How do I become a more dependable, organized person? originally appeared on Quora - the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

If there are two words anyone would use to describe me, they would definitely be "dependable" and "organized." Here are ten tips I try to follow:

  1. Always do what you say you're going to do. If you commit to something, make a suggestion or make a plan -- always follow through! If you have trouble remembering things, write them down.
  2. Have one centrally located calendar. Add everything to it as it comes up -- don't wait! -- and refer to it regularly.
  3. When you have something you need to get done, make a list. Have a short-term list of things you need to do today, and a long-term list of things you'd like to get done soon. Don't leave things lingering on your list. If you have even one spare moment in your day, do something on that list. Even it if it's something like organizing photos of your second child who is now almost four and has zero printed baby pictures (it's one I've been working on for three and a half years now).
  4. Keep a regular routine. My husband and I, every Sunday night, write down our plans for the week. Day to day we try to keep the same schedule; we work out at the same times, we have regular working blocks of time throughout the week, etc.
  5. Allow for some flexibility. You can't plan every moment in your day, so leave some times where you are free to do what you love, read a book, or relax. It's important to take a break from being so organized because it can get overwhelming.
  6. Make time for your friends and family. I do set alarms in my phone to call/text/make plans with people. It's the only way I'll remember or have time to make people a priority when I have so many other things on my plate.
  7. Don't say yes to everything. Overextending yourself means you won't do anything really well. I only take on what I know I can give my full attention to.
  8. Be a leader. Don't wait for someone to make plans for you, clean up after you, or create happiness for you. Be a doer. Make things happen for yourself. Make plans. Tackle a big project. Plan a trip.
  9. Don't be afraid to speak up. Having an opinion and being able to express it shows people that you have ideas and aren't afraid to implement them.
  10. Keep your email inbox minimal. My inbox is my to do list. If it's in there, I still need it, when I finish it, I file it away or delete it. There's nothing more satisfying than a very short list in your inbox.

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