Using Time Management Tips to Gain 6 More Weeks Back!

February 3, 2016
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So today was Groundhog Day and I presented my time management tips and tools to a group at the East Cobb Library. For those of you unable to attend, I’m giving you the handout my audience received. I will also be posting a link to the presentation video soon. Please contact me for any questions or help 404-825-2105.

TIME MANAGEMENT TIPS & TOOLS:

Drop Zone:

  1. Create a space near the entry of your home for your family calendar, keys, hooks for backpacks, charging station for cell phones and iPad, baskets for shoes and a mail center.
  2. Every night before bed, make sure all homework is in backpacks and all items in drop zone for the next morning. You can also lay out clothes, prep snacks & lunches night before.

Calendar:

  1. Have a family calendar (monthly or quarterly) displayed somewhere so everyone can see it easily.
  2. Color code it for each family member and put everyone’s activities on it each day (try to pick one day per month for the family to sit down and fill out the calendar for the next month). Make sure the bus schedule, school activities, permission deadlines and all after school appointments are on the calendar.
  3. If you prefer electronic, use a system that can sync with your spouse or kids and update it regularly.

Routine:

  1. Set up a weekly routine for yourself and your family.
  2. Try to keep a set meal time, homework time, bath time, bed time and play time. Even if it doesn’t happen every night, if you try to keep to a schedule, it makes your evenings and your mornings easier.

Cooking:

1.Weekly meal plan and grocery list

2.Cook several meals and freeze

More Tips:

  1. Stop procrastinating: Set a timer to do 20 minutes at a time & Start with most difficult
  2. One task at a time and complete
  3. Multi-tasking (if you must: one physical and one mental at a time)

While pumping gas:

Clean out purse/ wallet/ car

Check e-mails and texts (return and delete)

While talking on the phone:

Fold laundry

Unload dishwasher

Clean out a drawer

  1. Learn to say NO
    1. When you say yes – you say no to something else

Time Saving Websites and Apps

www.ThredUp.com (10-80% / clean-up bag)

www.Unroll.me (unsubscribe to all sites or get one e-mail per day)

www.parents.com (chore charts and meal planners)

Doctor on Demand APP (24/7 access to physician)

Groove Book ($2.99 for 100 4×6 photos printed)

TIME SAVED USING TIME MANAGEMENT TOOLS:

Getting organized = 7.5 hours/ week not looking for stuff

Planning (make a list, menu)= 10 hours/ week not wasting time (1 hour of planning saves 10 hours of doing)

Outsourcing & Delegating = 20 hours/ week spent on items you want to do

Websites & APPs = 18 hours/ week not couponing, re-reading junk e-mail or going to the doctor

TOTAL = 55.5/ week = 2886/ year = 8/ day

 

 

 

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How To Work With An Organizer

February 15, 2015
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Most people have never worked with an organizer before.  I’m going to give you a few tips and tools that will not only help you if you ever hire an organizer, but will help you organize yourself as well.

1. SHOP LAST: Almost all of my clients want to go shopping first – before I have even seen their home – they want to know what items to have ready when I show up.  This is a very common assumption.   You can’t know what you will need until after you organize the space.  This is why spending $1000 at the Container Store (or any store) will not magically make you more organized.  75% of all of my clients already have the items we need to get them organized. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you are going to have to make some decisions about your stuff and spend some time and energy to get organized.  Don’t worry, having an organizer makes this process way less painful and will actually save you time and money in the future.

2. ORGANIZERS ARE NOT PSYCHIC: Trust me, I wish we were – it would make life so much easier.  We can sort through your papers, clothing, dishes and other items, sort them into like-itemed groups, make a pile we think you will discard and even get a list of your clothing sizes so we can weed out the high school clothing that may lurk in the back of your closet. We can not however make the assumption or decision to get rid of your stuff without asking you.  I often work without my clients present but always need them at the end of a session or work week to give me the final say so.

3. COMMUNICATION IS THE KEY TO EXCELLENT RESULTS: I always start my projects with a written goal and the steps necessary to reach that goal along with an estimate of time and money needed to achieve said goal.  We are all human and plans change.  Organizers are usually TYPE A individuals who love plans.  Don’t get me wrong, we accept change and can roll with it as long as our clients communicate with us.  Whether you’ve changed your mind or had a family emergency, just let your organizer know (in advance if possible) so they can ensure your new goals get met just as efficiently and effectively as the original plans.

4. ORGANIZERS ARE PROBLEM SOLVERS: Don’t just tell us about your desire to own a fully functional pantry, let us know what else is going on in your home and life – we may have the solutions. Some organizers are also home stagers, designers and professional packers.  I’ve helped clients find repair crews, painters, pest control, cleaners, floor refinishers, career counselors, a new home for a pet, etc. Organizers have a large network of resources especially if they are members of NAPO (National Association of Profession Organizers) like me.

5. DON’T WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE: I know we are all very busy people these days but the earlier you call us, the better we can help you.  I have people contact me the day before they are moving at least three times per year.  I have performed some pretty amazing organizer magic but it caused lots of unnecessary stress to everyone involved. Most people tend to put off the tasks they do not want to do so I understand why I get last minute calls but just bite the bullet and call.  Setting the appointment is the hardest part; the rest of the process is like hiring a personal trainer. We have the organizing skills plus the motivation to get the job done.

Pick up the phone and call today: 404-825-2105 or Heather@Simplyorganizedyou.com

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Yes, Organizers have to organize their offices too! (aka: I am not perfect or a robot)

August 15, 2013
Yes, Organizers have to organize their offices too! (aka: I am not perfect or a robot)
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I am taking you on a “behind the scenes” look into what my office looked like after one year of regular use including before and after photos. I file my papers and put things back where they go each day but I still have to do de-cluttering from time-to-time. Why on earth am I showing you this? Because #1. I’m a risk taker and #2. I want everyone to know that even organizers have to spend a little time each week (and at least an hour or so each year) to keep their space organized.

 

HOW TO ORGANIZE YOUR HOME OFFICE

1. Develop a Vision:

If your office is used for more than just work, set up zones:
Work, Area for kids (homework or play), Wrapping or crafts, Exercise area, Guest room and Storage
      *My office is used for work, wrapping gifts and has a daybed in it for guests*
*BEFORE* – Closet and daybed during de-cluttering process
before 1before 2declutter 1
2. Arranging Your Space
—Your desk should fit your space
—Arrange it facing a door or window (not a wall)
—Have a comfortable chair (make sure it fits under your desk)
—Have action or desktop files at hand
—Have a filing cabinet handy (top can be used for printer)
—Bookcase
3. Desk Area
—Sort all like items
—Toss or donate unwanted and extras
—Store like items together
—Store extra items in closet, bookcase or magnetic strip
—Desk should only hold items you use every day
*SORT all like items: photos, envelopes, software disks*
sort 1pool 041sort 4
*DONATE*
donate
4. Filing
—Create a system for paper and electronic
—Sort, file and purge regularly
—Have a desktop or hanging action file (label: pay, call, file, pending, read) to keep papers from piling up on your desk
—Filing Cabinet: Files can be color coded by main topics
Ex: Banking = Red hanging file with each bank name and accounts in separate folders within main red file, Insurance = Blue with auto, home, health in separate folders within the blue file.
Vital Records File—
Set up a file, box or drawer where copies of all your most important documents are kept (originals in fire-proof safe or bank deposit box):
Passport, Birth certificate, Credit card numbers, Bank account numbers, Financial documents and or Insurance documents
5. E-mail System
—Use folders to sort and store e-mails (use the same folder names as your paper filing system)
—Flag important e-mails that are high priority
—Have separate addresses for work and personal
—Purge e-mails regularly
6. Store items not used regularly
—Take advantage of all vertical, closet and under-bed space:
Use built- in book shelves, Hang shelving, Hooks, Clear shoe/ pocket holders on back of door and under bed boxes for extra storage
7. Use Calendars to track appointments and tasks:
Wall calendar or Digital calendar (make sure to sync) – color coded for each family member
Block out time it takes for each task (from time you leave for appointment until time you get back)
Allocate twice as much time for each task
Break down tasks into small steps and use “do” dates as well as “due” dates
*AFTER*
*Wrapping area and extra supplies in closet*
*Daily supplies on shelf with action files on sides*
after 1after 2after 3
*Top of desk*
after 4
I hope you enjoyed seeing my imperfections :).
Please let us know if you need help organizing your home office or any other space by calling Simply Organized at 404-825-2105 or send me an e-mail: heather@simplyorganizedyou.com
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Time Management

March 19, 2013
Time Management
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With our increasingly busy lives, I wanted to take a moment to try to simplify them for you. I have listed several tips below that should help you add more time and less stress to your life. As always, if you need help, please contact me at 404-825-2105 or heather@simplyorganizedyou.com.

Time Management

  • Focus on one thing at a time and complete that task
  • Multi-task only one physical (ex. On phone and fold laundry)
  • Set reasonable and attainable goals (only a few per day)
  • Block off time on calendar (include drive time)
  • Do not procrastinate (set a 20 minute timer)
  • Do not over-commit = it’s o.k. to say “NO”

Have a Routine

  • Set dinner time
  • Set homework, bath and bed times (prep clothes night before)
  • Set up carpool = 2-3 days per week (school, sports, parties)

Errands

  • Try to get a couple done on your way to work, school or on your way home
  • Get your prescriptions where you buy your groceries
  • Keep your lists in your car so you can check them off each day

Cooking

  • Weekly meal plan and grocery list
  • Cook several meals at once and freeze
  • Use the crock pot for cooking while you’re away
  • Let kids prep b-fast and lunches the night before

 

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Creative Use of Space

February 12, 2013
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Great use of space inside kitchen cabinet.

Great use of space inside kitchen cabinet.

I am speaking at Alta (Independent Living for Seniors) in Johns Creek this Thursday about utilizing their space most effectively. There are thousands of great products and organizational tools out there but here are a few of my favorites:

1. Think outside the box by using the spaces inside your doors. Most of us do not utilize the space inside our cabinet doors or behind our bedroom and closet doors. In the kitchen, the inside of your cabinets can hold spice racks or hooks for items like measuring cups and spoons. Buy the Real Simple multi-pocket hanging storage and put it inside your office closet door for office supplies like paper clips, scissors and envelopes. Behind your bathroom door, it can hold cotton balls, q-tips and hair accessories. In your kids room it can be used for their toys, shoes and games or on your bedroom door for shoes, socks or the loose change your husband pulls out of his pants each evening.

2. Under your bed: Buy bed lifts for extra space and then use under-the-bed bags or bins for out of season clothes, shoes, books, memorabilia, etc.

3. Vertical space: Use bookshelves, built-ins or single shelving to take advantage of that extra wall space above the furniture. This is especially useful in an office, kitchen or kids room.

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Simply Organized Speaks at IKEA

January 20, 2013
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Yesterday, I had the privilege of speaking at IKEA with Jonda Beattie about Home Office Organization.  It was a 20 minute presentation which included topics such as: Creating a Vision for your office, Arranging your desk, chair, lighting and storage, Filing systems, Controling your e-mail inbox and more.  If you would like help with your home office,or any other room in your home, call me for a free assessment 404-825-2105.

Heather Rogers, owner of Simply Organized, speaks at IKEA about Home Office Organization.

Heather Rogers, owner of Simply Organized, speaks at IKEA about Home Office Organization.

 

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