Your cart

Your cart is empty

How To Get Organized in 2020

Words by Marléna Ahearn
Photos by Julia Merrell


One of the best ways to start the new year is to get organized. Once you’re organized you can do anything you set your mind to! The trick is finding a method that works for you: Are you more of a visual planner? Do you need something to sync everywhere so you always know what’s coming next? 

To help you find your perfect tools to get organized for 2020, three Rochester Brainery teachers share their favorite ways to stay on track. 


Multiple Methods Leads To Super Organization: Debbie Waidl

Staying and being organized is one of my specialties. I am the person that gets excited to go to any office supply store. I can spend hours looking for the best calendar each year. Right now I am using Tools4Wisdom and I love it!

I also keep an online calendar with Cozi which I LOVE and have been using for over 5 years. I find using both keeps me on track.  I still like to cross things off when I accomplish them, but really love the ease of a digital platform. For the client end of my business I use another platform to manage my business efficiently. For my business marketing, I use Synduit which is a fantastic tool for health professionals to utilize. 

To-do lists are my friends. I create them each week, updating every Sunday so I have a clear and concise plan of what I need to accomplish during the week. Using all these tools, my days are scheduled out so I always know what my priorities are, ensuring I don’t head down a rabbit hole on any given project.



Digital Planner: Cara Livermore

I use a combination of Apple Calendar, Notion and Get To Work Book to brainstorm, plan, and schedule. 

The calendar is just for a hard backup of all of my important event dates and recurring reminders. Notion is an amazingly flexible application for workspaces, keeping client info, note taking, and project planning — I wrote a more in-depth blog post about how I use it here. And the Get To Work Book planner is a place for me to write out my daily tasks, draw thumbnails for photoshoots, and get out anything I can’t do digitally. Together, they help wrangle all my freelancing, wedding photo business, teaching, and magazine work, as well as home and personal projects. I also heavily use Dropbox for clients, contributors, and sharing and storing files among all my devices.



The Bullet Journal Method: Mary Anne Shew

My favorite tool by far for managing life, work, hobbies, interests, plans is the Bullet Journal (“BuJo”) method. I started using it in early 2016 after being disappointed with so many other planners. Though I still use a digital calendar to manage appointments and events, I depend on my bullet journal—it’s the place where it all comes together and I have the full picture. Very little gets dropped or forgotten. Over time I’ve tweaked the process to fit my needs, which is very easy to do. To start your own bullet journal, either come to my bullet journal for beginners class at Rochester or visit the bullet journal website. I believe it is the best thing you could do to make 2020 your best year ever.

For more information to help you stay organized or just try something new, check out our available classes.

Previous post