Happy Monday! It's the start of a new week, let's take charge of our email!
Is your email inbox a place where all the messages you've ever received all live together in equal importance? Can you find the message you need, when you need it? No? Let's fix that. Here are a few simple steps you can take today to get control of your inbox. I recently started using this system in my email inbox and it has been fantastic!!
Step 1: Reframe how you think of your email inbox. Let's think of it like your physical mailbox. When you check your mailbox, you go to it and remove everything inside to be sorted and acted on, right? We don't keep everything inside there returning to it over and over to search for that one important item. If every message stays in your inbox it will be difficult to find what you need, and actions you need to take may be forgotten.
Step 2: Categorize your inbox. When you get a new message, ask yourself a question - Where does this go, or what action do I need to take? There are 5 main categories your email message may fall into. Let's get into those now.
1. Junk - we all get plenty of spam messages (just like in your physical mailbox!). These should be deleted immediately. They are visual clutter with no benefit to you.
2. Action - any message that requires some action by you. Examples: an email needing a reply, or a notification that you need to update your autopay information. These are all those messages that have become tasks for your To Do list.
3. Waiting On - these are messages that you have acted on and are now waiting on a resolution or response. Example: you place an online order and have received the confirmation. Now you are waiting for the item to arrive.
3. To Read - this category includes any message that you want or need to read at a future time.
4. Active Projects - this is for any current project you're working on. Move all the messages related to it into this folder for easy access. Create subfolders if you are an overachiever with multiple projects going. 😉
5. Reference - these are messages that do not require any action, but are informative and you may want to access them in the future. Create subfolders here as needed.
Step 3: Create new folders for the categories that are relevant for you. Tip: if you use Gmail and want these folders to stay shown at the top, put a symbol in front of each word. Example: !Action @Waiting On #To Read I'm not sure if this works for Outlook. There is also a great way in Gmail to link your action messages to your task list. Let me know down below if you would like a future post about this.
Step 4: Sort that inbox! As new messages arrive ask yourself - where does this go?
Will you give this system a try? Tell me in the comments! You've got this!! 😃👍
Happy Monday! How is your #Staycation2020 going? A good remedy for anxiety is action. Let’s tackle that junk drawer today. ✂️ 🖇It will feel so good to be able to find what you need when you need it! First step - this drawer could use some rebranding. Why not start calling it your Supply Drawer? That’s really what you want to keep in it, right? Not junk.
Now we can get started with my version of the S.P.A.C.E. method.
1. Sort 2. Purge 3. Assign A Home 4. Contain 5. Enhance (with labels and other fanciness).
Share a pic of your Supply Drawer in the comments and inspire someone else! 😃👍
Good morning! Is it snowing where you are?? ⛄️
It’s National Clean Off Your Desk Day! While you’re stuck inside, take the opportunity to create a space that you love to be in.
A few simple ways to start:
1. Sort what’s there into categories.
2. Shred or recycle outdated paperwork.
3. Toss old pens.
Happy Clearing! 📝😀
I do this one regularly, but realized I’ve never shared it. After you are done taking notes in your paper notebook, save them into Evernote! Now they can be searched later. You don’t have to choose one or the other...paper or electronic. You can have the benefits of both!! 👍😊
It’s Day 22 in the July Clutter Independence Challenge!
Let’s take a look at all those electronic cords and accessories. Somehow they always multiply in the drawer. Here’s a before and after of the electronic charging cords in our desk drawer. This is a way more interesting than the bag of 5! extra cords we had living there. Those will definitely be heading out of here! This was the perfect opportunity to try out these fun cord labels, too. 😀
Do your cords multiply when your back is turned? How do you keep them under control?
Day 9 in the July Clutter Independence Challenge has arrived!
Today we move into the home office or desk space. I have been dreading this day a little bit (ok, a lot!). This is a hardworking space. It needs to have workspace, hold gift wrapping/giving supplies, shipping supplies, work stuff, books, memorabilia, photos and, and, and....you get the idea. Our office can very quickly become a black hole especially for items I "think" I may use on a future project. Here are my resulting donations bags. Yup, I was tough this time and finally parting with all of these things that someone else can actually use!
Do you have an office space that needs some love? Share your bag of donations in the comments and encourage someone else!
It's that time of year again...the dreaded tax season. Why must we call it a season, that word should be reserved for happier times, like Christmas! So, are you ready? If not, don't stress, you can get started right now with just a few steps. You've got this!
1. Decide - Choose whether you will meet with a tax preparer, or file your taxes yourself.
2. Schedule - If you will be meeting with someone, now is a great time to schedule that appointment. Or, if filing yourself, set aside time on your calendar.
3. Gather - Grab an empty folder or a large paper clip will do, and begin gathering all of those important papers and receipts to keep them together. Now, when it is time to meet with your tax accountant, or file yourself, you will be ready.
For children or adults, desks can play important roles in everyday activities. Design your desk to function for the work you do, and the work will become easier. Here are some steps to get started....
**Empty all drawers and surfaces.
**Wash down the desk with an appropriate cleaner.
**Sort items by function and get rid of anything that is broken or no longer needed.
**Use drawer dividers to contain items returning to the desk.
**Store items in the desk that are actually used at the desk. 😉
**Hang shelves above or near the desk for storing extra items.
**Hang a magnet, or cork board to post important notes to get them off of the desk top.
**Use Velcro straps to reduce cord tangles.
What desk will you tackle today? Please share in the comments below!
Home offices / work spaces should provide room in which you can peacefully and efficiently work. But, clutter can stand in the way (literally!) between you and that goal. Make your workspace work for you by organizing the office clutter.
1. Use filing cabinets (or carts) well, labeling each file folder and using a system that works for you (i.e. alphabetizing, categorizing, or color-coding).
2. Use file boxes to store older files that don't need to be immediately accessed. Store these boxes in a location other than the office, such as in an attic, closet, or garage.
3. Shred all documents that you don't need anymore. Here is some more info from the IRS on how long papers should be kept: https://www.irs.gov/…/small-…/how-long-should-i-keep-records
**If you discover you have a stockpile of papers, check out this week's Tuesday Tip and grab the coupon for free shredding at Office Depot!
4. Incorporate AT LEAST one comfort item, such as a radio, favorite picture, or stress ball that will help make work more enjoyable.
What item in your work space makes you smile? Please share in the comments below.
Left to their own devices, papers could take over the world. I am here to help make sure the papers don't win!
Happy Thursday, my friend!
Today I am pondering bookshelves and wanted to share some ideas. Bookshelves are for more than just books! Using them to their fullest potential will help you get your home organized. They come in all sizes and styles and can be used in almost any type of room. They are a really fantastic storage solution.
Here are some ideas of what you can store there:
-Board games, puzzles, and DVDs
-Photo albums and favorite pictures
-Small potted plants or containers with pet items like leashes and toys
-Catchall containers for items such as vehicle keys or cell phone accessories
-Baskets with phone books, address books, or pens and notepads
-Decorative containers with household items such as remotes and flashlights
-Gifts for upcoming birthdays, and events
Even if your home is short on closet and cabinet space you can stay organized by using bookshelves as sturdy, and often beautiful, pieces of functional storage.
Below is a pic of how this solution has done the trick in my own office closet. What do you keep on your bookshelves?? I would love to hear about it in the comments.
I hope you are doing well and are still focused on getting organized! Today's tip is to organize your closet doors.
The interior side of a closet door can be the prime location for thorough organization. Hang a plastic or canvas pocket organizer on the closet door and use it all year round to help keep items in their place.
-During cold months of the year, use the pockets in a coat closet for hats, scarves, pairs of mittens and gloves, and even extra ice scrapers.
-In warmer months, fill the pockets with flip-flops, suntan lotion, swimming goggles, deflated pool toys, and bug spray.
-If you have kids, each child can have one or two rows of pockets for their own items, and won't have to struggle to find what they need on the shelves.
-An office/guest room door can also be a great place to store office supplies.
-The bathroom door can be used to corral nail polish/supplies, and hair bands.
Pocket organizers are inexpensive ways to utilize space efficiently and keep all of those small items stored away, making your day just a little easier. Here are a few pics for inspiration.
Which door in your home will become the perfect storage space for you? Do you use pocket organizers? I would love to hear about it in the comments below! :D
Good morning! I hope you are doing well and are still focused on getting organized!
Let's chat about office clutter. Home offices should provide space to peacefully and efficiently work, but clutter can stand in the way between you and that goal. Make your workspace work for you by organizing office clutter. It makes no difference whether you have a dedicated room or a simple corner. Below are a few ideas and photos to give you inspiration in your own space.
-Use filing cabinets well, labeling each file folder and using a system that works for you (color-coding different categories can be really helpful!).
-Use that vertical storage! This is one of my favorite tips for any space. An over-the-door shoe rack can effectively contain all of those small office necessities.
-Shred all documents that you don't need anymore.
-Incorporate at least one comfort item, such as a radio, a plant, favorite picture, or something to make you smile like an "easy" button.
What can you do with all those confidential papers that you are ready to let go of? You don't want to recycle them, but there is too much to shred yourself. Confidential Data Disposal to the rescue!
A client recently used this great service to eliminate many boxes of private papers. They were on time, fast, and economical. Highly recommended!
Happy Thursday (its almost Friday)!!
It can be tempting to toss the daily mail and incoming papers onto a pile each day. Spending an extra minute, though, to sort it as it comes through the doors will have many benefits.
1. Invest in a small organizing system, such as a small bin with dividers, a divided basket, or a file folder with several pockets.
2. Place the organizer in an accessible location (the best is usually where the pile of mail sits). :)
3. Take a minute to sort the mail by priority or type. You don't need to read it all, just decide to which category it belongs.
4. Once a week grab each stack and act on, or file, each item.
It will only take moments each day to sort incoming mail, but that effort will help you pay bills on time, have a more organized calendar, and less clutter!
My basket sits on the kitchen counter for easy access. Where will you place the paperwork system in your home? I would love to hear!
For many homes the problem is the same: too many electrical cords running every which way, cluttering space and twisting through our lives. You can reduce that cord clutter in a few easy steps.
-First, unplug and identify each cord, checking for nicks or cuts that might cause it to be a danger to people and pets.
-Use simple file folder sticky labels (or your favorite kind) to clearly label to what each cord belongs so that when multiple items are plugged-in next to each other there is no more following the cord to determine the owner.
-Where cords are lying along the ground, especially in multiples, use plastic tubing around the cords to conceal and contain the cord clutter.
Which cords will you corral today?