Every single year, getting organized holds a solid place of honor among most people's top 10 New Year's resolutions. At the start of every January, millions of people around the world resolve that this year is the year that they will finally get organized. But by the end of that month, many of those same people are running out of steam as they give up hope of reaching their organizing goals.

This may sound like your own life! If it does, you are not alone. And you're in good company thinking about your resolution ahead of time, because NOW is one of the best times of the year for you to take action for powerful organizing and achieve your resolution before New Year's even gets here. (Yes, during the holidays!)

The last week of the year can be extremely productive. Thanksgiving, Chanukah, Christmas and other holiday celebrations and commitments are past. The kids are often still out of school, so you've got free labor to help you out. And the extra workout of packing, carrying, cleaning and uncluttering will make you feel much better about those chunks of fudge and pie you kept sneaking during the last few weeks.

Here are seven year-end tasks to help organize your home and life and get a serious head start on your New Year's resolution.

1. End of the year financial projects. Now is the time to get all of your financial paperwork for the year completed and organize receipts so you're ready for tax time. Also, check to make sure that your savings and checking accounts are serving your needs and change them if necessary. Ditto for your retirement accounts and goal progression. Make adjustments to savings and withholding if needed.

2. Back-up all of your computers. If you already have a system, make sure that it is backing up your files regularly. If not, purchase a storage device or online service for just this purpose.

3. After you've backed up all your digital files, make sure that all of your photographs are organized as well. Sort them by date, occasion or with whatever system that works for you. If you keep photo albums, order prints from any occasions missing from the past year and get your photo albums done for the year.

4. Review beneficiary information on all investments and policies. If your family has grown or changed in the last year, now is the time to make sure your beneficiary information is current.

5. Review your insurance accounts for house, cars, life. Make sure that they are meeting your requirements and talk to your agent to adjust if you need to make changes.

6. Clean out the paper. Over the course of a year, most of us accumulate way more paper than we need, and much of it ends up in our files and drawers. Spend some time going through your files and drawers and see if the papers in there are still necessary and relevant to you.

7. Purchase a 2012 calendar. Use your 2011 calendar as a guide to note birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions on the new calendar. Place sticky notes on the months you need to schedule medical and dental checkups. Record appointments, school events, and recurring obligations.

Finish these simple organizing tasks and you'll find that after the toasts, the cheers and the goals of weight loss, romance and organizing are shared - you'll emerge ahead of the crowd when you declare yourself officially uncluttered for a fantastic New Year.

Author's Bio: 

Carmen Coker is a former U.S. Air Force officer turned professional organizer and productivity expert. She provides organizing resources for small business at www.OrganizedEntrepreneur.com and for home life at www.OrganizeClutterbugs.com