life over the course of a week once upon a time – Look familiar?

In order to “accommodate” everyone at home, my wife a number of years ago, put in place a calendar made out of large white wall tiles on the wall next to our front door. In short, it is a permanent, rolling, three monthly calendar. Like any whiteboard, it is easy to update using whiteboard markers. Also, flyers, notes and other things can be stuck to it as required. Lastly, it’s so easy to clean using the usual products for cleaning a whiteboard.

I realise we are in the age of uber technology and all that, and we should all be on our smart phones, tablets and computers working out collaboratively what we are all doing, but this doesn’t work re our (grown up) children. I read a post the other day regarding making small, but effective changes by removing technology from our lives and I was pleased to see our “analogue” approach was on it!

The Time Conundrum and Being Super Organised

Despite all the advice and success, most people roll their eyes when I say they can be organised too!

So, our daughter was discussing with the family the other day how organised she is, including her extensive phone call back list. Her phone call back list is so long that if someone doesn’t answer her call straight away, by the time they eventually do call her later that day, she has completely forgotten about why she called them in the first place! She doesn’t have time to get her thoughts into gear.

Now, my daughter, like me is uber organised. She is currently the head of production and set design for an Australian feature film: Before Dawn, works part time, is trying to sort out her blog, spends time with her boyfriend of course, and studies in her spare time. However, her latest comment got me thinking which led to an inevitable conclusion:

She had over organised herself 😱

We have all been there haven’t we? We work out our to-do-lists and some of us even prioritise what we are going to do over the next week, a fortnight from now and so on (or if you are like me, perhaps the next three to six months 😂).

So, what is the most simple thing you can do to simplify your life?

A Big Insight – Did You Know We Get Distracted By Low Priorities!

The rules for you regarding low priority items. Linda gets annoyed at me regarding the last point, but it seems to work 😉

However, if you are not comfortable with ditching the low priority items, then read on.

From a work perspective, low priorities are items that you can, in all honesty, delegate to others. Wether this is within your team, or those who are direct reports or perhaps you can explore this with another working group.

Low priority items will on average, make up about 25% of your workload. Imagine what you could do if you were able to get this time back!

When it comes to delegating tasks, it’s essential that you:

  • Establish if the person you have decided to delegate tasks to is not only capable, but has the capacity to perform these tasks as well;
  • Identify if they need upskilling to carry out the tasks in question;
  • Give clear instructions or information on how to perform the task. This may require you linking them up with another team member who can show them how to carry out the task;
  • Refrain from taking the task back over. There are those out there who cannot let go. If you have ever participated in the straws and pins tower exercise you will know exactly who I am referring to 😊

A Final Pearl of Wisdom

If all else fails, and it hasn’t yet for us at home, we can always put a nice little water feature in front of the white tiles by the front door! Our cats would like that 🐈

Mo and Minnie – I Do Think Our Cats Have The Right Idea At Times!

So – how organised are you?

12 thoughts on “Sometimes, We Are Too Organised!

  1. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, I hate delegating tasks and tend to do everything by myself. I’m always either putting too much effort or not caring at all, there’s no in between. 😅 Anyways, my organizational skill is something I’m proud of, if your familiar with Monica from Friends, I’m like her but a little less neurotic 😅

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m testing out a new kind of list where instead of writing out everything I want to do in a day, I wrote a list of tasks ranked from top to lowest priority. That way, I’ll remember to put most of my energy into the most important tasks and hopefully I’ll worry less if I don’t complete the lower priority ones. Although, reading your article, I’m wondering if I should just take them off the list altogether! 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s really good Ceri. You will now be able to look at what key tasks you can undertake on any given day.

      One of the major factors in why people struggle with organising themselves, is that, mentally and even physically, we can only deal with a maximum number of 13 items a day. Once, we have more than that on a daily list, our brain says “I don’t want to play anymore. “

      We are all different. If possible, when you feel comfortable, see if you can plan these key tasks out over the week.

      Although with low priority items I take them off the list, if there is the odd one here and there I can do quickly and effectively, I do it.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I like the tile calendar idea! It’s smart!
    What I often use is our bathroom mirror 😀 pretending I was reminding myself but it’s actually a reminder for my husband.
    I still use the paper reminders, like post-it’s all over my desk 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Friends of ours had done it some time previously and when Linda mentioned it to me, I thought it was a good idea straight up. So, when we put it place, we used it as an opportunity for the boys to learn the basic principles of wall tiling 😊 Lol re your husband. No post it reminders for me, I have never been able to do that other than a to do list.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Indeed a good idea to get organized… I bet it’s gonna be good for our homeschooling too!
        We’re more of Chaos Theory at home as well… we’ve gotten by so far 😀

        & at the office… my colleagues would tease me about my multiple post its and my calendar doodles.. they are amazed at how someone who seemed so techie would resort to such primitive ways…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes, it will be good for homeschooling and if it leads to a bit more structure at home, then that is a good result too.

        With work, my view is you do whatever works for you when it comes to these things. Technology doesn’t always cut it. Keeping it simple is the key.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Right! I remember one of executive directors 😅— he can mess his office in one sitting. But he is one of the most effective executives I’ve met in my career…


  4. Thank you for the excellent article. I like the idea of removing low priority items. Simple, but true. But, a part of me likes the low priority tasks because they are less intense and allow me to procrastinate. Of course, that’s why I need to remove them from my lists.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m very organized but super lazy … I tend to keep things in place because I hate having to tidy up again. The delegation thing really does work when everyone pulls their weight, but sometimes the perfectionist in me just can’t deal with how sloppy of a job people do so I’ll just do it myself 😅

    Liked by 1 person

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