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Episode 109: The Psychology Behind Organizational Challenges

Brief summary of show:

Are you tired of feeling overwhelmed by clutter and chaos?

Why is it that some people seem so organized, when maybe you feel like you’re struggling to keep up?

In this episode of the Natalie Tysdal Podcast, I dive deep into the challenges of staying organized and share powerful insights on why it can feel so hard.

From the fear of letting go to the impact of mental health, I explore the root causes of disorganization and procrastination. I also share my practical strategies for putting systems in place and overcoming a lack of self-discipline.

Tune in to discover the secrets to staying organized and reclaim control over your life.

Listen in as we talk about:

  • [1:50] Why staying organized can feel hard

  • [2:30] Lack of prioritization

  • [3:35] The fear of letting go

  • [4:35] Why we procrastinate

  • [5:55] How to put systems in place

  • [8:20] Is there a lack of self-discipline?

  • [9:25] How mental health impacts staying organized

Notes from Natalie:

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View Transcript for this Episode

Natalie: Why are you struggling with organization plus practical strategies for overcoming common obstacles to a more streamlined and efficient lifestyle? It's today on the podcast.

Natalie: Hi, friends. Thanks so much for tuning in today and for following along. Let me ask you something. Do you ever feel like you are drowning in a sea of clutter and chaos? Struggling to stay organized amidst the demands of a busy life? As women, we often wear multiple hats. We juggle so many responsibilities, making it easy to lose track of things and to fall behind.

But why do we struggle so much? To stay organized and what can we do about it? In today's episode, I'm gonna delve into the psychology behind organizational challenges, and I wanna give you some practical solutions for conquering clutter and staying on top of your busy life.

Do me a really quick favor and hit subscribe wherever you listen to the podcast so you don't miss anything. And go to my website, natalie, where you will find blogs and other podcasts and information that I hope will enhance and help your life. Okay. If you're tired of feeling overwhelmed, you're ready to take control of your environment and your schedule.

Let's get started today. Staying organized. It can be a challenge for many people, even those who value organization and think that they are organized and some who strive to be more organized in their daily lives are always looking for new ways to stay on top of it and to be more productive. One thing I have learned is that organization and structure, it is not a sign of intelligence.

Quite the opposite. Some of the most brilliant people I know lack structure. It's the way their brains work. While some people seem. To effortlessly keep their lives in order. Others are struggling to maintain even the most basic of systems.

There are several reasons why staying organized is hard for people.

I've done the research, so let's talk about that. Number one, lack of prioritization. One of the main reasons why staying organized is hard for some people is they don't prioritize tasks. When everything feels important, it's difficult to know where to begin. Do you relate to that? I talked a few weeks ago on the podcast about juggling different types of balls, rubber balls and glass balls, and you have to be able to identify where those glass balls are so that you can keep those in the air.

And then just let the other, the other balls just kind of bounce along until you can get to them. But trying to keep all of them in the air at the same time, I promise you that's going to be hard and you're gonna go crazy. So where to begin Without a clear sense of priorities, it's easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer volume of tasks and responsibilities So you have to be able to clearly identify what is most important in that moment, maybe for that day or for that week, but to identify it, maybe circle it, give it a color on your to-do list, whatever it is, clearly identify those things. Another thing that many people struggle with is a fear of letting go People often hold onto items even when they're no longer useful or necessary because they fear that they might need those things in the future. Do you relate to this? The fear of letting go? You know what? It can lead to clutter, making it difficult to find what you need when you actually need it. And when it comes to clutter, remember?

Everything needs a home. So in your own house, your dishes, your clothing, your paperwork, your cup, your pencils, I'm looking around at my office, all of those things. If they have a place where they live permanently, then they don't just get thrown around and they don't lead to clutter. So, Think about that when you see things sitting around, where is that item's home?

I tell my kids that in when they're cleaning their room, like, why is that in the middle of the room? Doesn't it have a home in your room? Then it doesn't lead to that feeling of chaos, which is unsettling. Procrastination is another reason why staying organized is hard for some people. Believe me, I have struggled with this and many people around me have struggled with this idea and this feeling, this notion of procrastination. Often we don't even know that we do it. We do it for so many different reasons. Putting off tasks, especially when they're hard tasks and putting off responsibilities, even hard responsibilities that can create a backlog.

A backlog of work that can quickly become overwhelming. Procrastination also leads to a lack of motivation, making it difficult to start or complete tasks that require effort and focus. My mom used to say that motivation doesn't come first. You have to jump in. You have to start it before you actually get motivation.

Natalie: Lack of systems. Having a system in place that is crucial for staying organized without clear systems for managing tasks, managing appointments, information, it's easy to lose track of things if you don't have systems. A lack of systems can also lead to duplication of your effort and. A simple waste of time and who has time to waste any time.

I know I don't. A few of the systems I wanna give you today that I have found to be useful in getting organized and running my own business and teaching and running a home. Well, here are a few. Maybe they can help you if you're not already using them. One Trello. This is an online project management platform.

I use it at home. I use it for this. Podcast. I use it as a high school teacher and I even use it for fun things like my goals and dreams. I share a Trello board, uh, with various people in my family where we can just keep things. You could keep a Christmas list on there. You can do lots of things. It's pretty simple.

It's basically an online list making system, but there are some fun upgrades. It's free. Really important to know that, but there's also an app, which means that I can use it when I'm waiting in the carpool line or when I just need to make a quick update to one of my Trello boards, and I'll put a link to Trello in the show notes here.

If it's something that you wanna try out for your own systems. Another system I use for staying organized is Calendly. . I put my podcast openings each week for scheduling and guests. They book their online in Calendly, so this is key for me to save time and for automated responses.

The word automated, especially in today's world, really makes things easier. It allows for so much help for me, so the same email goes out with links, tips for the recording, reminder emails the night before our recordings, even a thank you, that email goes out automatically to my guests so I don't have to remember what to send them the night before.

The day of all the tips and tricks. It's just automatically in that system. It's a huge help, a huge time saver. So find ways to automate your systems and your life so that it saves you time. I also wanna mention systems. Think of them like guardrails on the road.

They keep us from danger. They keep us from being unorganized. All right, next. This is a tough one I know. Just buckle in for this one. Lack of self-discipline. You know, self-discipline is another important factor in staying organized. It just is. When we lack it, we're more likely to give into distractions and procrastination.

It can lead to a lack of focus, lack of productivity, which of course makes it difficult to stay on top of tasks and responsibilities. So, Maybe if you struggle with this, and I think at different times in our lives, we all struggle with this. Start small. How much easier do you think it would be if you got up just 10 minutes earlier each day?

I know it's easier to hit the snooze button, but remind yourself I need some discipline. 10 minutes. It's just 10 minutes. Get up 10 minutes earlier than maybe the next day, 20 minutes. And in a week you could be getting up an hour earlier without that much change, and you're gonna be so proud of yourself and your self-discipline if you do it.

Self-discipline will pay off in spades, and you will start to see that you're able to do more than you ever thought possible. And I wanna acknowledge something really important in my next tip. Anxiety, depression, a D H D. These can also make it really difficult to stay organized. These conditions can affect your focus, your motivation.

They can affect your energy levels, they can make it really hard to keep up with the demands of daily life. But I want to encourage you, there are ways to help yourself if you know you're struggling with these things, whatever you do. Don't tell yourself that you simply can't be organized because it's the way your brain was built.

You can do things and there are a lot of resources that can help you. If you struggle with anxiety or if you have a D D or A D H D,

If you know where you struggle and what distracts you. Eliminate those things. Maybe it's your phone. I am guilty of that. I know it distracts me. I, and I don't, I don't deny that. I actually am very well aware of it, and when I get on my phone and I start getting distracted, I have to pull myself back. I know for myself that I keep my organizational systems on my phone, so I have to be really careful because I'm likely to get distracted when I pick up my phone to say, use my cello board.

And I get a notification and all of a sudden I've forgotten why I went to my phone in the first place. Anyone else relate to that? Because I think it happens to a lot of us when so much of our organizational systems are held in that little box that we hold in our hand that dings every 30 seconds.

Here's another tip. I use a timer. Yes. Sometimes I use my phone, but sometimes I also just use an old-fashioned kitchen timer, and I set it for 30 minutes. Because in 30 minutes you can get so much done if you eliminate all other distractions. So turn off notifications, turn off anything on your computer or your phone that might make a sound, and give yourself that 30 minute clock to accomplish a big task.

All right, so I hope that the ideas I have given you help you and have given you a few ideas for getting organized and maybe staying motivated. Of course, my goal is to help you feel good to inspire you each week here on the podcast. And don't think for a minute that I think I'm perfect with any of these things.

I write all of these things. Because they're things I struggle with as well, but I have found ways to stay on top of them. Staying organized, it certainly can be a challenge for many reasons, including lack of prioritization, fear of letting go, procrastination, lack of systems, lack of self-discipline, and sometimes mental health issues as well.

But that is a normal part of life. You are not alone, my friend. Understanding these obstacles, finding ways to overcome them, that can certainly help people become more organized and productive. Please reach out if you have any questions or ideas for the podcast. Let's make this month all about goals.

Let's stay hyper organized and motivated. I'm here with you. I wanna be helpful. Have a great week, and I'm so happy to have you along for this podcast and for life. Talk to you next week.

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