The Caregiver's Journey

Planning and Organization

Organization and planning skills are often affected by TBI. These skills improve over time. The healthcare team will work with your family member to develop better organization and planning skills.

You may need to remind your family member again and again to use the skills he or she learns in therapy until they become a habit.

What you might see:

  • Problems organizing time to get things done 
  • Problems understanding which tools are needed to complete a task and getting them together 
  • Problems breaking down complex tasks into smaller steps 
  • Having a hard time getting ready for work, school, and appointments 
  • Being late for appointments and work or school 
  • Having a hard time starting a task 
  • Problems making plans and completing them 
  • Problems setting goals 
  • Trouble prioritizing 
  • Looking disorganized

How you can help:

  • Begin with small, realistic tasks.
  • Work with your family member to get organized at home. Keep a family calendar posted on a wall. Use reminder notes and cue cards.
  • Have a place for everything and keep everything in its place. In particular, keep your service member/veteran’s belongings in certain places.
  • Turn off the radio/TV or other distractions when tasks need to be done.
  • Use memory aids, such as calendars and notebooks, to plan, write down, and check off tasks when done.
  • Use a tote bag or backpack to organize needed items for the day.
  • Work with your service member/veteran to decide which information or activity has the highest priority.