Can’t seem to make a dint in the daily onslaught of emails? Forgetting important appointments? Procrastinating like it’s an Olympic-level sport?
Entrepreneur and author Lorraine Murphy has been there. Now she’s written a book sharing the strategies she’s learned to get on top of it all (plus reduce stress and reach your goals) by getting organised. Remarkably organised.
Women’s Health chatted to the mum-of-one and master planner to get her top tips on getting stuff done.
Have you always been organised?
No I haven’t! Starting my own business in 2012 was the catalyst for me to get my ass in gear and get seriously organised. When I was running the show all on my own, I didn’t have any option but to be as efficient as possible – otherwise my business would have failed.
What’s been the biggest, game-changing lesson or hack you’ve learnt about getting organised?
Planning my week in advance has been an absolute game-changer. Taking thirty minutes to plan out the next seven days means I’m across everything that’s coming up that week, and that I’ve allocated enough time to make sure the various areas of my life are looked after.
If people can do one small thing to get more organised today, what would it be?
Write a list of everything they need to do, identify the top three priorities and get them done as soon as they can.
What are some of the worst habits or mistakes you see people making when it comes to organisation (or lack of)?
A lot of us run into the problem of being constantly in reactive mode – spending our days responding to queries/emails/messages rather than proactively tackling the tasks or activities that will move our own lives forward.
Why is decluttering so important and what’s your best advice for getting it done?
Clearing our physical space gives us endless mental space – in that space we can create the lives we dream of. I follow Marie Kondo’s approach, which involves booking out a full day to clear your home and systematically asking yourself if each possession sparks joy. My husband loves the fact that there’s a system and it makes it so much easier to achieve a clear, happy home.
What’s the best way to deal with incoming work emails?
Schedule time to specifically check and process emails – otherwise they’ll dictate your entire day. Also aim to touch each email just once: 1) delete it 2) forward it on to someone else 3) reply if it’ll take less than a minute 4) if it requires a more considered reply, then put it on your to do list and file the email until you’re ready to reply properly.
What does your morning routine look like?
It’s a little different now that we have a baby! I practise the Miracle Morning – so each day before our daughter wakes up, I meditate for 10-20 minutes, do an oracle card reading and journal. Then my husband cooks breakfast while I look after our daughter. Once she’s fed and changed, I do my hair and makeup. I do as much prep for the day as I can the night before, so my exit from the house (on days I’m going to the office) is pretty quick from there.
This article originally appeared on Women’s Health.