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Learning to Organize as a Young Adult

It is common for young adults to struggle with organization, and there are many reasons why you may struggle with it. However, as a young adult, learning to organize yourself can make a big difference in your success in college, a career, and caring for your needs. Northwest College Support believes that organization is a skill. This means that even if you feel that you are bad at it, you can learn how to improve the skills of being organized over time. With practice and support, you can get organized and feel on top of your schedule, no matter where life takes you.

Challenges of Being Organized as a Young Adult

Executive functions are mental processes that help you concentrate, think through problems, manage your time, and organize yourself. These skills are different from others because they play a role in everything that you do. However, as a young adult, you may struggle with the executive function of being organized.

There are many reasons why it is challenging to be organized. First, as you transition into adulthood there is significantly more organization that is required of you. This is because your parents and teachers will do less of the organizing and you will need to do it instead. Additionally, organization may be particularly challenging if you struggle with your mental health. While your mental health is unique to you, many mental health disorders make it more difficult to problem-solve and organize. If this is something you struggle with, it is ok.

Improving Organization as a Young Adult

Regardless of why you struggle with organization, you can improve. By taking the time to practice, taking it one step at a time, and finding a way to organize that you like, you can build the skill of being organized in a way that is more likely to stick with you.


Like any skill, the often to improve is through practice. However, you may wonder what it looks like to practice being organized. Practicing organization starts with taking the time to create an organizational system. For example, imagine a drawer full of clothes. If you tend to just grab something out and throw it back, the drawer will look like a messy pile of clothes.

However, you can pull it all out, put it in dividers, decide what goes where, fold the clothes, and put them away. Once you have a system, practice comes in the form of coming back to your system. Therefore, if every time you wash your clothes, you fold them and put them in the appropriate places, you are practicing being organized.

While this example may or may not apply to you, the concept can work with many different things. This can include making and following a schedule. However, it may also include organizing grocery shopping or self-care tasks.

One Step at a Time

The idea of having different organizational systems in place may seem overwhelming. If it does, that is ok. It will help to break it down and take it one step at a time. This makes each step manageable.

Taking it one step at a time will look different for you than it does for others. Therefore, it starts with deciding what you want to organize first. Try choosing something that feels manageable to you. Then, create a system that feels like it will be helpful. Remember, you can always change it in the future.

Find a System That Works for You

When thinking about organization, you may already know some ways to organize yourself. However, as a young adult, it is time for you to create systems that are really going to work for you. This is very important, both for now and later. When you have a way to organize that works for you, you are more likely to come back to it. Therefore, you are more likely to stay organized longer.

Finding a system that works for you will take time. That is normal. Additionally, you may need to adjust your organization when things change. For example, a science course in college will likely require a different and unique organization when compared to a literature course.

Importance of Organization as a Young Adult

Learning to organize is extremely important. Northwest College Support believes that while being bright is helpful, it is not enough to be successful in college. Your ability to organize keeps you on track. This will be true in college and whatever you choose to do after you finish. Being organized will help you to finish your work, get to class, and reduce stress levels. All of this is vital when you are working towards completing a college degree, finishing a specific course, or simply wanting to thrive as a young adult.

Many young adults struggle with organization. If you struggle with executive functioning, being organized may be even more difficult. However, you can learn to improve your organizational skills. This will help you to be successful in college and whatever else you choose to do. At Northwest Colege Support, we understand that transitioning into adulthood is not an easy step. Our programs are designed to help students learn and practice new skills like organization. We offer a unique blend of structure and freedom for each student to truly build skills and incorporate them into their lives in an authentic way that will last. To learn more about our program, call (877) 485-2776 today.

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