How Goals Can Be a Powerful Tool for Getting Organized
Psychology is the study of the mind, and it is an areafull of different theories and ideas! Some of these are very complex, but there are some basic concepts you can grasp to help you understand why you are the way you are.
Philosophers have long argued whether the mind controls the body or the body controls the mind. And then there’s the brain, the house where the mind lives! Our brains are incredible andthey actually have superhuman cells too!
While we may not know everything about our brains and minds, we know that they are constantly growing and adaptingas we learn new things, and we know we can train them. In fact, some people have trained their mindto do extraordinary things, like survive extreme temperatures.
But if we don’t look after our minds chaos can ensue! It’s important we keep our mental health strong and look after our minds, and there are many ways you can do this. Read on for some tips to keep your mind strong!
First things first, if you want to get organized, you have to know what you are organizing yourself for. This means knowing what success will look like for you. Your goals may not be the same as the ones everyone else chooses, and that’s fine, they are your goals. The best way to set goals is to think SMART:
The idea behind SMART goals is that you are, firstly, going to specify what exactly you want to do. It needs to be something you can measure, so you’ll know when you have achieved it or how much more you have to do. As for attainable and reasonable, these two mean your goals are things you can realistically do with the resources and skills you currently have. Time-based refers to the fact that you have to set yourself a timeframe in which to achieve these goals. Goals are important because they give you something to aim for. Once you have set them,you can start achieving them.
When thinking about goals, consider what succeeding means to you. Once you know this, you can start planning how to get there.
In order to be organized and have a productive routine you need to plan. This requires reflection. Take note of what you are currently doing. What’s working and what isn’t? It can be helpful to keep a journal of daily activities; when you got up, what you did in your down time, and at work (pro tip: you can use your journal to track progress toward your goals!).
Planning is important because it helps us seewhat we need to do. When it comes to daily planning, to-do lists are your friend! When you make your list of things to do, you can divide it into things you absolutely need to do, things you would benefit from doing, and extra things that would be nice to do. This way you will have a clear visual that shows you how many things you have to do and how you should prioritize them. Now that that’s done, you can work the list items into your schedule. Remember one of the words in SMART goals: specific. If you don’t give yourself a specific time to do things, you will put it off and then end up with loads of things to do at the end of the day! Having a plan and sticking to it is a key part of being organized.
Active Routines are Productive Routines
If you want to be organized, you need a routine. And a key part of your routine should be staying active! Why? Because people who get up earlier and stay active throughout the dayhave higher cognitive health! Once you know what your goals are, you can start forming a productive routine. And the way to build a good routine is to form healthy habits!
To form healthy habits, you may need tobreak up with bad ones! That is similar to goal setting in that it involves looking at what you are currently doing and how you can improve it. Sometimes we form bad habits without even realizing it. Take a look at things you are doing that are destructive and unhelpful and see how you can change them. Then you can start to build good habits. Here are five healthy habits to include to create a solid routine for yourself:
Eating right: What we put into our body fuels us for the day. Make sure you’re getting a good mix of minerals, vitamins, proteins, fiber, and carbohydrates.
Water: We need to stay hydrated. Every bit of our body needs water to function, so make sure you drink enough water.
Exercise: It doesn’t have to be intense, but a healthy routine involves getting moving. Do some light exercise throughout your day.
Get up early: It does wonders! An early start to the day sets you up for a great day overall, so get out of bed and get moving!
Review and reflect: If we don’t reflect on what we are doing we won’t know what’s working and what’s not. So, keep track of your progress and ask yourself which parts of your routine are working, and which aren’t.
As well as all this, remember to include some down time. Breaks are important and part of your schedule should include time to rest!
The Power of Positivity!
It may sound like fanciful thinking, but being positive really does help! Try includingself-affirmations into your routine. These are positive phrases you say to yourself to increase your self-esteem. Part of your routine needs to be reminding yourself you’re doing your best. Make it a part of your routine to think positively! Those early mornings are an especially good time to use self-affirmations.
Psychology of a Winner!
One way we are all the same is that we are all affected by our childhood. We have positive and negative traits because of experiences we have had growing up, whether it was at home, in school, or in our social lives. There is a whole area of psychology, known as developmental psychology, that looks at different stages of personal growth through childhood.
No matter what, we have all had some bad experiences growing up, and without realizing it, these experiences shaped our biases, anxieties, fears, and personalities. But the truth is, we never stop growing, and despite things not having been perfect growing up, these experiences can help you gain an understanding of yourself to live a more fulfilling life.
When it comes to who we are, psychology tells us that we have atrue self and a false self, and these can factor into our personal growth. A big step when it comes to personal growth is moving toward being your true self. You may be thinking “of course I’m my true self! I’m an honest person!” but the idea of the true self is different than that, and, unfortunately, the false self can influence much more of our behavior and personal growth than the true self sometimes. The false self is basically who we pretend to be to give a good impression to others.
In our younger years, we often imitated the behavior of others around us, be it our parents, siblings, or even our friends. The thing is, without realizing it, we continue to live as our false self, the person developed from those intimidated behaviors, into adulthood. We still try to fit in because we think we are supposed to. But not living as your true self doesa lot of harm in the long run. If you’re not being true to yourself, you will come to regret it. Life goes by fast, and you can’t get back the time you missed. It’s worth being the person you want to be while you still can.
Part of life is accepting the ups and downs. When we think of things, people, or experiences as either entirely good or entirely bad, we’re practicing the concept known as splitting. The reality is most things come with good parts and bad parts. It’s a big step in growth to accept that nothing is perfect but still has positives!
If you get these things clear, your mind becomes clearer, and you can focus on the important things!
Sometimes, to succeed, we need a little bit of help. It doesn’t make you a failure if you have to get a little extra support through therapy or from a support group. A lot of us deal with some kind of trauma or grief throughout the years and we don’t know exactly how to handle it. Sometimes we deal with complex trauma, which is when something bad happens before we have fully processed a previous traumatic experience. We all go through a patch where we just need that little bit of extra help—and that’s okay!
If you do find you need some support, you can always try cognitive behavioral therapy to look at the way you think, occupational therapy to help you really get organized, or just good old fashioned talking therapy.
But maybe you don’t feel like you need or want formal help. That’s okay too. Try reaching out to a friend, family member, or a colleague you trust. People can’t support you if you don’t talk to them. Let them know what you’re struggling with. Trust us when we say you’ll feel a weight off your shoulders. As they say, a problem shared is a problem halved.
So, what can we take away from this? Organization is key! Plan your days, get into a good routine, get support when and where you need it, and before you know it, you’ll be learning to be your true self and having a great life!
About The Author
NeuroGym Team: NeuroGym’s Team of experts consists of neuroscientists, researchers, and staff who are enthusiasts in their fields. The team is committed to making a difference in the lives of others by sharing the latest scientific findings to help you change your life by understanding and using the mindset, skill set and action set to change your brain.
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