You may not have realized that January is “National Get Organized” month. Was getting organized one of your resolutions for 2010? Has it been a challenge to figure out where to start and what to do? Do you feel overwhelmed? If you are feeling this way, I can guarantee you, you are not alone. When you decide to get organized, you are making a lifestyle choice. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to be more organized at home, in your home office or at work; the first step is the same. In fact, it’s such an important step that “Making Time” is Step 1 of my 10-Step Process as documented in Eliminate Chaos: The 10-Step Process to Organize Your Home & Life.
What I usually hear people say is that they need to “find time” to get organized. You will never find time. You need to make time. If working in an organized office and living in an organized home is your desire, it needs to be a priority. Priorities are those items that we choose to spend our time on: family, friends, faith, fitness, work, volunteer opportunities, hobbies and more. No wonder it’s so hard to make time to get organized, schedules are already full!
Since adding more hours to your day is not an option, you may wish to consider that something from your schedule may need to be removed temporarily while you tackle a new project.
Although I consider that I live an organized home and work in an organized office, I find myself getting easily distracted at times and losing focus on the bigger goals I have previously set. Thankfully, Rob is there to be my voice of reason to remind me to “remain focused” and work towards the goals I’ve set. He is a fantastic accountability partner.
Here are a few ideas to help you achieve your organizing goals for 2010
Make a list of those organizing projects you want to accomplish this year. You are more likely to achieve your goals when they have been written down and you can review them frequently.
Determine how much time you think each project will take and multiply by 2, maybe 3. As with most projects, you will find that things take longer than you anticipate; so don’t frustrate yourself by not making enough time to accomplish each organizing goal.
Look at your calendar. How much time per day/week/month can you “realistically” set aside for this project? If you only have one hour/week, then that is what you have to work with – and you may need to reprioritize your list of projects and reconsider what is most important to you. Remember, it’s not a competition; you’re doing this for yourself.
Schedule time for each project on your calendar – just like you would a meeting at work or dinner with a friend and then honor that time commitment you’ve made to yourself. If you’ve scheduled an hour, focus and return calls or respond to email later.
Don’t add more to your plate than you can realistically accomplish.
Complete one project before you start the next. Don’t start so many projects that you don’t complete any of them successfully. You will be much more successful on future projects when you can experience the feeling of accomplishment.
Reward yourself for each milestone you reach. Reflect on your accomplishments and celebrate your successes.
Instead of celebrating “Get Organized Month” in January for just one month, consider the benefits you will experience throughout the year as you work towards the goals and priorities you’ve set for yourself.
I wish you the drive to remain focused on your organizing priorities and goals.
Outlook Productivity Moment
This year I will include an Outlook productivity tip in each newsletter. I hope you will find each one to be useful at work or at home.
Problem: You have lots of information that needs to be discussed during an upcoming meeting, but where do you store your discussion topics and documents needed for the meeting?
Solution: In the “notes” section of the appointment. Say for example you have a weekly meeting or weekly conference call. Throughout the week you think of things for discussion during the meeting. Rather than jot them down on a scrap of paper (that could disappear before the meeting), open up the appointment and make your list in the notes section instead.
Additionally, if you have an e-mail in your inbox that is also a topic for discussion for the meeting, you can insert the email as an “item.” An “item” could be an email, task, note or contact. If you insert an “email item”, a copy of the email is attached to your appointment. You could now delete the email from your inbox as you have a full copy of the email in the notes section of the appointment.
To insert an item: open the calendar item | click on the Insert tab | click on the Attach Item button
An Insert Item dialog box will open where you can navigate to and select the item you wish to insert, such as an email.
Outlook Webinar Recordings - Coming Soon
I recently recorded two Outlook webinars that you will soon be able to purchase on our website.
Email Productivity Solutions Using Microsoft Outlook 2007 – 1 ½ hours
Organizing Your Workday Using Microsoft Outlook 2007 – 2 hours and 20 minutes.
Each of these webinars will be available for download in early February from our website.
California Closets and Eliminate Chaos
Partner to Bring You 4 Free Seminars in 2010
If you live in the Greater Seattle Area, you will be able to attend a free seminar at the California Closets show room.
Each presentation will run about an hour and will include refreshments and drawings for some fabulous prizes. The presentation will take conference room with useful tips to help you with your project. We will then will continue in the showroom with a designer from California Closets who will show you how to incorporate product into your solution.
While each seminar is free of charge, we ask that you please be sure to RSVP for each event you want to attend to ensure a seat.
2010 Los Angeles Organizing Awards
The Golden Globes, Oscars and SAG awards aren’t the only awards shows in LA not to be missed…there are even the “Organizing Awards” – taking place on Saturday, January 31 st. The Los Angeles chapter of NAPO presents the 2010 Organizing Awards where 25 awards will be presented.
Who knew “getting organized” could be so much fun! It’s going to be a fabulous way to end “Get Organized” month. I am honored to be presenting the first award of the evening – for Best Product Retailer. Who will win the award? Will it be Discover Organizing, Franklin Covey, Organize.com, Stacks and Stacks or The Container Store? And the winner is….you’ll have to stay tuned!
"I worked with Erin, one of the specialists who works with the Chronically Disorganized (hoarders). In a word, she was fantastic. In four 4-hour sessions, she helped me go through and box up (keep, donate, trash) almost everything that was stacked up in my kitchen, dining room, office, and bonus room. Erin arrived promptly. We went over what I wanted to accomplish that day, then we got to work. She was focused, calm, non-judgmental, and tireless. She faced very dirty circumstances and didn't bat an eyelash. She never once caused me a moment of anxiety; the relief that I felt when we were done was amazing. And Laura Leist, who is the owner of Eliminate Chaos, was lovely. She returned my calls promptly, was kind and understanding, and offered me some options. I would hire this company again in a heartbeat. But right now I'm too busy enjoying all the free space in my house!"
A great way to try us out and get some organizing done at the same time! For a limited time, we are offering an amazing NEW client organizing special. If you are not an existing client this is a great way for us show you how we can eliminate your chaos.