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Time Management

Decluttering for Dollars - Time Management - OrganizingFinding time to organize is often a complaint  used by people.  In today’s society, activity is almost non-stop and it IS difficult to see where you can add yet another task to your schedule.  However, there are ways, hidden pockets of time, to accomplish things.  Below I cover a few of these often overlooked free periods.

  • Focus on a little bit at a time.  Rather than thinking about the enormous job at the forefront, split that mission up into controllable tasks. For instance, if you want to organize the boxes in your attic, you may think about going through one box per day, until it’s all complete.
  • Ask Someone to bug you.  Tell a close friend, relative or co-worker, what you plan to organize, and by what date. Then, merely request that person to bug you a small number of days before to see if you’ve completed it so far. A little outside inspiration is frequently an enormous help.
  • Bribe Yourself.  Make something you love to do, dependant on the achievement of today’s chore. If you promise yourself that you will not watch your favorite television program tonight, unless you work for 15 minutes on organizing your paper piles, you’re sure to get that little task completed. No cheating permitted.
  • Do not separate each pending bill. Whatever you do, don’t put your utility bill in one folder, your car insurance bill in another folder and your membership dues bill in another. All imminent bills should be together in an envelope, pocket folder or basket so they can be paid without having to search several different places to find them.
  • Fit in exercise by multi-tasking. Do some calisthenics or ride a stationary bike while watching your favorite television program. Do some easy stretches, while you’re on the telephone and you’re on hold. Waiting for the washing machine or dryer to finish, or waiting for a computer file to download? Now is a great time for some sit-ups or leg lifts!


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Organizing Pitfalls

Have you ever considered why you may be having trouble getting organized?  Below are the top five reasons.  Check and see if you are falling into one of these traps.

  • The ‘I’d Rather Do Something Else’ Mindset.  Let’s face it. We’d all rather be doing something fun, correct?  One way to overcome this problem is to schedule your organizing projects for first thing in the morning. Do your project for an hour or so, and be done with it. Once it’s out of the way, your day will be free to do things that you really enjoy.
  • The ‘All or Nothing’ Philosophy.  You may be unwilling to begin an organizing project because you only like to start things that you know you can conclude in one session. Waiting until you can do ‘the whole thing’ often ends up in nothing getting done.
  • Broad Goals and Priorities. Just making the statement, ‘I have to get organized,’ is too open. It often results in an overwhelmed, ‘I don’t know where to start’ feeling. Instead of saying you want to get organized, make a list of the exact things you’d like to organize, such as your bedroom closet, or your filing cabinet at work, or your schedule.
  • A Sense of Attachment.  Sometimes it’s really hard to part with things because you may feel a sense of attachment. It is imperative to decide what things are ‘really’ important to you and what things are just taking up space.
  • Fear of Failure.  One of the major reasons for not starting an organizing project is fear of failure. You may feel that since you haven’t been able to get organized for so many years, that it will be impossible for you to get organized now. Or, you may feel that even if you do manage to get it organized, you might not be able to keep it up.  Positive thinking is a must!!


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Stress Reduction

Decluttering for Dollars - Organizing - Stress ReductionEvery one of us can use a little less stress in our lives.  So often we try to follow the super-human scenario of trying to be all things to all people, all of the time.  What happens is we become burned out both emotionally and physically. This doesn’t have to be the case.

Grab a lot of index cards and write a specific goal on each–anything you think of that you want to do. Arrange the cards so that the goals you MOST want to attain are on top, and the less essential goals go behind. Then, write deadlines on each of your top three cards, break each goal down into mini-goals, and schedule time to achieve each of them.

Clean a bit each day. Obtain some index cards and write a cleaning task down on each. Place all of your cards in a box, and draw one each day–that’s your cleaning task. Be sure to include some FREE DAY cards in your box. If you draw one of them, you don’t have to do any cleaning for the day.

Traffic delays occur for all sorts of reasons. If you discover you can’t take your original route, you’ll have to go another way. Know your alternate routes, before you leave your home or office. This way, you’ll be able to allow for extra time.

There are very few things you can do that will only take 5 minutes or less to complete. For example, you may think it takes 5 minutes to check your e-mail, but very often, it takes 15 minutes or more. Once you get into your e-mail program, dial up, read a few letters, perhaps respond to a few, and then close your program, that original 5 minutes often is long gone. Allow for more time than you think you’ll need.


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