Sunday, June 26, 2011

Summer Parties - More Organized & Less Stress

It's summer. Time for parties and picnics. So make your life easier by keeping things simple and keeping things organized.

Spending time with family and friends should be easy. But a lot of people get stressed out when they think about entertaining. That's not how it's supposed to be. You can make entertaining more enjoyable by having things planned out and organized ahead of time.

* Step back and look at the big picture. Keep things simple.
* Decide on how many picnics, BBQ's and parties you will probably have this summer.
* Use paper plates and plastic utensils. Buy enough at the beginning of the summer to keep you stocked throughout the summer.
* Buy all of your beverages (pop and such....) ahead of time so it's always on hand.
* You can also buy any canned items or other munchies (chips, pretzels....) that are on sale.
* Plan simple meals. It's about being with family and friends, not impressing people.
* If you are having friends over let them bring a side dish or dessert so that you don't have to do it all.
* For a BBQ, buy some pre-made side dishes and just BBQ your favorite meat. There is no rule of entertaining that says that you have to make all the food.
* Don't feel that you have to "entertain" your's just about being together.
* Relax and enjoy yourself. It's not like on T.V. No one is going to judge you on how well you entertain.

For spur of the moment picnics:

* Keep a basket / bag filled with picnic essentials. Paper plates, cups, napkins, silverware, plastic bags for garbage.
* Keep a blanket in your car at all times for impromptu picnics or an evening at the beach.
* Pick up sandwiches and drinks at a grocery store on your way to the park or beach.
* Enjoy an hour or two at the beach / park at any time.

By planning ahead you will be able to enjoy the summer and have more time to relax with your friends.

Entertaining doesn't have to be nor should it be stressful. By planning ahead you too will be able to enjoy your summer.

Happy entertaining !

Organizational Consulting Services

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Cost of Disorganization

A lot of people don't realize that being "disorganized" costs them money. A lot of money.

Being organized is not only about everything "having a place" and "being in its' place", it's also a way of life.

When you are organized things run smoother. You know where everything is. You aren't searching for things. You get to work on time because your briefcase and keys are where they are supposed to be and you have left plenty of time for unexpected emergencies, like traffic jams.

But, when you are not organized you tend to be frantic. You are constantly searching for missing items. You then go to the store to buy items that you don't think you have. But then, someday, you run across that missing item. So you have just spent money on something that you really didn't need, because you really did have it.

If you do simple things like "put like items with like items" you will always know where things are. If you simply hang all of your "blue shirts" together you can easily find them when you need them. You will also be able to tell at a glance that you don't have a "blue shirt" when you need it.

By putting all of your "like" canned goods together you know exactly how many cans of "baked beans" you have, instead of buying more cans of things that you don't really need.

Constantly buying things that you really don't need because you already have it is just one "cost of disorganization".

Being late for work or a meeting and getting fired is another.

Not turning in a report at school and getting a failing grade is another.

Disorganization disrupts your life. It causes stress.

Take ten or fifteen minutes a day and get yourself organized.

You will feel better. Really you will.

Remember: Less Clutter = Less Stress .... in your Home, your Business and your Life

Organizational Consulting Services

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

Wishing all of the Fathers' a very Happy Father's Day !

Monday, June 13, 2011

De-Cluttering for a Move

Moving is not fun. Planning for a move is not fun. De-cluttering for a move is not fun.

But... sometimes it has to be done. Even a Professional Organizer will want to pull their hair out during a move. Especially when it's not done their way.

If you know that you will be moving you should immediately start the de-cluttering, purging process. It will make your move much easier. And much lighter. Which in turn will be much less expensive. Because most moving companies charge by truck weight.

I have done many move unpacks for clients that have just moved into town and I am always amazed at the things they decide to move. Old, worn out things. Things that should have been left behind. Because when you are moving it might be the only time that you really think about how often you have actually used the item.

If you know that you are moving ahead of time start going through your house and get rid of things that you have never used, aren't using, things that are old or worn out. Now is the time. Not after you move. If your washer and dryer are 15 years old why move them? It will be cheaper to buy new, more efficient appliances once you move and you will also save money by not paying to move them.

Go through your clothes and get rid of everything that you have not worn in a long time or is out of style. You may not have ever gone through your closet before this but now is the time. Why move things that you will not wear? If you are moving to a warmer climate and won't need those 25 sweaters...donate them. That goes for the snow ski's that you won't need in Miami. Of the treadmill that you have never used.

Get rid of everything that you can before your move. It will feel good! Really it will. You will wonder why you didn't do it sooner. And be sure to keep track of everything that you donate so that you can take a tax deduction.

Moving is a stressful endeavor. Try to make it less so by purging before you even think about packing.

Remember: Less Clutter = Less Stress .... in your Home, your Business and your Life

Organizational Consulting Services

Monday, June 6, 2011

Chronic Disorganization in Families

I have been getting a lot of calls from people lately telling me that they have a family member that is disorganized and that it is affecting the entire family.

They are frustrated and feel helpless. They don't know what to do or where to start. They want their home and their life to be "normal". They don't want to live in chaos.

But the family member thinks that they don't have a problem. Or the family member thinks that the person with the chronic disorganization issues could change if they wanted to and they are just lazy. Or the family member thinks that if the other people in the house would just get rid of the "clutter" then everything will be "all right".

None of those are true. Chronic Disorganization is a serious issue. It obviously affects the entire family or their would not be arguments and I would not hear from people complaining about their families.

Being disorganized affects not only the disorganized person but also everyone around them (family and co-workers). Unless you live alone it's not only one persons problem but it's a family problem. And the entire family has to be on the same page as how to fix (or try to start fixing) the problem.

It's not easy. The first step is to admit that there is a problem. Yes, it's just like all of those other "programs". You have to admit there is a problem. Sometimes there even needs to be an intervention.

As a Professional Organizer it is very hard to work with one person in a family if the other family members (or spouse) objects to the organizer being there. If they put the other person down or are negative (to the family member or organizer) then it makes the process of organizing or teaching organizational skills or making changes in the home almost impossible.

If chronic disorganization affects your life to the point where you are miserable or you are making your family miserable ...then it's time to take the first step in getting help. Whether it's working with a Professional Organizer or seeing a need to be comfortable in taking that first step.

Chronic Disorganization is a complicated issue. Once you understand that and are ready to learn how to get your life and home back on track you will be much happier.

A Professional Organizer does not judge. They will teach you skills that you can use for the rest of your life. They are supportive and caring. They understand that not everyone can be as organized as they are and they will not expect you to be. They will help get you to an organized place that you are comfortable in. They will help you set up systems that you can maintain. Because if it's too complicated and you cannot maintain it then you will be right back where you started.

Take things one step at a time. Decide that you or your family need help and direction and take the course that's right for you. With the right person.

Chronic Disorganization does not have to own you.

Organizational Consulting Services

Sunday, June 5, 2011

World Environment Day

Clutter, stuff, garbage.... all of it ends up taking up space in our world.

Please try and remember the environment on World Environment Day and pledge to make the world a better place by Reducing, Reusing and Recycling.

Educate yourself on green and/or natural cleansers that don't pollute the earth and are healthier for you.

Be realistic about your needs and your consumption of products.

Our world will only last as long as we let it. Think before you buy products that you don't need and will clutter up our world. We want our world to last....we want our world to be healthy.