Clean that Messy Desk in 5 Minutes a Day

I’ve helped quite a few clients with their offices whether at home or at work. Clients are typically motivated to improve their productivity and spend less time looking for things. However, there is another reason to get organized. Like it or not, some people may look at your desk and make judgments (positive and negative) about  your work ethic or abilities.  Of course, you don’t want a messy desk to keep you from advancing your career. We’re happy to share some easy-to-implement ideas from our friends at Quill to help you keep your desk clean, and your work projects on track.

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Together … You Can Conquer Family Clutter

Who says clutter clearing has to be something you do alone?  After all, if you have a family it isn’t likely that you created all the clutter on your own.  Instead make decluttering a family project.  When everyone is vested in the outcome from the beginning, organizing solutions are more likely to last. If you try to impose a system without getting input, family members may put up a fight and return to their messy ways.  Learning to work together is an important life lesson. If you choose to organize communal spaces by yourself, family members may be missing out on developing important skills.

Take a mindful approach to life and organization

mindfulness organizingIf you are wondering why you feel more stressed than ever before, technology may be to blame.  When we remain constantly connected through smart phones and other electronic devices we receive information at unprecedented speed, faster than our brains are able to process. This induces the body’s stress response and there is a growing body of evidence that chronic activation of this system can be damaging to our health. Studies have also shown that technology may have a negative impact on depression and even long term memory. “Technology is part of culture and we just accept it, but we don’t have time to process it and it induces fear and anxiety,” says Peggy Sealfon, an author, speaker and stress and anxiety coach.  “We need to teach coping skills. We need to get to the root cause of our stress.”

Organization and Creativity Can Coexist

It seems to be a common belief that people are either left-brained or right-brained, good with liberal arts or good with math and science, artsy or organized. While people certainly can lean one way or the other, the idea that creativity and organization can’t coexist simply isn’t true.

Here are some ways creative people can find a system to organize their space:

Understand Your Style
Knowing your preferred methods of organizing and processing information are crucial when trying to create. The same way one person might like to absorb ideas through visuals rather than audio, it’s important to know whether you like pens versus pencils, technology over tangible materials, or listening to music instead of silence. Don’t make it more difficult to cultivate creativity. Apply strategies that work well with your natural inclinations.

Living Simply Frees Up More than Space

Live SimplyMany people associate living simply with removing the physical clutter in their life – the things we have accumulated over the course of a lifetime that that no longer have meaning or a purpose. But it’s more than that. It’s also about pairing life down to only those things, activities and relationships you need or cherish. And just because items don’t take up physical space, doesn’t mean they can’t weigh us down mentally. Think about the constant barrage of commercial messages we are exposed to online and on TV that we have to filter through on a daily basis.

An Organized Home is Pure Joy

Why having an organized home is pure joy

What brings you joy? Family and friends are probably first on everyone’s list, but I have to say that having an organized home is near the top for me. Here’s why:

I can focus on the people

For starters when my home is organized, I feel more focused and can devote my full attention to the people in it. There are no the piles of laundry, paper and junk to distract me.

I worry less about money

Motivation for your Organizing Efforts

Get a Clear View of Your Organizing Efforts
I like the idea of placing your weekly organizing accomplishments on post-it notes and putting them in a jar. When I posted it on Facebook it generated a lot of response. The idea of the notes is to provide you with a visual reminder of how much you accomplished over the course of a year. You may want to review all your progress at the end of the year by looking at all the notes you made.

How to Live Your Best Life

Subject: A woman practicing yoga lotus pose at the Grand Canyon National Park.

Living your best life doesn’t have to be overwhelming. We think it’s best to take it one day at a time. As we move through the year we will focus on one of 12 tips to help you on your journey. Make every day better.

  1. Create your vision.
  2. Align with your values.
  3. Focus on what brings you joy.
  4. Live simply.
  5. Find your creativity.
  6. Cultivate a spiritual connection.
  7. Share love with others.
  8. Make a meaningful contribution.
  9. Explore new places.
  10. Be a lifelong learner.
  11. Appreciate nature.
  12. Be adventurous!
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How would you fare in a disaster?

Emergency_ButtonThe devastation wielded by Hurricane Harvey is massive. Our heart goes out to the hundreds of thousands of people who found themselves in unimaginable situations as more than four feet of water fell on Houston and other areas along the gulf coast. While the images are fresh in our minds, it’s important to identify lessons to be learned.

How could we prepare for events of similar magnitude?

Coincidentally, National Preparedness Month (NPM) is observed each September in the US. Sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), NPM encourages people to take steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses, schools, and communities.

What Seniors Know About Staying Organized

Group of friendly seniors playing cards at leisure

In my years as a professional organizer I have heard a lot of wisdom from seniors on staying organized. They bring a lifetime of challenges and solutions when it comes to organizing. Here is some of that wisdom in their own words.

Identify what’s important to you. If there were a fire what would you grab? That’s one way of thinking about it. But on an everyday basis, look at what you use. What do you touch? That’s how I determine what is essential.

If the thing annoys you, get rid of it, or give it to someone who likes it.