How to Be Organized: Tips for College Students

In college, you can choose two of the following: adequate sleep, a social life, and good grades. In my experience, this is largely true, but you can make your best attempt at success in all arenas if you stay organized.

First of all, make sure you invest in a good planner. If you prefer a physical planner, you need to weigh the size of the pages with the convenience factor of being able to carry it. For me, it’s worth it to carry a larger agenda around in order to ensure that I can write everything down. For example, I like there to be room for me to write a to-do list each day, as well as any appointments I might have. I also like to add in my favorite TV shows and self-improvement goals, such as a chart for how much water I’ve had each day and whether I’ve done my squats.


If you prefer a digital planner, there are several Android- and iOS-compatible apps available. Your smartphone likely comes with a native app that will remind you of tasks on command. Why not take it a step further and add Planner Pro, which lets you organize your daily calendar and task manager all from the same dashboard? Another app I recommend is Balanced. Balanced lets you schedule reminders to yourself about activities you consider important in order to be well-rounded. For example, you can schedule reminders to read a novel four times each week, call an old friend once every month, or any number of other options as well as creating your own. Regardless of the app you choose, it’s clear that if you prefer to go the digital route the best option is likely to download an array of apps to ensure you get all of the functionality and flexibility you need.

Another key behavior to achieving balance in your life is actually agreeing to partake in activities. When the school year starts, sign up for the mailing lists of any clubs you’re interested in, even if you’re concerned that you won’t have time to go. There’s no harm in receiving the meeting and activity schedule, and you can always graciously ask to be removed if it proves overwhelming. On the other hand, if you don’t sign up, you definitely won’t go.

Finally, it’s important to keep up with home organization. Whether you live in a dorm, an off-campus apartment, at home with your parents, or anywhere in between, you need to keep your space straight. Making sure your environment is clutter-free will help you organize your thoughts and activities. A great way to do this is to invest in containers of various sizes along with labels so you can always find everything you’re looking for.