Too much to do is a common problem for today’s working women and men, especially those involved in management and knowledge occupations. Time management is crucial for these professionals! (Examples of knowledge occupations: Managers, Programmers, architects, CEOs, healthcare & support, and so on.)
If having too much on your plate is getting discouraging or frustrating, trying a few time management strategies I explore in the article will provide relief.
I worked with a company and the 2 top administrators, a man and a woman, both felt overwhelmed by all the tasks on their plates. I posed a few exploratory questions to ’Jake’ and learned his schedule was completely overbooked.
“How about delegating some of your tasks to other people here?” I asked.
In this case, both admins said No, it would not be appropriate to delegate several of his responsibilities to others in the company. They felt those people already had enough on their plates.
So, what is left? Any other strategies we can try for someone with too much on their plate?
Well, like Mom always said, you’ve got to clean your plate! And I mean that literally.
It’s time to create some white space.
It’s important to recognize, no matter who you are or what your job is, that things will come up during the day and you need to plan room for them in your schedule.
The only way to do this is by creating white space into every day.
And the way that works best is if you have a good handle on how long your planned goals for the day will take. That leads us to the first way to reduce stress: Planning.
Many time coaches call this time estimating. It’s something I teach in my time management seminar and in private time coaching sessions. A simple but effective concept, which you can do by timing how long different, often repeated tasks take you. Like creating an agenda for an upcoming staff meeting, calls to clients, following up on a lead, or tracking numbers for last week, for example.
How will time estimating help you be realistic about what you can accomplish in a day?
How will this, in turn, decrease stress?
It is helpful to track how much time each day the interruptions and crises take. Try tracking these for a week or two, then average it. While you’re at it, observe what time of day have the most interruptions. Then you can plan for these disruptions and a lot of the guesswork will be gone. You’ll have a good idea how many interruptions come and also, what time of day they tend to happen.
Can you see how this would be helpful to you? Try this strategy of actually scheduling enough unstructured hours into your day so that when emergencies come up, you already have time planned and can take it all in stride.
I guarantee your level of stress will decrease!
And one other thing you may be wondering: what happens if I don’t get the amount of interruptions I planned for? This is a good situation to be in!
In that case, planning a list of other things you’d LIKE to get done that week would be handy. I call this an opportunity list.
We all know there is no shortage of things to do. That’s why you’re reading this, yes? So, here’s a challenge for you: Start adding more white space to your day; at first, add 30 minutes, then an hour. Gradually increase it. Remember white space does not have to be one block of hours, you can disperse it throughout the day.
Let me know how this helped you! Once you’ve tried these strategies, reach out to me on FB or Instagram.
Or comment below. Thanks!
RESOURCES: https://jkglei.com/white-space/ Why you need white space in your daily routine by Jocelyn Glei
Remember the boy scout motto? Be prepared.
I find the earlier I start preparing for the holidays, the more I enjoy the season. Since I’m a Christian, I’ll concentrate on the Christmas holiday. Whatever your religious faith, December is a busy time of year and most people around you vibrate with stress. If you follow the following tips, your stress will be eased and the holidays will be more fun! Remember a little bit of planning goes a long way.
Try and set aside 30 minutes at the end of November. Then brainstorm all the things you have to do or want to do before the big holiday. This can usually be done in one sitting. Then look at your list, cross off a few of your most dreaded tasks, especially time-consuming ones. If it absolutely HAS to be done, it doesn’t mean you have to be the one to do it (the tips will explain). To make it easier next year, save your list on your computer and file it under a folder named CHRISTMAS. You’ll thank yourself later!
This is our family’s Christmas Jar. All year we save our coins in a cute jar with a nutcracker lid. In December, we count the coins and find a local family in need to give it to. We put the jar and the book The Christmas Jar by Jason F. Wright on their doorstep, knock and run. Most of the time we add a turkey or a ham for their dinner and a family gift like a game we enjoy. It’s the best feeling.
The kids really love this tradition. I love it because it helps them develop compassion, generosity, and realize how blessed they are.
Just for you: See how many things you can cross off your list with my Simplify the Holidays guide, a free gift! This guide lists Grants Pass and Medford, Oregon resources for outsourcing holiday decorations, lights, gift-wrapping, Sendout Card services, and more! https://efficientspacesco.c.wpstage.net/simplify-holidays/
For some Christmas budgeting help: https://efficientspacesco.c.wpstage.net/2015/11/tis-season-spend-wisely/
And for some helpful holiday tips and a fun Organizer’s 12 days of Christmas poem: https://efficientspacesco.c.wpstage.net/2017/12/12-days-christmas-tips/
Can you believe it is almost September? It’s almost that time again, for kids, teens and college students to go back to school. If the thought of shopping for school supplies and clothing fills you with dread, I’ve got some pointers to save time and energy.
In the past, I have visited several stores to get the best deals for the long list of school supplies. I don’t do that anymore. It takes too much time. But I think it makes sense to find out which store has the lowest prices on the bulk of things you need, and purchase there.
One way I’ve found to make the back to school easier is to start preparing several weeks early. Of course, being an organizer, I encourage you to take some inventory first. And that means LISTS!
This song is all in good fun. When I work with clients, they purge all kinds of funky stuff, which I donate to thrift stores. So, once a year, I celebrate by having a little fun with the 12 days of Christmas poem. This new and improved 12 days has 12 tips to make your holiday prep less stressful!
On the 1st day of Christmas, my client gave to me: a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Take out one decoration that really inspires you. For me, a homemade advent calendar does the trick. Each pocket has 1 simple activity and a small ornament inside. Keep it simple, silly!
On the 2nd day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Do-ahead tip: take stock of your tape, wrapping paper and tag supplies. If you don’t have enough, put them on your shopping list!
On the 3rd day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Remember the movie Christmas with the Kranks? Don’t get stuck doing last-minute food shopping like Mrs. Krank. Plan the main dishes and the type of meat you’ll have, then include them on your shopping list too!
On the 4th day of Christmas, my client gave to me:
4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Speaking of Rolodexes: if you haven’t gotten cards out yet, it’s time to do it. One way I make this easier: Use Sendout cards. It’s a painless way to send out cards to the important people in your life. You make a card online, put in names and addresses, then they send it out. No licking envelopes! It costs about $1 per card & stamp. My Sendout cards contact: Teresa Ball: www.Sendoutcards.com/teresaball.
On the 5th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: To keep Christmas a happy, not stressful time, do something for someone else! Notice the decorations still left in boxes. You haven’t used them for several years but they are in good shape. Bag them up and stick them in your car to drop off at a thrift store. Know that another family in town will save money and use them to make a festive home!
On the 6th day of Christmas, my client gave to me:6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Don’t forget the cleaning: we don’t want to find sticky jelly beans staining our couch cushions! Just like everything else, make a plan for when to clean certain areas of the house. If you’re having guests one night, remember don’t spend too much time on the floors, they’re just going to get dirty again! Do a quick clean before and a thorough clean after!
On the 7th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Remember to keep it simple, silly, to KISS. Don’t overbuy, and stick to your list! I avoid the mall as much as possible by ordering gifts online. I find I don’t impulse buy online.
On the 8th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 8 singing fish, 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: If you’re planning to give cookie plates or simple gifts to friends, neighbors and teachers, order the supplies now. This year I’m keeping it simple and using an idea I found through Pinterest. Hint: Everyone, including teachers, loves chocolate. I literally KISS this Christmas with Hershey’s kisses. Here’s the link: https://www.pinterest.com/jennyrossomorin/christmas/
On the 9th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 9 card boxes, 8 singing fish, 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: First you get a trickle, then you get a flood right before the 25th. I’m talking about cards! Some easy display ideas: A simple Christmassy clothesline hung over a doorway or on a beam works well. I created my own compact display by tying ribbons to a decorated clothes hanger and using mini clothespins to attach the cards!
On the 10th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 10 pairs of glasses, 9 card boxes, 8 singing fish, 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: For glass ornaments, put delicate ornaments together, and use bubble wrap or brown packing paper to keep them safe (newsprint may rub off on ornaments). Or make your life even easier by investing in a nifty bulb storage container. Craft or home stores carry these.
On the 11th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 11 Eighties albums, 10 pairs of glasses, 9 card boxes, 8 singing fish, 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Don’t forget to make it fun—play music and movies! While you are wrapping or decorating, crank up the Christmas carols or The Messiah by the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square! A great way to store your holiday CD’s is a simple shoe box with a label. You can even store them with your Christmas decorations to save on shelf space during the year. (As long as the temperature doesn’t rise above 90 degrees in your storage area.)
On the 12th day of Christmas, my client gave to me: 12 fridge magnets, 11 Eighties albums, 10 pairs of glasses, 9 card boxes, 8 singing fish, 7 gift bags, 6 sticky jelly beans, 5 silly bands, 4 Rolodexes, 3 rubber chickens, 2 Kleenex boxes, and a pre-lit ceramic tree.
Tip: Christmas is 10 days away. If you’ve planned ahead and made your lists, purchased what you need and done some work, you are in a good place right now. If you are a procrastinator, you’ve waited to get started. Don’t panic. Just pare down your list of tasks as much as possible and outsource. Today is a great time to make some cookie dough, cook up a batch or two and freeze the remainder.
You can even deliver some to friends. I’m sure they will be thankful for you!
In the words of Tiny Tim: And God bless us, every one!
This spring, I wasn’t in tip-top shape. Even though I exercise 3x a week at the gym, I lacked stamina. So, when the trail dried out enough, Frank and I started hiking Dollar Mountain, a short walk from our home. I knew it would take conditioning to reach my ultimate goal: to reach the tower, about 3 miles round trip.
Now, a short walk sounds deceptively easy, but the walk TO the hill is one of the toughest parts. It resembles a ski slope in steepness.
So, I started small.
That first day, I huffed and puffed along the way. I have trained my dog Bella to pull me up the hill, which helped. (No, that’s not cheating!) Frank’s encouragement made a difference, as well as my competitive spirit to keep up with him.
The next time we climbed, I wanted to make it farther, to the gravel pit. But time constraints (a morning appointment) kept me from getting there.
To me, the gravel pit represents the halfway point, even though it’s more than halfway. That’s where the grueling final steep climb starts, about half a mile of steep gravelly slope. It’s also where I see the best views of countryside.
Next time we climbed it, I managed to get to the gravel pit. A small celebration for reaching the second milestone.
Then I didn’t hike it again for over a week and lost my momentum.
Today started out different. I told myself I would make it to the top. I had a good night’s sleep, my legs were rested, and the temps were just right—in the 50’s-60’s. (OBSTACLES REMOVED)
Frank, Bella and I started out well, though he had to wait for me a bit, the first steep climb up TO the trail seemed easier. I made sure to keep up Bella’s training to pull me up the steepest parts, which is just enough of a pull to give me that ‘extra push’.
I enjoyed the view as I caught my breath at our traditional resting point, which is the steepest bit of trail, near the beginning of the climb. From then on, the uphill isn’t as steep until the very end.
So, the trail goes up and down a bit in the next part, with some nice vistas of our green wooded hills and lots of birdsong. We enjoyed a companionable silence. As we came around a bend, the tower we’re aiming for came into view. With encouragement from Frank, and a quick conversation with my best friend, I made it to the gravel pit. By then Frank and I were deep in conversation, and I almost didn’t realize it as we started up the steep gravel slope.
As soon as I started to think how hard it is—right about the same time my glutes are burning, that’s when it starts to FEEL difficult. It’s amazing how the distraction of our conversation at the start of the gravel slope made the hill feel less difficult. I had Bella’s help on the final steep climb, though. Her little tug is just what I need to propel me to the top.
And YAY we are HERE! Touch the wire fence around the tower, because that makes it official (at least that’s what our kids tell us).
I bask in the morning, enjoy the view with my sweetheart, and gratitude fills me up. I did it!
What would have happened if Jenny made the goal to climb to the top the first day she hiked it? Setting an unrealistic goal will be discouraging if not attained.
What knowledge about myself is pertinent to planning how to reach the goal? This will be different for everyone. Ex: Jenny knows she will not push herself to the point of pain just to reach the top on the first day. She doesn’t like being sore for days afterward.
What obstacles do I face along the way, or perhaps even before I start?
Are there natural milestones on the way to my goal that I can use to mark my progress? A time, like a month, a distance, an accomplishment?
Who or what will motivate me along the way? Do I need encouragement, competition, a partner, etc.?
What assistance will I need to reach this goal? I had Frank encouraging me and Bella pulling me at times.
Do I have the knowledge or skill I need already? Or: What do I need to develop or learn to reach this goal?
Who do I know that has done something similar to what I am planning? Will I ask them to mentor me/ answer questions to help me along the ‘climb’?
Date: Wednesday, January 18 from noon to 2 p.m.
Location: True Juice, 124 NW ‘D’ Street, Grants Pass. Bring lunch or order one here.
Cost: $20 for this AMAZING 2-hour workshop! 2 for 1 offer: bring a friend and each get both workshops for $10! If you come solo and want just one workshop, it’s $10.
Speakers: (at 1 pm) Jenny Morin, Organizer & Coach; (at Noon) Doranne Long, Physical Therapist.
Get a copy of Your Body Book! Price: $ 16.99
“Have a magical morning!” is what we heard every day when we entered Disneyworld. Today, I have some tips to make mornings flow.
How can you avoid the mad dash that happens every day as you get the kids or yourself out the door? It’s stressful most days, and it feels rushed and frantic.
We all know the basics, eat a good breakfast, pick out an outfit, get dressed, and, if you get up early enough, exercise.
What about the other stuff? How can you prepare yourself for the day and get the kids, yourself and your spouse out the door without the mad morning scramble?
Now go put in a load of laundry. Yay! Don’t forget to plan when to take it out too. Start a habit for when to transfer the clothes to the dryer… or you’re gonna have to re-wash it tomorrow.
And don’t beat yourself up if you cannot manage to wake up earlier one morning. The routine here is the ideal. If you only have 15 minutes to get yourself ready on any given day, you’ve got to prioritize and pick the activities that are most rejuvenating for you in the morning. ALWAYS do #4, though. It will make you feel better, more put-together.
What activities do they have in the afternoon/evening: remind them and yourself.
I promise, when you follow these tips, most of your mornings will be calm, less stressful, and yes, even MAGICAL!
Get in, get done & get out . . . with 5 cool and EASY meals!
What do you do when you are out of milk and it’s only Wednesday? Don’t panic! A midweek shopping trip doesn’t need to take long, and you can quickly pick up enough for several meals by following this speed-shopping guide. Follow my shopping list to make five EASY weekday dinners too!
Here’s a tip you already know but don’t always DO:
“No matter how good your memory is, write a grocery list. Not only will it make sure you don’t forget things you need, it’ll more importantly deter you from buying the things you don’t need.” ~20 Simple Ways to Save Money on Groceries, Huffington Post.com
Did you know that people who shop with a list spend less than those who skip the list? That extra time in the store will cost you, literally. Wandering down every aisle leads to impulse buying.
So . . . shopping with a list will save you money! And we all like to save money, yes?
More MONEY & TIME-SAVING SHOPPING TIPS:
“The more aisles you walk down, the more likely you are to add things to your shopping basket that you hadn’t initially intended to buy. Shoppers who decreased the number of aisles they visited checked out with only half their items being unplanned purchases vs. 68% of items for those who visited most or all aisles in a shop, according to a Marketing Science Institute study.” ~ 29 Ways to Save Hundreds on Groceries, Time.com
Cool & EASY summertime dinner ideas:
Plan five dinners and shop for the ingredients. My choices for a hot, sticky summer week are some easy family favorites. Many of these are cool meals, just right for sizzling summer temps. Chicken pasta salad (one of my kids’ favorites), Hawaiian haystacks, Taco salad, Potato Pizza and BLT salad.
Shop first in the produce and bakery sections. Pick up a pound of seedless grapes, 3 large heads of Romaine lettuce, 6 tomatoes, 8 oz. cherry tomatoes, 5-10 lb. baking potatoes (pre-bagged is cheaper), and a bag of carrots. Add two baguettes to serve as sides for Taco salad and Chicken Pasta salad.
Next, hop over to the canned goods and dressing aisles. For Hawaiian haystacks, get pineapple chunks and canned chicken. For Taco salad, get some kidney beans. Potato pizza needs tomato sauce, and Chicken Pasta salad uses ranch dressing—a lot of it!
Shop the meat and cheese coolers. Get a Rotisserie chicken for Chicken Pasta salad, ground beef (or ground turkey) for Taco salad, bacon and mozzarella cheese for Potato pizzas, 2 lbs. chicken breasts for Hawaiian Haystacks, and more bacon for the BLT salad. I firmly believe you can never have too much bacon! Yum.
Also, grab Doritos, taco seasoning, Rotini noodles, slivered almonds, and rice if you don’t have it on hand.
And don’t forget the ice cream!
Find the complete recipes for these five yummy, easy dinners here: https://efficientspacesco.c.wpstage.net/2016/07/cool-easy-summer-salads/
Grocery store hacks, Real Simple, Jan. 2015, 110.