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At 18, I marched myself into the psychiatrist’s office, my mother hesitantly in tow demanding to know why I was so different. As I sat there, my leg bouncing up and down while he asked me a number of questions and before the appointment had ended he had confirmed what I had thought for a while: I had ADHD.
Having to navigate high school up until that point had been awful. It was constantly a game of catch up, and re-organizing things that had fallen into disarray once again. I could never keep up.
I finally had a better grasp of what was going on with me and what my diagnosis meant. Come college, I threw myself into organization. For anyone who knows me today, they know that I should have gone onto becoming a professional organizer instead of a bookkeeper but oh well. 🙂
Attempts at organization were made…and failed.
For years and years, I tried 10,301 paper planners, organizational systems and other “tricks” to try and organize my life, but nothing worked permanently.
After realizing that paper planners were just not laid out in a way that made sense to my brain, I tried creating my own. That was far too complex and took far too much time. Plus, as soon as I found something I “liked” I would use it for a week or two before it got lost in all the “organized” mess again.
I tried desk calenders, Google calendar, wall calendars, anything that could possibly keep me reminded of what I needed to do but nothing worked for me.
The struggle for control over my life seemed to get worse and worse. I was missing critical appointments for my cancer treatment, for job interviews, and everything in between.
My “organization” was really a bunch of messes shoved into bins where I knew where they lived. I lived in a place where I was never ready for company and I was constantly spending days deep cleaning and getting rid of items.
Finally, I found a solution!
After years of struggle and frustration, just this year I found a combination of solutions that have changed my life.
The first thing I did was start my minimalism journey. At first, I didn’t want to get on the “popular band-wagon”, because I am just not that girl. But my gracious has this been a lifesaver!
Not only am I no longer cleaning constantly, but I know where things are and my life has been made easier. There’s no last-minute rushing to find the thing before I sprint out the door. Everything has a place and stays there.
The second thing that rocked my world (seriously) is finding the Artful Agenda. Artful Agenda is a new mix of an online planner, an app and a paper planner. And the features on it seem to be endless.
- A monthly view
- Monthly goals and inspirational quotes
- A weekly view that shows your days’ schedule, your weekly goals, and your meals for each day.
- A daily view that lets you see your schedule, gives you the ability to set priority tasks and tasks that aren’t as pertinent. You can also add a custom list, see your meals for the day and track your water intake.
- There is also a list view where you can make as many lists as you need. I use this for my grocery lists.
- You can integrate Google Calendar, iCal, and Outlook.
- The best part is that you can customize the colors, theme and “handwriting” of the planner. (And there are even stickers!) This is where the beauty of it caught my eye and got me hooked!
With Artful Agenda, I am no longer losing my planner. I now have it with me everywhere I go, on my phone on any of my computers. I can organize my home life and both of my work lives.
Want to try Artful Agenda for yourself? Sign up and use referral code RA14564 and you will get exclusive access to a new planner cover!! (This costs you nothing extra and helps me keep The Homemaker’s Cottage up and running!)
I think I am finally ready and excited (for maybe the first time ever) for the new year to come.
What are some tips and tricks that you use to organize yourself each year? What new things are you looking forward to using or trying this year that you haven’t’ before? Leave a comment below!