What chefs can teach us about organizing

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Any chef knows (and may very well live by) the French cooking term mis-en-place, meaning "to put in place."  In a bustling kitchen restaurant, mis-en-place is crucial for the chef's sanity and the timely delivery of the perfect plate.  Culinary Institute of America instructor Dwayne Lipuma told NPR, "Once [students] set up their station I should be able to blindfold them and tell them ... and they should know that their tongs are always here, their oil is always right here, their salt and pepper is always right here."

If you were blindfolded, could you find anything you need in your office?  Please listen to and read NPR's For a More Ordered Life, Organize Life a Chef.

The German Way of Sending Emails

Recently at a talk I delivered a the World Bank here in DC, someone shared with the group an article he read on the difference between the American and German work styles.  A German in the room could attest to the difference!  In making a conscious effort to be more efficient with email, I think I just might adopt a more direct, German approach. The article states:

Whereas an American would say, "It would be great if you could get this to me by 3pm," a German would say, "I need this by 3pm."

Click here to read Why Germans Work Fewer Hours But Produce More: A Study in Culture

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Sort of Fascinating Study Results on Email Behaviors

office-272813_1280Ancient European stone circles are fascinating.  Email behavior is not. However, the researchers at Yahoo Labs made email as fascinating as it can possibly be with a recent study of the email habits of 12 million users.

Read this article to learn the average length of email response time, average length of an email reply, and the best time of day to send an email if wanting a quick reply.

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

A day in the life of Kacy: How it all comes together, where it doesn't, my secret sauce, and the most fun job I've ever had

I'm an organizer so I blog about organizing and anything that can be related back to organizing.  I never stray: never assuming readers want to know what's in my fridge or medicine cabinet. I like to keep my platform pure and stick to what I know best. I was both nervous and excited when given an open invitation to write on the inner-workings of my business for my friend Racheal Cook'sblog tour.  I had my newsletter readers vote though on what they wanted to read and "A day in the life" was the clear winner.  This is a very transparent account not just of how my days flow, but where I know there's room for improvement. First, please join the blog tour here to read all 30 posts from 30 seasoned women business owners. Read yesterday's post from Cerries Mooney here and Jen Louden will post tomorrow here.

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Rise n Shine:

I've alway said, and am very serious about it: one of the best things about self-employment is sleeping in. I wish I was an early riser, but am not (yet). My alarm usually goes off at about 7:30am or 8am. 10 out of 10 mornings, I snooze it until my feet hit the ground at 8:00am or 8:30am. Every morning I tell myself tomorrow will be different.  It never is. Sometimes I beat myself up about it, comparing myself to the Forbes Magazine cover models who claim their secret sauce is a 5am alarm.  I'm learning though to just relish in the fact that I have a career that allows me the luxury of 8-9 hours of sleep!  If it's a rare morning where I have to arrive somewhere early, I have no problem waking much earlier.

Meditate first, no matter what:

If the alarm doesn't get me, it's the devastatingly handsome Bengal cat, Zucca, screaming in my face that does.  Right after feeding Zucca, I meditate for 20 minutes before checking email or any social media.  I nail this essential routine about 4 out of 5 weekdays.  I learned Transcendental Meditation a few years ago.  T.M. is a simple meditation technique that is done twice a day for 20 minutes.  I've slipped on the twice/day part (and yes, I do notice a difference), but am still quite good about getting in at least a morning meditation.  If that doesn't happen, I make sure to meditate early evening.  It settles everything in me, feeling like a shower for the brain. My clients are essentially hiring me to deliver a calmness to their lives.  It's important to me that I walk the walk and have a well from which to draw.  It's this early mediation that keeps me truly relaxed and centered in the face of the chaos I hang out in every day!

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Breakfast: I'm worthless if I'm hungry and I don't always have the luxury (or discipline) of lunch.  I'd rather have a wholesome, hearty breakfast and skip lunch, then skip breakfast and have a quick, unhealthy lunch on the go. Most mornings I make a big plate of eggs, greens and toast*. I'm not a coffee drinker because who needs coffee when the world has chai?!  A close Indian friend of mine taught me her family's chai recipe from scratch, so if I have time, I brew a pot of chai from fresh ingredients and a little treasure box of loose tea and spices.  That piping hot homemade cup is one of life's greatest pleasures. *It wouldn't be fair for me to not disclose that sometimes the first words out of my boyfriend's mouth in the morning are "how would you like your eggs?" I lucked out.

This is where the days become much less routine:

No-client zones: I never work Monday mornings or Friday afternoons. These are golden hours where I prep for the week and clean up emails from the week.  Monday mornings I have a Skype call with my assistant in Portugal.  These blocks of time are really just an email scramble - albeit a very productive one! I take care of the "Oh s#*t, I can't believe I haven't written them back yet!" emails.

Getting around in DC:

I live in Silver Spring, MD right on the Washington, DC line. Living inside the Beltway means that it can take me anywhere from 25min to an hour + to work with a client in VA. It may take 15 minutes to get to a DC client, and 45+ minutes to drive home. I have a unique schedule, but not a unique problem of having to schedule all activities around our legendary traffic.  It's a blessing when I have clients within a 5 mile radius!

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The ideal day: Driving out to the Shenandoah's, hiking, and unpacking a picnic at a winery. Oh, wait, I have a business to run. (This happened twice last week though when I stumbled across a blissful 5-day weekend…..a NYC trip fell through.)

I typically work with clients in 3 hour blocks.  I'm truly appreciative to be self-employed and busy - certainly a problem to have.  Hours spent with clients are my favorite part of the week. Lately I've been averaging 5-6 clients per week. I start anywhere from 9:00 am to 3:00pm.

An ideal day for me is one of these:

  • Working 9:30am - 12:30pm and work from home in the afternoon.
  • Going to yoga in the morning, having lunch at home, and working 2:00pm - 5:00pm.

Some version of this happens about twice/week.  I practice Ashtanga yoga on average 3x/week - twice on weekends and once during the week.  If I could just wake up earlier (see above), I could work yoga in 4-5x!

The rare "light" day: If I have no clients on the calendar, I catch up on my business and/or catch up on cleaning my house.  It's no surprise that I secretly love housekeeping…. so much so that it is my procrastination tool of choice. Can't think of what to title my newsletter? Let's dust the tables!  Stuck on how to craft that email I've been putting off?  Let's scrub the stovetop!  Thanks to my chores list though, I'm good at keeping this to a minimum, but it still happens. I cannot focus in a cluttered space.  Forget about sitting down to work if the sink isn't empty.

I sometimes get more done on days when I see a client than on days that are wide open. Thanks to the Pomodoro Technique and some very crafty to-do lists, I work very efficiently with limited blocks of time.  I'd like to be better at dividing work-at-home days into reactive work (responding to emails) vs. creative work (writing, planning, recording videos, etc.)  "Light" days sometimes feel like my busiest, with me realizing I'm still in my pjs at 5pm but have just moved mountains...

The full day:

Hours spent with clients are my favorite part of the week.
Hours spent with clients are my favorite part of the week.

I have the energy to work with two clients per day, but this requires two things: 1. A solid hour and a half in-between clients. 2. A delicious dinner and a margarita waiting for me at the end. Forget about blogging or responding to emails on these days. I can only pull this off 2 days/week max.  If I felt like client #2 was receiving a compromised service in any way, I wouldn't do it. Last week I worked 10:30am - 1:30pm and 3:00pm - 6:00pm.  Client #2 benefitted from an energized organizer fueled by her favorite lunch: an Indian buffet.  I start getting the shakes if I don't park myself in front of a bottomless vat of chicken tikka masala at least once per week.  That, literally, is my secret sauce.

Dinner: I eat around 7:00pm or 8:00pm. After finishing with my client(s) I usually have a good hour or two to work before I meet up with my boyfriend, a friend, or my family for dinner. I eat out more than I'd like to, but certainly cook more at home in the winter.

Late night: I used to work and email until midnight or 1:00am.  I hit a wall with that years ago though. I know I get fuzzy by 9pm, so plan accordingly, but still sometimes find myself getting the inbox down as late as 11:00pm.  My newsletter goes out on Wednesdays, so, most Tuesday nights I'm finishing up the posts so my assistant in Portugal can program it overnight.  Writing my newsletters and posts is actually quite enjoyable, I just wish I finished it up about 24 hours earlier.  I'm very firm about my rule of no Facebook after 10:00pm!  I read for about 15 minutes in bed before lights out at midnight.  Wish that were closer to 11:00pm.

The truth: Everything above is true, but for it to read even truer, every other sentence should read "Reply to emails." For every billable hour, I probably work five hours behind the scenes. I feel like I spend my life on email and I'm not sure how to change this.

I'm a very good organizer and get a tremendous amount done to reach those who need me the most, but the emails run me down.  The days I throw my hands up and don't respond to emails, it piles up and my heart sinks. Right now I have 144 emails in my inbox, which is about 124 above my comfort zone.  I just spent a weekend enjoying myself: yoga, plant shopping, dinner out, yoga, and brunch, but now am looking at a Sunday night of getting that number down to 75 if I'm lucky.

I's a sunny 60 degree Sunday afternoon and I just sent my boyfriend home. He's been waiting to hike with me all day but I still have work to do even though I'm a better time manager than I've ever been.  Also, in the past year I have learned to delegate. I'd like to delegate more and manage time better on a macro scale. I cross a lot off my list day-to-day, but around the next bend will be setting bigger project goals and setting aside days to execute them.  When I've done this, I've shocked myself at how quickly I can produce. I've pulled a lot off in the last few months and am now confident that with short deadlines I can complete anything.

I started my organizing business in 2001.  Many of the last 14 years were spent wanting so badly to "be busy," but I just didn't know what that was and admittedly didn't always have the motivation to do it when the path was clear.  I've sent out countless notes in bottles and now that they're floating back to me in the form of magnificent professional opportunities, I'm working my tail off.

It feels like every week something rolls in that just knocks the socks off of the people close to me. (I don't share a ton on social media, so I have a lot brewing that only those close to me hear about).  My good friend Lauren Fritsch also wrote an article as part of this blog tour: More Than Enough. In it she talks about feeling like she hasn't accomplished enough even though she has recently achieved so many of the specific goals she set years ago. I relate. I sometimes feel like I'm making up for lost time. I recently told my ever-patient boyfriend, "To some extent this will probably never end. I'll reach a goal and want more because I'm learning that it's about the thrill of the ride."

I get that building a business takes work.  I'm fortunate to have found work I love at age 21 in 2001.  I am doing my best and am starting to feel very proud of myself.  A large percentage of my to-do lists are tasks I enjoy. I know I'll hit my stride with better delegating of everything else.  If emailing at midnight every now and again is the worst of my troubles, then I'm very blessed.  It's good to be Kacy Paide.

So, it is a beautiful day for hiking, but it's also a beautiful day for sitting on my couch with my windows open and blogging about doing the work I love.  This past weekend someone asked me: "What is the most fun job you've ever had?"  The answer was easy: "This one."

Thank you for reading. Enough about me!  Did anything surprise you in this post?  What routines do you have in place that help you to protect your personal time?  Is there anything else you'd like to know about how I run my business?  Like this departure from organizing advice? Please share in the comments!  I'll do my best to answer questions in future posts if I can't fully answer in comments.

Marie Kondo Folding Video in New York Magazine

I just love organizing superstar author Marie Kondo more and more.  She teaches us to respect our things, let joy be our guide, and how to fold our undies.

If you've finished your copy of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and are jonesin' for another Kondo hit, read this article in New York Magazine. There's a gem hidden inside: a video of Marie breaking down how to fold your unmentionables!

kacyRound
kacyRound

Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Asian Efficiency Podcast Interview

the-productivity-showI was interviewed by Zach Sexton of productivity site Asian Efficiency. I tend to give the same answers over and over again when being interviewed, but Zach somehow managed to pull a lot fresh ideas from me.

You'll learn the one question to ask yourself about every sheet of paper, as well as the only three places paper should be.

Please listen here!  It's only 30 minutes.

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

[VIDEO] How to Organize Your Morning Routine

I filmed this video from a client's home office. I helped her get a wrangle on the first 20 minutes of her morning, to set the tone for the rest of her day.

This is how we did it, using a visual tool to help it stick.

Do you have a visual way of remembering your morning routine? Comment below if so.

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Newsflash: Clutter kills Persistence

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Organized spaces sometimes get a bad rap for killing creativity, but experience had me suspecting there was another side to that coin. Turns out there is.

The Harvard Business Review recently conducted a study that revealed that though disorder can encourage creativity and relaxation even, it kills focus & persistence. Read the full story here.

Photo credit: 55Laney69 @flickr

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

My 3 Words for 2015

Back in December I shared with you Chris Brogan's blog post on how and why he picks three words to shape his year, in place of a resolution.  Immediately upon reading it, two words came to me: green and reach.  Then I stalled for a month.

The third jumped out at me just yesterday as I was watching this video on how a man spent an entire year offline.

So, here are my three words for 2015:

Green - This is twofold: I want to eat more green foods and spend more time outdoors.

Reach - I want to get creative in reaching more people with my work.

Offline - I won't be taking a year off the internet, heck, probably not even a weekend, but I want to choose offline as much as I choose online.

What are your words?  Only have one or two? Please share in the comments here!

kacyRound
kacyRound

Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Notebook Hack - The Analog Evernote

Evernote too techie for you? Still need to put pen to paper?

Check out this clever notebook hack that organizes bits of information (not as well as Evernote, but) better than a wad of notes at the bottom of your bag.  Click here to learn this simple system over at the HighfiveBlog.

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kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Choose 3 words to shape your 2015

Khajuraho_-_Kandariya_Mahadeo_TempleThe 2015 wall calendar mentioned here has built in room to utilize Chris Brogan's ritual of choosing three words to shape your year.

Some of his words from years past have been Believe, Practice, Untangle, and (my favorite) Temple.

Read Chris' article on how to choose your 3 words for 2015 here.

I can't say I have my 3 words yet, but by the 1st I will, and I'll share them with you.

What words come to mind for your 2015?  Please share in the comments!

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

I love this Year At-A-Glance Wall Calendar

CalendarWhat do you get when a productivity expert designs a wall calendar? The Now Calendar This calendar is unlike any wall calendar I've seen, asking you to write down theme words for the year, month, and week.

It's not going to replace your planner or digital calendar, but can provide an added layer of motivation and meaning to your plans.

Check out how creator Mike Vardy of the Productivityist uses his by clicking here.

Santa, I want one.

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Watch my client's tour of her sticky note project planning wall

I was thrilled to show up to my new client's home in Oakland, CA a few weeks ago to see that she had watched my video on how to tackle to-dos with a project post-it wall and used it create her own!

Want to create your own personalized project wall?  Watch Michele's tour below:  

 

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Not using a digital calendar yet? Here's my favorite paper planner

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 1.26.06 PMI've been using a digital calendar for years, but in the years leading up to the transition, I used the Quo Vadis Trinote Planner. I've recommended it twice in the past week to clients. I like it because it's thin, has a full-month view, allows you to visually block chunks of time, and has pretty cover options.

If my clients are searching for a smarter planner, you might be too. If a paper planner still floats your boar, don't crumble under the peer pressure to go digital! If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Purchase the QuoVadis Trinote here.

kacyRoundOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Great interview on how to easily change habits

leo babautaThis weekend I watched a video interview with Zen Habits' Leo Babauta as entertainment while baking. I admire everything this guy writes on his incredibly minimal blog and it was nice to finally put a face to the name.

Friends, this is one of the more refreshing voices on the internet. He is as pleasant to listen to as he is to read. Click here to watch the interview on how to adopt good habits.

Only have a minute? Listen to 13:00 - 14:23 to learn to use "habit sprints."

What good habit would you most like to implement in life or in the next few days? Tell me here.

 

Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. SheKacy Paide works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

Tour the four best task management apps

Task management apps seem to multiply by the day, but my favorite productivity experts Steve Dotto and Mike Vardy have selected their top four and give a simple tour of them in their webinar.

I actually watched the entire thing, which is remarkable considering I'm not at all a webinar junkie.

 

New Headshot w_posterOffice Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper. She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking. Reach her at 202.262.1207 and kacy@theinspiredoffice.com. Learn about Skype consultations here. Watch video lessons on office organizing here. Receive your free list of 100 Ways to Organize Your Office at www.theinspiredoffice.com

 

 

Say this out loud before getting out of your chair

At some point in an organizing project, I pause and make a list of all of the outstanding projects that remain.  The items are usually accompanied by little square checkboxes.  Checking these off becomes the goal of our remaining time together.  The side effect of this cure is that many clients tend to start bouncing from task to task.  We may be designating categories for wall file pockets when locating the label maker sends them over to organize the supply drawers.  Or, we may be clearing off a space in front of the computer screen when unearthing that unpaid bill sends them off to sort every bill in the office.

This is when I politely say, "Lets finish this first."  It's these four little words that immediately straighten our path.

Clients often tell me they have trouble getting started.  What I've come to notice is that the real culprit isn't getting started on an organizing project, but rather, finishing the one that has been started.  When eight projects are started and none are finished, it gives the illusion of nothing being started.  Let completion be your goal.  

Which is the best project to complete first?  The one you are working on in this moment.  If you're in the middle of compiling today's to-do list, finish that before checking email.  If you just threw some receipts on your desk, sort and file those before pulling every paper out of your tote bag.

"Let's finish this first" is all it takes for my clients to sit back down and give that almost-done task the last five minutes it needs.  Next time you find yourself a little over-motivated, say it out loud.  It's what you'd here from me if I were sitting right next to you.

Do you have trouble finishing what's in front of you?  Have you ever been frustrated at how much time you spend organizing, only to look at an office full of half-started projects?  Do you have ideas for staying focused while working or organizing?  Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Office Organizing Expert Kacy Paide loves to do what most people hate: organize offices & paper.

She works with folks who are desperate for a more functional, more beautiful, more inspiring office. Kacy has been a Professional Organizer since 2001 and has worked with over 500 clients. Call her crazy, but she loves a good mess and wants to fix yours. Learn her time-tested solutions in her eBook, The Inspired Office: Organize Your Life One Paper at a Time. Based in Silver Spring, MD, Kacy is nationally available for consulting & speaking.