A recent global study by the International Labour Office found that American workers are on the job longer than any other industrialized nation. The Business Insider reports that the United States is the fourth most technologically advanced country in the world. So, why are Americans working so much? A lot of that relates to organization. Simply being more organized can lower the amount of time spent at work, which will leave you more time to be with your friends and family, where organizational skills are just as important. Let’s look at some facts and statistics to see how organization affects your time spent at work, with friends, and family.
The Importance of Organization at Work
Organization at your place of employment is important for a few key reasons. Organization at work saves time and reduces stress. In fact, employees spend, according to Medium, two and a half hours a day looking for something they need at work. If you know where to find your important documents and supplies, you don’t have to spend time looking for them. Inc. states that the average employee searches for paper for four hours per week and that being disorganized at work adds to stress levels while reducing productivity and creative thinking. Organization also keeps you focused on your to-do list. A Princeton study confirms that a messy work environment is so distracting that people can’t focus on tasks on hand. Being organized isn’t limited to being particular with physical file folders, so be aware that keeping your digital files and emails properly organized on your work computer can save you a lot of time.
Being an organized person will help your relationships with co-workers and managers. Forbes contributor Jenna Goudreau found that out of 1,000 employees surveyed, 57 percent of people say that they judge their co-workers negatively if they have a messy desk. According to the Wall Street Journal,28 percent of employers say they are less likely to promote somebody if they have a cluttered desk. If you’re more organized, you will have more time to communicate with those around you. This increased opportunity to communicate can lead to better relationships at work and more efficient productivity as a result. Improved relationships at work often times means that your employees are bonding and making friends, which improves workplace happiness and a happy workforce is 12 percent more productive, according to a study at the University of Warwick in England. All it takes is a little more organization.
How Organization Affects Your Friendships
A lot of the same principles of being organized at work apply to spending time off. Having an active social life is important to your overall health. Psychology Today links social life to living longer and a decreased risk of dementia. But, there are many ways that being disorganized can negatively affect your friendships. For one thing, according to psychiatrist Sherrie Bourg Carter, clutter tends to distract and make you prone to anxiety, as having a messy house or apartment tricks the human brain into thinking that work is not finished. If you feel overwhelmed and anxious, you may not be pleasant to be around, which could indirectly affect your social life. Psychotherapist and professional organizer Cindy Glovinsky states that “order feels good, in part, because it’s easier for our brains to deal with and not have to work so hard.” While there are a lot of negative outside forces that we can’t help, being organized is something that most people are capable of, if they are willing.
Being organized also will help with your time management during time off. This will allow you to make time for your friends, as well as be punctual when meeting them, which will help keep your relationship on stable ground as nobody likes it when a friend is consistently late, according to Psychology Today.
Organization and Your Family
If you and your family’s house is in a state of disarray, the consequences could be severe. In fact, in a study by Indiana University, it was found that people who lived in a clean and organized space were healthier than those who lived in an unkempt area. Another study by the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin found that women who described their house as “cluttered” and full of unfinished projects were prone to depression. Situations like these can certainly lead to an unhappy family life. By finishing chores in a timely manner, you avoid a pile-up of tasks, which can lead to feeling overwhelmed and stressed. You also won’t have the nagging feeling of something unfinished hanging over your head. Getting these things done can lead to more quality time with your loved ones, which will promote bonding and relaxation.
Try to keep communication open within your family regarding what needs to be done and when so that organizing your home is not just one person’s responsibility. By delegating tasks and keeping a to-do list in a central area, like on the fridge, it will be easier for everyone to do their part. A simple list of tasks or a calendar are both great ways to delegate tasks without having to constantly remind family members part of their task. This will help prevent feelings of resentment and exhaustion, and it keeps the household running smoothly.
If you feel overworked and overwhelmed, or have trouble keeping up with your friends, you might need to work on your organizational skills. In doing so, you can save time at work, leaving you more time to spend with your friends and family. There are numerous resources out there if you need some help. Once you have your work and home organized, you won’t want to live your life any other way.