Celebrate Your Accomplishments and Prioritize Your To-Do's for 2011 - What can You Eliminate?
December is the time of year when we celebrate a variety of holidays based on religion; but December can also be a time to celebrate yourself and what you’ve accomplished during the year.
Instead of looking at your to-do list and beating yourself up over those tasks you didn’t accomplish; consider everything you accomplished this year and that will give you many more reasons to celebrate.
Let’s face it…your to-do list will never be complete, no matter the length or how organized it is. In our October newsletter I wrote about several online applications you can use to manage your to-do lists.
If you don’t have a system in place for tracking your to-do lists, perhaps this will be a priority for you in 2011.
As the saying goes, “out with the old and in with the new” is a fitting slogan for organizing and for looking ahead at January which is National Get Organized Month.
Take a look at your to-do list from this year, what were you not able to accomplish? Have you considered that perhaps it was not a priority? We typically make time for those “to-do’s” that are a priority, just as we spend money on priority items.
The end of the year is a great time to reassess and eliminate those to-do’s that are no longer a priority or no longer serve a purpose in your life and start with a fresh list for 2011.
Be realistic about what you add to your list for 2011, so you have a feeling of accomplishment, rather than a feeling of overwhelm.
Building on the “out with the old and in with the new” theme; here are a few quick projects to kick-start 2011:
1. Eliminate magazines older than 3 months and newspapers older than a week – more will soon arrive and unless you have an unlimited amount of time for reading, be realistic about the number of subscriptions you have when deciding to renew the subscription.
2. Spend 20 minutes taking a quick pass through your closet. What “everyday” clothes didn’t get worn? These are good candidates for a homeless shelter or transition home for women. Be sure these clothes do not require mending.
3. Do your children have toys they no longer play with or books they don’t read? Now is a great time to have them help you make some decisions and donate their toys and books they have outgrown to children in need. Google “foster care” along with the name of your city for places to donate.
4. Spend 30 minutes giving your kitchen command center or desk a once over to determine what papers need to be shred, recycled or filed. Be ruthless – over 80% of what you keep you will not reference again. Keep in mind that documents that must be kept (whether hard copy or electronically) – are kept for tax or legal reasons; everything else is discretional. If you are not sure what kinds of papers to keep, how long to keep them, or how to organize them, consider my Eliminate Paper Chaos class I will be teaching in our offices on February 12.
5. In less than 10 minutes give your bathrooms and linen closets a once-over to find unused toiletries or blankets to donate to a homeless shelter. These items are always needed especially this time of year.
If you decide to tackle these five projects, they will only take you about 1-2 hours in total – which is not a lot of time to restore a bit of order and help someone else out along the way.
There is so much to be grateful for and celebrate this time of year. The minute I start to beat myself up for not accomplishing everything I had hoped to do this year, I must remind myself that I am so very fortunate to have a wonderful family, fabulous friends and most of all, good health. This year, far too many people I know have been diagnosed with cancer or lost their life to the disease. So as this year comes to an end, I will celebrate life, good health and the company of friends and family and as for 2011 – I will re-prioritize my list and set realistic goals for 2011.
May you enjoy and celebrate all the joys this season has to offer.
Until next year – Happy Holidays.
Eliminate Chaos Public Seminars
Back by popular demand - public classes held in the Eliminate Chaos office near Mill Creek, WA
Organizing with Laura - Real Life Strategies and Techniques: February 9, 2011
Organizing Your Workday Using Microsoft Outlook 2007: February 10, 2011
Eliminate Paper Chaos: February 12, 2011
Class sizes are limited - so be sure to register soon to guarantee your space in class.
If you live outside the greater Seattle area, give us a call and see how we can bring one of our programs to you - or complete this quick online form.
We also have Microsoft Outlook How-To DVD's available for purchase from our website. Each of these DVD's is a live Outlook 2007 demonstration by Laura Leist.
E-mail Productivity Solutions for Microsoft Outlook 2007 - $69 for 1.5 hours of instruction
Organizing Your Workday Using Microsoft Outlook 2007 - $79 for 2.25 hours of instruction
FREE Organizing Seminar with Laura Leist at California Closets
Do you have too much chaos in your home? Do you have trouble finding things when you need them? Do you purchase duplicate items because you can't find what you are looking for? If you can answer YES to any of these questions, then you won't want to miss this helpful seminar.
Through this interactive presentation and use of real-life examples, you will learn:
- Discover the three biggest organizing mistakes
- "It's Not About the Stuff(R)"
- Understand the 10-steps you need to know to organize any room in your home
- Simple changes you can apply immediately in your home
Topic: Eliminate Chaos - The 10-Step Process to Organize Your Home & Life
Date: January 20, 2011
Place: California Closets Showroom - Bellevue, WA
This seminar will be a great way for you to kick-start your 2011 organizing projects.
Laura Leist, CPO, is the author of the best-selling book; Eliminate Chaos: The 10-Step Process to Organize Your Home & Life.
Announcing the Upcoming Release of my latest Book:
Eliminate the Chaos at Work: 25 Techniques to Increase Productivity
In less than 5 months, my latest book will make its debut!
Eliminate the Chaos at Work is divided into four sections:
- Time Management
- Paper Management
- Electronic Information Management
- Organizing the Stuff
Each chapter contains practical, easy-to-implement advice you can use immediately in your office to increase your productivity and help you be more organized at work.
Each 'technique" is explained in detail and provides suggestions for implementation.
If this is a topic you are interested in, be sure to sign up for our new business newsletter where I will share these techniques over time.
You can also follow me on Twitter (@lauraleist) where I will be tweeting about business related organizing and productivity topics.
Give the Gift of Time and Organization
Not sure what to get the person that has everything?
Need a gift for an employee with a return on your investment, greater than the investment?
An Eliminate Chaos Gift Certificate makes the perfect gift for a loved one or one of your employees. Here are a few ideas of the many ways your gift certificate can be used:
For the Home
- Kitchen organization: Start the new year out with a well organized kitchen, making it easier to cook healthy meals.
- Home Office organization: Start the new year with a new paper management system that will save you time when it's time to prepare your taxes.
- Garage organization: Wouldn't it be great to park the car in the garage this winter?
For the Office
- Personal Productivity: Work smarter, not harder in 2011. Learn techniques to increase your productivity at work.
- Microsoft Outlook Productivity Training: Take control of your time, information and inbox with one-on-one or group training - in your office, or remotely.
- Paper & Information Management: Create systems that allow you to easily store and retrieve information when needed - stop wasting time looking for information.
Give us a call at 425.670.2551 to purchase your gift certificate in various denominations. We can process your gift certificate and have it to the recipient up until 12pm pacific time on 12.24.10.
Announcing: The New Eliminate Chaos Business Newsletter
Beginning in January 2011 we will publish a quarterly electronic newsletter for those interested in business productivity topics and how to get organized at work.
This newsletter will coincide with the upcoming release of my new book:
Eliminate the Chaos at Work: 25 Techniques to Increase Productivity
If you receive this newsletter and would like to receive our new publication, click to update your profile. You will not automatically receive this publication unless you subscribe or update your profile.
In the News
In October I was a guest of International Talk Radio Host - Sallie Felton.
The topic of our conversation was Eliminate Chaos in Your Office - Listen Here
Need to do some downsizing? Read "Downsize Me" featured in Kiplinger's Personal Finance.
Best Regards - and Happy Holidays,