Time Management, Productivity Tips Time management, productivity tips are intended to make the road to efficiency smooth and easy to navigate. Most people are productive but feel as if they should be getting even more done. In this article I suggest 5 things that you can stop doing because they either waste time or disrupt your focus and workflow. Read more… Time management, productivity tips #1: Stop answering every phone call Time management, productivity tip #1 is to avoid answering every phone call can be disruptive to your workflow as well as your personal time. Remember that your friends and family will understand that you have work to do. Try these time management, productivity tips: If it is not urgent you can take advantage of the benefits of technology and utilize caller ID and voicemail. If you know that talking to a specific person will take a longer than usual time, schedule the call and agree to a time limit. You can say something like, “I want to catch up (or discuss this) and only have XX number of minutes. I hope that works for your schedule, too.” Customize your voicemail message and tell callers when you will be available. “I am usually available between the hours of XX and XX. If you are not able to call then let me know a good time to reach you. If I am on another call I will return yours shortly. Thank you for your patience.” Remember, you do not need to leave a reason why. Then be sure to be available during those hours to receive and return calls. Time management, productivity tips #2: Stop writing long emails, text messages Time management, productivity tip #2 addresses the original intent of emails and text messages. That is, these were designed to be… read more →
Rainy day organizing projects | Closets Rainy day organizing projects | closets give you a sense of accomplishment. You can always schedule rainy day organizing projects even when it is not raining! You can organize by room but I suggest that you start small and declutter one closet at a time. Plan ahead so that you have uninterrupted time to declutter and re-organize. Most closets don’t need an entire do-over. It is a matter of taking the time to focus on the space using my “1-at-a-time rule“. When you declutter and organize 1 space at a time you are less likely to get overwhelmed more likely to feel a sense of accomplishment. Easy, step by step tips for rainy day organizing projects | Closets Avoid buying anything in advance. You will likely end up with unused bins, containers, and hangers after you purge. Make sure that you have enough bags and containers for trash, recycling, shredding, donations, items that you can resell, clothing that needs dry cleaning or alterations. Take everything out of the closet. Clean and vacuum the closet and shelves, oil the hinges, replace dead light bulbs, or add motion detector lighting to the closet. Make quick, easy decisions to let go of anything that you no longer need, want, or that is in good repair and cannot be fixed at a reasonable cost. Sort “like” items into piles. Set the items that don’t “belong” in that closet aside for now. You will find a different place for them to “live” after you finish re-organizing the closet that you are working on. Contain smaller items that need to stay together in bins, baskets and clear containers. Label containers, as needed. Store frequently used items in easy to reach, visible places. Whenever possible, store heavy items at eye level… read more →
Get something done | Time management tip Get something done. Always remember that you have to make the time to get something done, it’s just that simple. Time Management Tip: Wake up 15 minutes earlier than you usually do every day and plan to do something that you think you never have time to do. The other day I blogged about sleeping in for an extra 15 minutes every day, which is a challenge for early birds like me. For those of you who experience the opposite challenge I think that this particular time management tip is worth considering. You might be surprised at what you could do in just 15 minutes every day. Here are some ideas to spark your interest for what kinds of things you can get done with 15 “extra” minutes a day: Write, journal Draw, color Read Stretch, practice yoga or tai chi Meditate Give yourself a mini-facial Enjoy a cup of tea or coffee Take a quick walk, get on a treadmill, do sit ups or push ups Time Management | Get something done Get something done. I am not referring to things such as household chores or checking your email. The Outside In Approach to time management is about work-life balance that addresses self nurturing, self care, personal development, or simply whatever aspect of your life you think you are neglecting. As a Professional Organizer and Time Management Coach my tips and services are designed to assist you to streamline your schedule and your stuff. Declutter the things in your schedule that are wasting your time. It is similar to getting rid of clutter that wastes space. Both of these block the flow of energy and affect you in seen and unseen ways. Need help? Why don’t we try a session to get… read more →
The 50 benefits of organized people enjoy The 50 benefits of living your most organized life that I write about are only just the beginning! Organizing is a process of eliminating the things and the time wasters in your life. Clutter isn’t just too much stuff in your space, it’s also too much to do, and even too much to think about. The benefits of organizing result in eliminating the these things because they can cause stress and cost you your health and even your finances. Speaking as your Personal and Professional Organizer here are 5 more positive outcomes of organizing and productivity: Save time for important relationships and connections. Time saving strategies leave room in your weekly schedule for meaningful and self nurturing activities, especially your relationships at home and work. Boost your productivity in an energy efficient manner. Organizing and time management doesn’t mean working harder and longer. It means planning, streamlining, and producing excellent results by being efficient. Enhance your self esteem and sense of control. Wouldn’t you feel better by being more organized? Confidence comes from the inside out, and organizing from the outside in supports that confidence! Impact your credibility with others personally and professionally. Whether you are managing a family or an office staff, people are more inclined to respect and want to work with an organized person. Monitor spending, expenses, and income on a daily basis. One of the benefits of organizing is that you can see everything that you have, how you are spending, and then eliminate wasting money. Creating spending habits that align with your income is an empowering habit that will create a more organized life! To your success!
3 Post holiday organizing tips: Being able to offer post holiday organizing tips to clients and readers is so much fun. You’ve probably already taken down the decorations and returned the gifts that didn’t fit you. So let’s look at other creative ways to get organized for the new year. 1. Gift cards: As a Personal and Professional Organizer my clients often find unused gift cards when we are getting rid of clutter in drawers. They’ve either forgotten about them or didn’t want them and will probably never use them. Recently I discovered that there is a way that you may be able to convert your gift cards into cash. Although you will get a reduced amount it’s better than wasting a gift that someone wanted you to enjoy. Check out websites such as Cardpool, Raise and Card Hub. These services will make potential offers to resell your unwanted cards and you can get the discounted value or make a swap for another card. The benefits of organizing can actually include financial gain. 2. Holiday cards and wrapping paper: You can declutter piles of cards, tissue and wrapping paper by donating them right away. You can also repurpose the cards that you receive and use their front covers for gift tags next year; benefits of organizing do pay off! Get rid of wrapping paper remnants and if you have to buy more, buy solid colors rather than holiday designs so that you can use the paper all year long. For instance, red paper during Valentine’s Day and 4th of July. Green paper isn’t just for Christmas it’s great for St. Patrick’s Day and Easter, right? My Outside In Approach is to encourage you to use gift bags from now on so that they can be used over and over… read more →
As a Personal Organizer in San Diego I have some favorite products that I use and like to recommend to others. The first time I heard about packing cubes I wondered if they were necessary. I’m not only sold on how easy they make packing and unpacking, but I offer these amazing Organizing Products on my website for you, too. All organizing products are designed to make things more efficient and streamlined. This is especially important during the holidays when you have so many things to remember. Using the cubes for categories of items allows you check what you’ve packed with ease and without having to refold clothing. I love to use these packing cubes in different sizes and in a variety of ways. Here are some examples: Contain smaller items such as chargers and adapters Contain delicate items such as knitted and crocheted sweaters & scarves Pack by category such as swimwear, active wear, lingerie, socks Pack by outfit to include the top, bottom and accessories to go with the outfit Pack by climate if you are going to more than 1 destination The beauty of using these cubes when you travel is that you can organize your suitcase and eliminate clutter. Organized packing means that you can save time unpacking by keeping them intact when you arrive at your destination. Just place the packed cubes directly into the drawer or on the shelf and you will always know where to find what you need. ORGANIZING PRODUCTS TIPS: Buy 1 extra large size packing cube for laundry Buy smaller size packing cubes to use in your carry on bag
As a Personal Organizer and Time Management Coach I can tell you that your organizing and time management needs change with the seasons. It is getting dark earlier and soon the clocks will change. How does that impact you and your family, your schedules, and routines? Do you tend to feel more sluggish this time of year? Do you eat differently? Does your productivity seem to vary at home, school or work? This month I’m going to challenge you to take a proactive approach, practice self-care, and get organized in every aspect of your life! I am going to share my personal seasonal organizing and time management tips so that you can easily use them to help you feel less stressed during the Fall season and into the holidays. The first action I am asking you to take is to sign up for my San Diego Outside In Organizer and Makeover newsletter. Here are 3 reasons why you don’t want to miss out on receiving my monthly newsletter: Special offers and incentives Easy to implement organizing and time management strategies, checklists, and tools An invitation to my upcoming workshops This month look for my seasonal organizing tips and posts for your health, work, school, travel, guests, and holiday preparation!
Which is it, are you the disorganized boss, or is it the employee who is disorganized? One sure sign of disorganization is poor time management, and the result is diminished productivity. It doesn’t matter if it is the boss or the employee who is disorganized since both of your styles affect one another and your work. If you are the disorganized boss (late for meetings, unprepared, difficulty prioritizing) with the organized employee here are some strategies to put into place: Ask the employee to work out a system to signal you 10-15 minutes before your next appointment, task, or when you need to leave the office to commute. Have a brief daily planning session to review what got done that day, what needs additional time (schedule it), and what is coming up for the next 2-3 days. Schedule blocks of time for your open door hour(s). Let your employees know when those times are. Ask your administrative assistant to schedule time for employees that need to meet with you at other times. But wait, what if you are the organized boss with a disorganized employee (can’t find what you need when you need it, poor scheduling skills, multi-tasker)? The most effective strategies to use in this scenario include: Clear, documented communication about expectations, including timelines. Ongoing reviews of the employees progress and opportunities for him/her to ask for help. Measurable goals with expected outcomes. Implement the necessary strategies today and whenever possible, be proactive. It’s not really the employee’s responsibility to take the leadership role in getting things organized.
Here is an important tip for the boss who feels disorganized: Get to the point! Your team members will perceive you as more organized if your communication is straightforward and succinct. However, if your thoughts and communication are disorganized it will impact your team members and employees in various ways: Ability to follow directions Understanding expectations Capacity to help the organization’s goals Identify your strengths – are you stronger verbally or in writing? If your strength is in verbally articulating your goals, expectations, and standards ask someone to record what you say in writing. Have them say it back to you to check for accuracy before it is distributed to other team members. If your ability to convey information in writing is stronger, highlight the key points verbally from your notes, then distribute the written version. Now for the critical measure of functioning as an organized boss… Identify the key 2-3 points you need to communicate. Tell your team what you are going to talk to them about and then tell them. Summarize what you told them. Then, ask them if there is anything that they need clarified. By modeling this type of communication, one that builds from your strengths, you can expect others to do the same. Try it, role play it, get feedback. I promise that your organization ranking will increase! As a Time Management Coach and Professional Organizer my mantra is schedule time to plan this. Don’t try to wing it!
Are you a disorganized boss? If so, it will often become apparent in your daily and weekly schedule. Does this sound familiar? Unprepared for meetings Working on things at the last minute No time scheduled for planning If that sounds like you then there are 2 ways to address these issues. First, if you have an organized administrative assistant, have him or her create a weekly template with blocks of time dedicated to specific activities. If you do not have someone to delegate this task to it is helpful to work with a Time Management Coach/Professional Organizer who can help you set up this type of system. Keep it simple and use one type of calendar, if possible. Whether it is a paper planner or online calendar it is important to be able to view the entire week. Secondly, make sure that your weekly schedule includes time to plan ahead each day as well as at the end of each week. You will feel, think and behave in more organized and productive ways when you create these 2 time management habits!