Archive for August, 2010

Own Your Time

August 27, 2010

One of my favorite books on time management and productivity isn’t the newest one on the market. It was re-written in 2005 after its original writing in 1996 for the Hertz Corporation and its then struggling employees.  In “Organizing for Success, author Ken Ziegler includes a fantastic quote that I often share with my audiences: “From time waste there can be no salvage. It is the easiest of all waste and the hardest to correct because it does not litter the floor.”   — Henry Ford.

With that, I usually hear some dreadful groans and then the room grows dimly silent — as the truth of that statement is sobering, given the frenetic way in which we live our lives today. “However,” I go on to encourage my audience, “Time CAN BE the great equalizer.” It is simply a series of CHOICES. Your time IS truly your own.

Whether you are seeking to gain control of your time for purposes of time management, efficiency, achieving goals or  improving your quality of life, make good and wise choices each day, my friends. Then reap the rewards of owning your time.


Best back to school organizing tip?

August 20, 2010

Back to school means shopping of all kinds. Kiddos grow fast and that can mean a variety of new purchases will be made some time in late summer to prepare for the school year. Clothes and shoes from the prior year have been outgrown.

Typically, new backpacks, lunch bags or boxes, and school supplies must also be purchased. Depending on the number of students, this can make for quite a few shopping bags arriving into the family home. Before attempting to put any new purchases away, ALWAYS remember the ONE-IN / ONE-OUT RULE. For every new item purchased, one old one must go out! Before putting away those 4 new pairs of jeans and 1 pair of khakis for young Parker, Mom and Dad, remember to make certain that a total of 5 pairs of pants go OUT!


  • can be handed down to a smaller sibling
  • can be given to a younger or smaller family or friend
  • can be donated
  • or if they are really stained, soiled  or torn, simply thrown away

When young Parker has less clothing clutter to sort through and his room and clothing storage is kept simpler, he will be more likely to engage in the process of getting himself dressed and ready for school.

Happy, calm mornings result in better relationships between parent and child. Parker is off to a good start and ready to be an engaging student!

Mom and Dad, remember to apply this ONE-IN / ONE-OUT rule to your own purchases as well, throughout the year!

The Key to Accomplishing a Major Task?

August 17, 2010

The key to accomplishing a major task you ask? Realizing it is merely the sum of several small tasks.

Change your mind-set from, “I only have 20 minutes” to “I have 20 minutes to work on my ideal (*) project. What part of this project can I complete?

If a project seems long in duration or burdensome, break it down in your mind or visually. If you are visual, mind-map it on paper or on your computer. i.e., Q: “How do you eat an elephant?” A: “One bite at a time.”

 (*) Your ideal project may vary from writing your business plan for the coming year to stripping the wallpaper from the dining room and repainting. Whatever your project, apply these principles for productivity.

5 Must Haves for Your Kid’s Dorm Room

August 14, 2010

Whether you and your spouse are crying on one another’s shoulder or HIGH-FIVING behind Junior’s back, one way or another, you’ve got to embrace reality. Your baby is going off to college. It seems like just yesterday you just brought him home. My sister has always said she believes “the terrible teen years” are God’s way of preparing parents’ hearts so they don’t literally break when kids DO go off to college.

Face it, your kiddo needs to be ready for this new phase of life. Hopefully you’ve been doing much of the groundwork over the past 18 years, instilling morals and values. The rest is reminders and lists and such. One lesson I learned from my two and the entire process — don’t try to get TOO involved NOW (which was hard for me as a hands-on, generally organized Mom). Now is a time for them to work with their new roommate(s) on some problem-solving, explore their new environments, learn new rules and regs, and test their wings.

That said, I’m sure Junior won’t mind you helping him to “GEEK-UP HIS DORM ROOM” with some of the latest technology available as seen on CBS Early Show this morning:
5 Gadgets to Geek-Up Your Kid’s Dorm

If your student needs a little help, but perhaps is not particularly open to listening to Mom or Dad at this time in his life, consider working with a skilled Professional Organizer during this transition to provide him with all the tools he needs to get a good start!