An Organized Life is a Happy Life when your mother would yell at you to clean up your room? I never understood why having a clean bedroom was so important to my mom. After entering college, and deciding I didn’t want to move back home and live in my parents’ basement for six months, I decided it was time to make a change and organize not only my room, but also my life.

The first step to fixing any problem is admitting you have one. Let’s all take a moment to admit that we are messy college students just trying to make it through the week only to be rewarded by a long much needed nap on Friday afternoon. Feel better? Me too. Now, assess your life. What goals do you have? Where do you see yourself in five years? Write it down and hang it on your wall. When you’re forced to look at your goals everyday, it inspires you to do better and work harder. Planning is just one element of getting organized. The next step is to actually clean up your life and keep it that way.

Invest in a planner. They may seem tedious, but once you get one you won’t know how you ever lived without it. If you’re the type of person that gets bored easily, use colored markers or stickers to make your daily tasks more exciting! Write down anything you think will help you reach the goals you have set for yourself. Your planner should become your best friend (figuratively, not literally) and guide you down the right path to landing your dream job.

Buy a calendar. Calendars are similar to planners, but they allow you to see the bigger picture. Write down deadlines for submitting applications, speaker events happening on campus and job fairs. Your calendar can also have fun events that allow you to unwind because even professionals take a break every now and then.

Work on your resume. Your resume can never be edited enough. There is always something that can be fixed and tweaked by you or a professor you trust. Your resume is the first thing a potential employer will see before they meet you. Make sure it reflects the true you and conveys the organized and dedicated person you are.

Talk to people. Ask your friends what they do to stay organized and how they are preparing for their futures. Ask you parents, too. Just because their advice may seem annoying at times does not mean it can’t help. After all, your parents are your biggest fans and want nothing but the best for you.

So, write things down, talk about your goals and stay focused. Organizing your life is just the first step to bigger and better things. Starting now, instead of the usual waiting until the last minute technique college students have perfected, will benefit you in the long run. So buy a planner, write on your calendar and ask for help because your future is up to you. All you have to do is prepare for it.

-Charnay Pickett