June's Organized365 reminds us that we are hitting 2018's halfway point. Reflect on the goals you have achieved. What have you accomplished that you had not anticipated? There are always surprises!
What goals remain? Focus on developing a plan for moving forward and then implement!
Reach Out & Connect
Busy lives often mean that both professional and social activities must be scheduled weeks or even months in advance. Balance this with unexpected opportunities and reach out when you find an opening in your schedule.
Have a cancellation? Do weekend plans put you in town at an unanticipated time? Take advantage of these spur of the moment opportunities. It is surprising how often a rewarding, relationship building experience will result!
Watch, Listen, Learn
Your friends are a wealth of information. Shortcuts, tips & tricks are gleaned from families and colleagues. Collectively it is a gold mine of treasures from which you can benefit.
Observe fellow committee members as they arrive for a meeting and set up their space at the table. Pay attention to how your host lays out food and beverages at a party.
New ideas and shortcuts are everywhere. Keep your eyes open and find ways to streamline your routines and reduce stress.
Have a Plan x2 (or more)
Having a 'Plan B' assumes that only 1 thing may go wrong. Chances are that your quick trip to the gas station will be delayed by a train at the crossing or a deer in the road or .....
Not only will buffering your travel time help, you can transfer this strategy to padding time at the begin and end of meetings, appts, project work, etc.
Know what tasks you will abandon if time constraints demand that choices be made. This may mean delaying in some actions and eliminating others entirely. Either way, have a plan!
Count on being interrupted as you work on tasks, at work and home. Interruptions are unpredictable in timing and nature but you can be assured they will happen. Develop strategies that allow you to resume tasks having dealt with the interruption.
At work that may mean making a note of the step you are on in executing a routine task or jotting down an idea. At home perhaps setting an item down in a high traffic area will be enough to bring you back to the point at which you were interrupted.
Prevent missed meetings, phone calls, appts, etc. by setting notifications from your calendar or by simply setting an alarm or timer. It is easy to become so immersed in a project that you lose track of time. Setting an alarm lets you free your mind to focus on the task at hand with the assurance that your alarm will prompt you to get to time sensitive responsibilities in a timely manner.
Keeping your desk free of clutter is critical to productive use of time. Eliminate distractions by removing items that do not require your attention on a given day. Take advantage of open space to layout agendas or messages that need to be addressed in the near future. Keeping priority items visible and in easy reach fosters the efficient use of your time and attention.
Routine tasks can be quite complex. Create a step-by-step guide to moving through the task smoothly. Use the guide like a template to avoid the frustration of re-doing your work and wasting time. Using 'tricks' to increase efficiency not only eases your stress, it projects a sense of your competency to your colleagues as well.
Capitalize on Wall Space
Nervous about moving files off your desktop? Eliminate concern about losing track of ongoing projects by using wall file organizers. Hanging files allow you to have prioritized materials at hand but not on your desktop obscuring the project underway.
Time Out for Thinking
Checking items off your to-do list feels great but can also be mind-numbing. Take time to focus on the abstract. Reflect on your overall life satisfaction.
What are your dreams? Get out and explore nature or a new town or shop. Page through a magazine you've never read before, open a book you would not normally consider, or listen to a offbeat podcast.
Breaking out of your normal boundaries is great for sparking creativity and refreshing your mind!
Take the 1st step toward addressing the stress inducing challenges in your life. Contact us today!
Filter Early & Often
Options come our way in an endless stream. FOMO often means we save information to keep choices open. Making decisions at the point of 1st entry helps limit the congestion that can result from having every possibility open to us. Filter your options using a funnel like mind-set. How much time will be required? How expensive is the event? Will I enjoy spending time with the other participants?
Avoid having a traffic jam of activity on your calendar.
Point of Need: Moving
Support and guidance can make all the difference when you are feeling overwhelmed. If you will be selling a home and moving, we have resources that can help.
Email val@p2gconsulting to request a FREE copy of our Moving Tracker tool.
Have a 'fall back' plan to relieve fear of failure. Consider worst case scenarios and weigh the consequences. This mental exercise, performed in advance, can speed your progress when obstacles are encountered and bolsters confidence.
Knowing "the worst that can happen" does not have to hinder your risk-taking but can free you to embrace the rush.
Extreme Planning - 1st Learn
Seeking new adventures and testing your limits can spark creativity and help you stay mentally sharp. A brilliant first step is learning from those who have successfully gone before you.
Listen to a podcast, watch interviews with participants, and read their 1st person accounts as well as research how-to guides and checklists. Being prepared means being informed!
Make Time for Appreciation
Share your gratitude with family and friends who support you and always have your back. Our most loyal champion @RobinWall is much appreciated. We have learned together and continue exploring and finding our way through clutter and all of life's experiences.
Identify and celebrate the champion in your corner! Please share as we'd love to hear these inspiring stories.
Your Home Atmosphere
We recently read of a 'well curated' home.
As a professional librarian curating is not for homes aside from collections, such as coins or Dresden dolls. Formal curation is best left to museums.
However, every home is a reflection of its inhabitants and careful choices about the atmosphere you want is important.
Home are unique and should reflect the personal needs of those who live there. There is no cookie cutter method that will meet all needs.
Avoid taking one size fits all solutions too much to heart and if you are discouraged reach out to us by emailing email@example.com and we will happily partner with you to find your ideal solution.
Complete Your Work Outfit Plan
Some days just planning for clean underwear can be a challenge. Plan an outfit to wear the next day helps relieve work stress and promotes better sleep.
Take this strategy to the next level and set out your accessories. Spending time rooting through a jewelry box for matching earrings can put your morning routine off track. Setting them out in advance helps you stay in the flow.
Want to hit reset on your fitness goals?
Warm weather and longer daylight hours provide the perfect opportunity to get outside and have fun while you exercise. Try something new, hike with the family, take your dusted-off bike out for a spin....the options are endless!
If your canine companion will be out exploring with you this summer, take care to protect those paws. Hot streets and sidewalks can burn pads while rocky trails and beaches can bruise or cut.
Monitor activity, check pads to ensure they are healthy, and watch for signs of limping. If you dog will tolerate it, consider using booties for paw protection.
Balance Your Data
Data based decision-making focuses attention on measurable factors. While analytical considerations are important they can lead to stress and unhappiness if they are the sole consideration for life decisions. Yep, college tuition is a vital piece of the decision-making puzzle as is the less measurable campus atmosphere. Weigh both subjective and objective criteria.
Struggling with a weighty decision? Contact our team for support. Trained mentors ask the questions that lead you on the path to a solution tailored to your unique wants and needs.
Sound the Alarm
Using a timer or alarm to assist is a practical strategy for getting where you need to be. However, the sounds emitted by your alarm can be annoying. Experiment with various alarm sounds to find the perfect tones for waking up without inducing immediate stress. Have you found your 'best sound'?
Where are your 300,000 Items?
Assuming the (origin unknown) numbers are valid, the average American household has 300,000 items. @AdamBlust brought this to my attention and sparked my curiosity.
I have started counting and invite you along for the ride or to conduct your own count.
Because my definition of a single item may not match that in the elusive study, results will be inconclusive but already I have started discovering forgotten items and eliminated items no longer of value. Play along and share your experiences!
The Count Is On!
Counting started with the refrigerator because it seems so contained and doable. I have decided that the food containers (Tupperware-esque) that I 'own' will be counted. Food containers that are really packaging will not. Here are my results: Fridge Door = 46 (Yikes!), Inside Fridge = 17 (not counting packaging only glass/plastic food storage containers). Freezer compartment = 11.
What does your fridge hold?
Kitchen Count & Hidden Treasure (300,000 things)
Time to tackle counting the remainder of the kitchen. Little used cabinet above the fridge...Jackpot! A forgotten coffee mug filled with change. Crazy, we have only lived here a year!!
Total remainder of kitchen = 494 *Counted silverware as 1, counted dishes for eating off as 1, serving dishes counted individually. Share your count.
Searching for keys?
Key location is a common obstacle to getting out of the door at the desired time. So frustrating when it happens again and again and of course, those pesky keys are hiding in a different location every. single. time.
Avoid continued frustration by identifying a key 'home' that fits individual needs. My keys go in the kitchen junk drawer, for my SO having an attractive, unique to his interests spot right inside the front door has proven to be effective 99% of the time. Win all around!
Entry Way Count (300,000 Things)
Key storage led right into our entry way count where between a hall cabinet and coat closet there are 144 items. Clarification on my counting, a pair of gloves is 1 item rather than 2. Same with boots. Bonus insight here was that I still have some winter clothing that needs an end of season wash. Oops!
Dining Room/Living Room Count
Many of the items in these two rooms travel. Getting a solid count is a challenge so I have only counted items that are permanent residents (furniture, wall art, etc.) That results in a count of 25 items in the dining room & 35 in the living room.
Combine tasks to optimize time. Pair a challenge with a pleasure. Clean the bathroom while enjoying an educational podcast. Our top favorite for making lunches, cooking, cleaning up tolerable is "The Librarian Is In" from @NYPL
What is pushing you over the edge?
We all have pressure points. Identify yours and then consider options for relieving the stress. Think beyond having more time and getting out of commitments.
Years ago, a supervisor and friend promoted the concept of 'planned abandonment'. Don't just let tasks slide and remain undone. Consciously decide what needs to be eliminated from your load and then act. Pay strict attention to what you add back with future commitments.
Your clutter may not be junk but it is distracting. Items that are visible to you can draw your attention away from your work. This is particularly true if the clutter is more interesting than the task at hand.
Have appropriate holding spaces for materials you need but which are not your focus. If that recent professional journal keeps drawing your gaze, put it out of sight. Then use it as an incentive to complete your current task.
You don't have to go it alone. Contact us at p2gconsulting.com. Let's begin working together!
Share your challenges and solutions with us in the comments.