First of all, let me make this abundantly clear: I almost never feel like I have my sh*t together. In fact, that’s kind of the whole reason I wanted to write about all the little ways you can feel like your life is together in the first place. So if you’re struggling to feel like your life is in order, too, know that I’m right there with you.
I’ve moved three times in the past year, my car is messy AF right now, I currently don’t have health insurance, and I haven’t done laundry in over a week. So, yeah, my life’s not super together at this moment, and it doesn't feel awesome. That said, I’ve learned over the past few years that no matter how stressful life gets, and no matter how much of a hot mess you may feel like, it's always comforting (and self-esteem boosting) to have go-to methods for feeling like your life is in order.
Of course, everyone’s idea of what it means to have your sh*t together is a little bit different. Ultimately, if you're paying your bills and taking care of yourself, then you're probably doing much better than you think you are. That said, some people (like myself) need to keep their homes and workspaces clean to avoid feeling like they’re failing at life. Other people thrive in messy chaos, and some fall somewhere in the middle. Regardless of where you find yourself on the cleanliness scale, though, I think we could all use a little help when it comes to adulting. So here’s 17 small ways to feel like your life’s in order.
1. Stop Hitting Snooze
I'm really bad at getting out of bed when I'm supposed to. Hell, this morning I hit snooze from 5:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m., so I may be the actual the worst. That said, going forward, I'm definitely going to try harder to lay off the snooze button, because hitting snooze is bad for our health and our motivation.
As Alan Henry put it for Lifehacker, "After you hit snooze and drift off, your brain starts its sleep cycle all over again. When the alarm goes off a second time, you're likely at an even deeper, earlier part of your sleep cycle, which results in you feeling even worse than you did the first time." So, yeah, enough with the snooze button already.
2. Buy A Friggin’ Key Holder & Hang Your Keys On It
Forgetting where you put your keys isn't a huge deal, because everyone does it — but it's annoying AF, it will make you late to important things, and it's just not very responsible. So before you misplace your keys again, buy (or build) a key rack, hang it by your door, and put your damn keys on it. Or, check out some of these helpful gadgets for forgetful folks.
3. Keep Your Living Space Tidy
Obviously, you should never feel like your place has to be Monica Gellar-level-clean. (Because, really, whose is?) That said, I think even the messiest of us would agree that having a fairly tidy living space to chill out in can really help you feel more like a successful adult. Plus, if you work remotely or have any kind of anxiety issues, a messy living space will only make your life harder. So don't underestimate the power of a clean kitchen, and maybe don't leave your shoes where you can easily trip over them.
4. ... Or, At The Very Least, Make Your Dang Bed
I get it. There are going to be some workweeks where your life is so crazy busy that keeping your place clean just won't matter. But even during those times, though, you should still try to set aside time to make your bed in the morning. Unless you take bed-making super seriously, it should only take you, like, a whopping 30 seconds at most, and it will probably help you feel more like a grown up.
5. Purge Your Inbox & Unsubscribe From The Emails You're Sick Of Seeing
Unless you're the one person alive today who doesn't check their email daily, you're probably sick of seeing hundreds of useless emails flooding your inbox on a daily basis. So instead of continuing to live in dread of your Gmail account, set aside an hour or two of your next day off to clean out your inbox. Start by deleting the read messages that you no longer need, then unsubscribe from all the junk mail that you loathe. It probably won't be fun, but you'll feel awesome when it's done.
6. Drink More Water
Everyone knows that drinking water is crucial to our overall health and wellbeing — so if you're not drinking enough of it, changing that habit is one super easy way to feel better about yourself and your life. As Bustle reported last summer, four to six eight ounce glasses a day is ideal, so shoot for at least four — and toss some fruit in your Brita pitcher for added flavor, if you think that will incentivize you to drink more of the stuff.
7. Take A Walk
Exercise is almost never a bad idea, and since doing anything to improve your physical and mental health is super productive, taking frequent walks is one small way to feel like you're doing life right. Plus, not only is walking good for your body — walking in nature has been proven to cut down on negative thinking, anxiety, and depressive symptoms.
8. Limit Your Social Media Intake
Social media can be a great way to keep in touch with loved ones, and depending on what kind of job you work, social media can really benefit your career, too. That said, the more time you spend on social media, the more you're going to compare your life to the seemingly perfect lives of others. So if you want to feel better about your life, try to keep your Facebook and Instagram scrolling to a minimum.
Look, I'm not saying you need to floss every time you eat — not only because that's probably not realistic, but because it turns out that flossing after every meal might not be as necessary as our childhood dentists wanted us to believe. This doesn't mean flossing isn't important, though, because it is. Plus, if you're anything like me, flossing probably makes you feel like a self-care champion.
10. Write Stuff Down
Forgetting appointments, tracking numbers for packages, friend dates, actual dates, and deadlines will not help you feel like your sh*t is together. So whether you prefer to keep track of important organizational information on your phone, or you're old school enough that you still use day planners, start taking the time to document it all.
11. Take Care Of Your Skin
I'm not suggesting that you should go out and buy a whole bunch of expensive skincare products just so you can feel like you're a well-adjusted adult. (Though if you're inclined and if you can afford it, go for it!) Taking good care of your skin can be an easy way to feel better about yourself, though — so if you haven't already found a skincare routine you can easily stick to, then it's time to change that. Here's some advice to get you started.
12. Cook More
Trust me, I know how much easier (and sometimes tastier) it is to eat out than it is to eat at home. In the long-run, though, cooking is healthier, cheaper, and it can even be therapeutic. So the next time you find yourself reaching for your take-out menu drawer, check out some of these easy recipes instead.
13. Shower When You Wake Up
There really is no universally perfect time to take a shower, because personal grooming isn't exactly a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. However, showering when you wake up is a super soothing way to start your day. On top of that, if you shower first thing in the morning, then no matter how crazy your day gets, at least you'll be clean.
14. Keep Your Car As Trash-Free As Possible
I'm not saying keeping your car free of Taco Bell receipts will automatically mean you have your life in order, but a clean and organized car sure can help you feel like your sh*t's together. So instead of continuing to use your passenger's side floorboard like a dumpster, keep a trash bag in your car for easy clean-up. And maybe toss a hand vacuum in there, too.
15. Start Leaving Earlier For Things
Maybe punctuality isn't a problem for you, but if it is, then leaving even 10 minutes earlier than you think you need to for appointments, work, and hang-outs will most likely work wonders for your promptness. At least, it has for me.
16. Keep Lip Balm Everywhere
Because chapped lips are the worst, and lip balm is probably even easier to misplace than your keys.
17. Trade Your Big Purse In For A Small One
If you're sick of feeling like you're going on a deep-sea expedition every time you need to fish a tampon or a piece of gum out of the depths of your purse, try switching to a smaller one. In my experience, it's just a whole lot harder to clutter up a hand bag when it only has room for your money, lip balm, and keys.