I am a Certified Professional Organizer. Here are some truths about me.
1. My house is lived in. Real life people live here so real life needs to happen here.
2. I have a few stacks…..stacks of books, stacks of paper, and a pile of shoes.
3. I have mismatched, handwritten file folders
4. I have dust….more than my fair share
5. I have a lot of filing that needs to be done
6. I have too many clothes
7. My car stays a bit of a mess, not out of control messy but messy
8. You are likely to find a few dirty dishes in my sink and a counter that needs to be cleaned.
9. I have unorganized photos
10. I struggle with staying focused.
Here are some other truths:
1. I can find just about anything I need within a few minutes
2. My stacks are a bit of my decor. They are neatly stacked and I know what is in each stack. I will schedule time to go through the paper stacks at least once a week.
3. Mismatched, handwritten file folders don’t bother me…..they work.
4. My house is relatively picked up and I do a quick dust about once a week.
5. I file two times a year and because I don’t keep so much paper, that works for me
6. I do have too many clothes….a goal for 2014.
7. I clean the stuff out of my car once a week.
8. I always put dishes in the dishwasher before bed or immediately upon waking in the morning
9. I do have unorganized photos….another goal for 2014.
10.I struggle with focus but work very hard at keeping myself focused, which you can do when
you talk yourself through and remind yourself to stay on task.
Organizers are not perfect……we just have tools and systems that will help you get organized and stay more organized. Real life is going to get us all out of whack, every now and then. The key is being able to right the ship pretty quickly.
Getting organized is one thing……staying organized is another but with small, manageable steps you can do both…..albeit not perfectly but excellently! Now, I have to go wash dishes!
The thought of de-cluttering leaves many people totally paralyzed and totally overwhelmed. I have many clients, surrounded by clutter, physical clutter and emotional clutter, initially incapable of attacking the piles, stacks, worries and problems.
What things are overwhelming you that you can break into smaller, more bite sized pieces? It literally is impossible to eat an elephant any other way than one bite at a time.
Being deliberate does mean that you will be aware. Being intentional means that you will take some action steps towards your goals.
I have an IPHONE 4 so I do not have the latest and greatest of all things techie. I do like my IPHONE 4 because it does what I need it to do but I am sure it will do more.
I am going to admit I am still and paper list girl. In a survey of all To Do List people, it was found that about 1/2 of the population is still paper To Do List people. Really, I am a combo, since my calendar is housed on my IPHONE, but essentially, my daily tasks and grocery lists are on paper.
Some of these Apps are free, some are free but have premium services for an extra fee and others have a monthly or annual fee. Some are a bit more complicated and detailed than others so look carefully at what your real needs are in a To Do List and stay away from bells and whistles that you don’t need or won’t use. I have linked each of these to their website; just click on the APP name.
Take a few minutes, find out which one might work for you and try it out. I just might, too!
Phones are now just mini computers so turning email, voicemail, text messaging, and other notification noises off, while you are working, is another important time management strategy.
Following through seems like one of the most natural things in the world to do. You start something and you finish it but that is not the case with a lot of, if not most people.
Lack of follow through creates enormous problems:
Don’t follow through on pursuing healthy lifestyle –
weight gain and sickness
Don’t follow through on schoolwork –
Don’t follow through at work –
poor results at work and poor work image projected
Don’t follow through at home –
clutter piles up, frustrations mount and bills go unpaid
Don’t follow through when disciplining children-
disrespectful and unruly children
Don’t follow through on getting car serviced on time –
greater damage and higher repair costs
Don’t follow through on backing up digital photos –
computer crashes and photos lost
Don’t follow through with saving money –
crisis hits and you are not prepared
Don’t follow through on opportunities –
So if all these terrible things are going to happen to us because we don’t follow through, then why don’t we follow through?
I have found 6 main reasons people fail to finish what they start.
1. Not paying attention. Have you ever walked in the house or office, mindlessly set something down and then never went back to do anything with it? Things begin to pile on top on one another and the next thing you know, you have a mess.
Have you gotten to the end of a day and wondered where your time has gone?
We mindlessly go through a day instead of being deliberate about using our time and energies wisely.
2. Tired. I find this to be a huge reason for people not finishing the things they start. You come home from work or have had a long day with kids and it seems easier to leave the dishes in the sink, the laundry unfolded or not put away, the mail untouched, the magazines unread, the pile of papers left unattended, the groceries not put away, etc. etc. etc. You get the point. We are all running and going and doing but the fact of the matter is -if you take those few moments, even when you are tired, to follow through on some of these tasks, you will actually, in the long run, feel less tired and overwhelmed.
3. Not scheduling time. Many people have good intentions but never set aside the time to do or complete something they have set out do.
4. Wrong reason for setting a goal or agreeing to do something. Many times we say yes to something without thinking it through. We feel bad for saying no, we feel pressured to say yes, we are doing something because someone else we know is doing it or we are convinced we are the only person that can get it done.
5. Following through is going to be hard. There are many things in life that we have to persevere through and many of us just don’t want to be bothered. We want things to be simple, uncomplicated and quick. We don’t want to have to make that unpleasant phone call. We don’t want to take the time to finish something because we have gotten bored. We don’t want to feel some of the uncomfortable emotions or feelings we will feel when we press through.
6. Forgetting. Many times we just forget to do something we said we would do; call someone, write a note, make a meal, etc.; we just forgot.
Here are 6 easy steps towards becoming better at follow through.
1. Pay attention to what you are committing yourself to and why. Don’t commit to something you don’t have passion, time, or energy for.
2. Press On. Pressing on and pressing through are two lessons I have learned the hard way. It is my choice to stop or press on and when I choose to press on, in spite of how I feel, I win every time! It is easier to give up when things are hard but when you press through the hard stuff of life, eventually you will come to breakthrough; you will get to the other side.
5. Make a note or schedule the time. Put things you need to do on a list of things to do or put it on your calendar. If it doesn’t get done, keep moving it to your current to do list until it gets done or your realize it shouldn’t be there in the first place.
6. Delegate or get help. Many times we need help completing a task. This can mean you involve family, friends, co-workers or of course your friendly professional organizer! Whoever it is, when it is time to ask for help, by all means, enlist help.
Follow through is a habit. When you have the mindset that you don’t have to follow through, then most of the time you won’t but if you believe that following through is the only option, then most of the time you will.
It is possible to begin to do better at following through……beginning today!