A Guide to Staying Organized - B Loved Boston

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A Guide to Staying Organized

As much I love "how to" posts, most of the time I leave them feeling even more confused on how to actually implement changes - I really hope that at the end of this, you'll feel like you can take at least one thing away to help how you organize your ever growing to-do list. I also want to mention that this post is not sponsored in any way by Wunderlist, I just really love the service & have found that it has helped me immensely. 
How to Stay Organized
A few months ago I took a time management course through work, while most people tend to dread these, I actually love training's because I find that I can take something away not only for my professional life, but for my personal one as well - winning!! The basis of this course was on the fundamentals which Stephen Covey came up with and most of the course was taken from, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. So what did I learn in the training and how did it help me with my organization? My key takeaway was to define ALL of my roles in life. What does this mean? This means I now look at my time in chunks and the things I have to do within each role I have. 
My roles are: 
1. my full-time job (which in and of itself involves marketing, business development & events) - I keep all tasks related to this role in outlook - it's complete and separate from my personal life. 
2. my home life - this includes my role as a wife, daughter, friend & sister 
3. my blog 
4. my wedding & event planning business
5. my writing for a stylist's blog 

You'll notice I also use Wunderlist to hold links for things I want to purchase, my 30 before 30 list & just a running list of things I want to get done around the house (this is shared with Gary) - another bonus to Wunderlist is that you can share with a business partner, friend or spouse. So let's say you're going on a trip, add in all the things you want to do in that city, or have a running list of things you want to buy for the house...the list (haha so pun-ny) could go on and on! 
How to use wunderlist
Within each to-do you can go a little deeper and add a note for yourself, even attach a file that goes with the to-do, set a reminder or give yourself a due date. If you add a reminder or due date, you will get an email from Wunderlist (or notification - depends how you have it set up) that your task is due. 

Once you define your roles, staying organized is so much easier - rather than having a to-do list that is a mile long, you now have tasks broken out within your specific roles. Sometimes those blend together, but most of the time it's clearly defined. 
how to use wunderlist
For my pen & paper lovers don't you worry, you can still print out your entire list so that you can feel the satisfaction of crossing things off - tell me I'm not alone here! 
Make the most out of your notebook

Let's take it to stationary! As much as I love having notebooks for all different facets of my life, this starts to get really cluttered and I end up with 10 half full (albeit cute) notebooks! My action plan was to condense to only two notebooks! I know I can't believe it either! I section out the notebook (blog, bespoke & other)This means when I go into a meeting I'm always carrying the same notebook with me. No need to shuffle through papers for past notes & this also means I have one folder for each of my roles. These are my favorite to use for work & these I use for home/business stuff
Tackling your inbox

While this doesn't actually deal with organization - this little tip will help with your time management. I've recently implemented the "one-touch" rule to my emails. That means, I only look at my personal (anything not 9-5  related) e-mail during certain times in the day AND if I read an email I immediately need to have an action with that e-mail. That can be responding immediately, trashing it or marking it unread to go back to again (not suggested, but it happens). This way e-mails get answered on my terms and I never go to bed with any unread - this makes me uneasy! The bulk of my blog emails get answered during my commutes - it's currently the most time I spend without something else taking my attention. 
via


Wunderlist syncs with your phone or iPad so you can get to your list whenever and wherever you need it! While I realize this system doesn't work for everyone, I would love to know what tips & tricks you have to staying organized!

79 comments

  1. All great tips girl! I have like 3 notebooks/calendars to stay organized. It seems hectic but it works for me! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  2. Love these tips and Wunderlist sounds great! I have written lists everywhere and while the lists help to keep me organized I so need to condense! Super great ideas here!!

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  3. These are great. I definitely want to check out that service! My planner is my go-to on staying organized. I make lists on each specific day of things to get done. That works for the day-to-day, but I definitely think I need to implement some of these suggestions for longer term "things to do."!

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  4. I love notebooks to keep organized. And To-do lists haha :) Love the feeling of an empty inbox. I have a separate email app for my blog emails and I try to keep my inbox at 0 showing me that I've responded to everyone.

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  5. I need to do so much better with my organizing. I have my planner that I write in, but I sometimes forget to go back and look at it haha! And then I have random notes throughout the house and on my desk at school. I pretty much make a new note everyday at school of things to get accomplished. Is Wanderlist a free service?
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

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  6. Yes to the one touch rule! That helps me stay organized so much. So glad Wunderlist has been so helpful for you.

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  7. i currently have 786 emails, so I need that tip! and i love a traditional list i can cross off. def not alone there!

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  8. What a cool app! I check all of my email accounts throughout the day, but agree with having to take action after I open one. Love that you can share a list with a spouse, friend, someone else!

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  9. We LOVE Wunderlist in our house. It's so helpful to me to know what my husband needs at the store, and if he goes to buy it when he's on his lunch break, it's gone and I know that. Just one of many examples of why that app is so great.

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  10. These are good tips for staying organized! I try to do the same thing with my emails - if I don't do something about it the first time that I read it, chances are that I probably never will do something about it.

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  11. Staying organixpzed can be such a challenge, especially when you have a lot of balls to juggle. Wanderlust sounds like a great way to help out!

    Xoxo,

    Whitney & Blaire

    Peaches In A Pod

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  12. Wanderlust is such a great app! I have it but don't use it...I'm more about the pen and paper when it comes to making list, but I really need to make the switch. I find myself juggling 25 different pieces of paper sometimes haha!

    xo, Rachel
    A Blonde's Moment

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  13. Awesome tips! I especially love take it to stationary, I just love the satisfaction of writing things down, categorizing them, and crossing them off <3
    Green Fashionista

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  14. These are such great ideas!! I love the idea of dividing all your different "life areas" (I have so many!) to keep it all in check! Thanks!

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  15. Great post and tips. Thanks for this it was helpful. Gemma x
    www.jacquardflower.uk

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  16. it's def tough for me to stay organized! but i think that the software i use at work is great. and just making lists. and using post its. and my iPhone calendar. haha all of them combine to be helpful tools. since a big part of my role at work is to organize my team, i have to be on top of everything. i think it's just easy for me :) but funny enough i hate to be organized in my personal life!

    xoxo cheshire kat

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  17. I could not agree with you more on feeling more confused after reading "how to" posts." That app sounds great though! I just use my planner but this might be good for Chris. I am just trying very hard to be more organized and eliminate the clutter in our place. Thank you so much for sharing lady and I hope that you are having a great morning! :-)

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  18. Such a great post!! Love it! xo
    http://publiclivessecretrecipes.com/2016/03/where-to-eat-rockit-burger-bar.html

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  19. Great post! I needed to read this! I try so hard to be organized and I am for a while but then I tend to get lazy or loose the motivation but this definitely helps! Thanks for sharing! =)

    Reagan

    www.reaganinmyownworld.com

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  20. Definitely something I need to look into. Currently I'm all about those checklists so I'm glad that you can print off the to do list still ;-)

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  21. Great tips, lady! I use notebooks and my planner but don't use my phone as much as I should. It stresses me out to much.

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  22. Love this post!! I'm still trying to get back on track ever since James was born and this is such great guidance! I will be looking into wunderlist- I especially love that it can be shared with Eric!

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  23. Great advice! Staying organized is a CONSTANT battle for me!
    Traci
    waltzmetoheaven.com

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  24. Time management is one of my biggest struggles and this system seems like it would be really helpful towards that. I love how you have the notebooks divided and your email system. These are such helpful tips!

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  25. I was eagerly awaiting this post and can already tell that I would love Wunderlist and need to try it out! I really love the tip about defining your time by your different roles - I haven't tried that yet but can see how that would be helpful.

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  26. This post is so fantastic. I feel like I'm all over the place right now trying to get everything I need to get done. These are such helpful tips. Thanks for sharing.

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  27. I love seeing how things work for some people - even if it doesnt work full on for me, I can use some of these tips. Thanks for posting this. I ALWAYS need some more organization in my life

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  28. So true. As creatives it is so easy to get pulled in tons of directions and start to mix all of our tasks. What a great way to stay organized.

    xo,
    Sara Kate Styling

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  29. I always end up using two or three stationary items to write down notes/goals etc and they get lost in the mess that needs to be cleaned up haha. Thanks for sharing this. Def looking into it now that we are adding another baby to our family. Xo

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  30. If you could see the amount of sticky notes laying all over my desk. haha Man oh man do I need to just get with the tech world. (; I think I'm going to check out Wunderlist. Sounds super cool!

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  31. Great tips! I've never heard of Wunderlist before, but I like how you can print it off. My husband and I use anylist...we use the free service, so I'm not sure if you can attach files, etc. But I like that idea. and I have so many emails it's hard to keep track. I have emails full of pin this...type emails...oye!

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  32. Great tips, I definitely need to check out wanderlist. I need to do that email trick because sometimes I'm on top of it, but other times I'm not...so being as consistent as I can is key.

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  33. It is like you knew I was a mile behind in everything in my life! I'm a huge list maker as well (both personally and professionally). I just dont know how I would remember it all if I didn't write everything down.

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  34. Downloading Wunderlist RIGHT now, I need all the organizational help I can get going into this summer with some big changes coming to my day to day! And I swear by the one touch rule when it comes to email!

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  35. I need that app - it sounds so amazing. I jot things down in a calendar I have for the blog and then in my notes of my phone I do my to-do lists - but I can surely benefit from an app like that - thanks for sharing!!

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  36. Seriously awesome tips. Like I told you, I used Wunderlist years ago. I love the sharing feature and you can print them?! Awesome-totally using this again.

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  37. Yet another great and useful post, Biana! I told you this before, but you have inspired me to get started with my planning and organization again and it has made my life that much easier and I feel a lot less stressed because I have a better idea of what my day and week looks like. I need to read that book that your class was based off of, I just checked the link and it has such wonderful reviews, it seems life changing! Thanks so much for sharing all of these fabulous tips, they really do help! I hope you have a wonderful week ahead, beautiful!

    XO,

    Jalisa
    www.thestylecontour.com

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  38. This is the second Wunderlist post I've read in the last couple of weeks-- I need to cave and download the app!

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  39. Love this post. I love everything about organization. I'm still getting the hang of it though. I'm definitely going to look into the app. It seems like it's been helping you so much! Happy Tuesday Pretty Lady ♥

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  40. I love these tips! I have often wondered how you do it all! I have to download Wunderlist! I am a planner girl but need something on my phone!

    xo
    Annie

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  41. Wunderlist is great for me when I'm on the go. Since I work best from paper, I take my to dos and plot them out on my paper planner so my week is planned out. My exercise is planned out that way too.

    I also section out my notebooks so I'm only carrying one, all the time, and all of my roles are in there.

    I need to set aside a time to answer blog emails, I've been falling 2-3 days behind and it makes me feel uneasy.

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  42. I love being organised, it makes me feel so put together. But I'll for sure be taking your tips on board, they're great ♥

    tipscapsule.blogspot.com

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  43. Being a mom and blogger, I am SO all over the place with my time management! My schedule revolves around Brody's day... but these tips are so handy in reminding me that I should set tasks and stick to them! Thanks girl!! PS never heard of Wonderlist! Need!

    Xox Dana Ivy // www.iadorewhatilove.com

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  44. Wunderlist is pretty slick!

    I rely heavily on Google Calendar and Evernote to stay organized- I have a running to-do list, plus running grocery/errands lists in Evernote. It syncs to everything so I can see what's going on from my phone, home laptop, work computer, etc. So handy!

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

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  45. I've been really wanting to try Wunderlist but can't seem to part with my love affair for stationary :) I can always use more organization though! Thanks for the tips!

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  46. Great tips. I cannot believe you're down to two notebooks!! Training must have REALLY had an effect on you!! ;) Make today work, Rachel -CubicleCouture

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  47. This is great! Thanks for sharing!
    xx
    Mademoiselle Coconath
    http://mllecoconath.com

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  48. Great tips! My ex and I used wunderlist to track all the restaurants we wanted to tackle trying and also as a shared grocery list when we hosted parties, it was the best!

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  49. These are all amazing tips, Biana! I personally love to write things down, for some reason it sticks to my memory longer. So I have my Happy Planner for that I have sectioned and I also have a notebook strictly for blogging and YouTube. I will have to look into this for sure though...especially when I am not carrying my notebooks.
    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

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    Replies
    1. PS - How do you find time to visit everyones blog!? You're a busy gal! I know you said you reply to blog emails during commutes...is that when you visit blogs? Do you use the Bloglovin app?

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  50. Such great tips! I need to get more organized! I need to check out that wunderlist!

    <3 Shannon
    Upbeat Soles

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  51. Planning, organizing and staying on task is key! I am impressed with all of your roles.

    Lisa
    Daily Style Finds

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  52. thank you for this. this is such a great help

    http://notjessfashion.com/sense-of-simplicity

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  53. Awesome post! I love everything about organization and most of the time I'm pretty on-point there, but I have to confess that lately my inbox has been getting out of control. I've been avoiding even looking at some of my inboxes the way people in debt avoid looking at their bank balance. I just don't want to answer them! Today I'm taking the time to get back to them all though, and hopefully I won't let it get out of hang again!

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  54. Love this! I use the List Master app on my phone for grocery lists, gift lists, wish lists, bucket lists, etc. and I LOVE IT. Then I use my paper planner for my every day stuff. As a matter of fact, I did a post on time management waaaaay back when I first started blogging, to share all of my tips and tricks, and I had promised to do a more in depth post about List Master, but I never did it. Thanks for reminding me! Woops!

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  55. These are really great tips! I cannot live without my email organization and I love taking classes at the office as well for the same reasons! Oh, and if I lost my planner and notebook I would be lost in life. :) XO

    Anna || A Lily Love Affair

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  56. I'm all about staying organized which is mainly done through an old school planner and my iPhone calendar and notes but wunderlist could probably help consolidate all of these things. I similarly like to organize my inbox with separate folders such as travel, purchases, career, medical, etc.

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  57. Definitely will be checking out Wunderlist. I always start the year, month, week etc all motivated and organized then once I lose it I give up.

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  58. This was a fantastic post! I definitely am checking out that app - it seems life-changing!

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  59. I never heard of Wunderlist but it sounds amazing! Especially for the list maker organization obsessed person - aka me! :) I'm constantly writing lists on paper or putting notes in my phone which doesn't really keep me organized it more so just keeps me from forgetting. :)

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  60. the touch it once thing is brilliant. i really need to do that more, i am kind of okay with personal emails (although i do get behind sometimes but for the most part i only touch them once... just sometimes a week late lol) but i'm horrible at work emails because i think oh okay i'll do that later. but i really need to do it straight away haha.
    wunderlist really sounds handy, love that you can use it for different things like purchases and specific to do lists and specific roles. i am the worst with notebooks because i like having one for different things, but that idea of 50 pages each is brilliant. great post B!

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  61. With as busy as you are, this is awesome and I'm so glad it works for you! I need to do the "one touch" rule for email and I know that would alleviate so much of my anxiety about things left undone. Thanks for such a great post, lady!

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  62. Great tips!

    http://carinazz.blogspot.com.ee/

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  63. I love this post! I need to be better about the one-touch rule, that way it will eliminate time and anxiety later!

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  64. I have heard others gushing over Wunderlist and I thought to myself, do I really need that? Would I even use it. I think that you probably have described it best out of anyone I have read so far. We all have so many things that we are trying to accomplish in different aspects of our lives, it is definitely a good idea to have it all organized somewhere! I have an ever going notes on my phone of things and I write things down in a notebook. I ditched my planner already this year though, surprise surprise. I knew when i got it that it wasn't the right one for me!

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  65. This is great! Def need to check out Wunderlist!

    Heidi || Wishes & Reality

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  66. I always have it open on my computer, and I love that I can have the same thing on my phone. I LOVE paper lists, but having that many paper lists can just be so confusing and just add to clutter. It's nice being able to have as many lists as you need right in one place!

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  67. What a great way to stay organized! I need to check this out :)

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  68. Great post...and definitely helpful. I'd love to say I'm super organized, but I am faaaar from it! I've tried multiple list apps, but this one sounds just different enough that it might actually work. Downloading now :)

    Shannon
    Clothes & Quotes

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  69. I love any possible way to stay organized better! I definitely need to check this out!

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  70. Great tips!! For now, my to-do lists consist of the notes & reminders apps on my iPhone and eventually need to try something like this.

    xo, Kristina
    Medicine & Manicures

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  71. Wow, these are such great tips. I really need to pin this. I'm so disorganized!!

    xx Leah / www.eatpraywearlove.com

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  72. These are some amazing tips and ways to keep all of your "roles" in one place but able to distinguish between them. I want to check it out.

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  73. I'm extremely organized with my full-time job but not so much with the blog and my personal life. I'm going to have to check this out! Thanks for sharing your amazing tips!

    Jill
    Doused In Pink

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  74. Great tips! Wunderlist has definitely helped my planning! I am working on condensing all my notebooks and planners, too! xo, Champagne&Suburbs

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  75. I'm loving learning about WUnderlist since you got me started! Have you added the Wunderlist to your google toolbar? That has seriously been awesome for adding items to gift ideas, travel plans, etc. I just click that little icon and choose which folder to add it to!! I'm still working on figuring out the best folder titles.

    Shelly||The Queen in Between

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  76. I'm going to have to check out Wunderlust. I'm old school and write in a calendar, planner and checklists. I feel like once I write it down I can release it from my brain. I sound crazy!!

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