Thursday, January 28, 2010

Working the Plan

You go into the living room and think-"This room is a mess. I have got to tackle this today." You pick up some magazines and put them into the magazine holder. You pick up your dirty dishes from this morning and take them to the kitchen. You notice that your dishes from last night are still in the sink. You load the dishwasher and wash the pan. When you put the pan away you notice that the plant on the counter looks like it needs water and if it does, probably your other plants need water too. You fill a container and start to water all of your plants. When you get to the office you notice that one of the plants has dropped some leaves. You pick up the leaves and carry them to the compost container in the kitchen. While in the kitchen, you realize that you are hungry. You look in the cupboards and the fridge and realize there is nothing there you want. You put together a grocery list and plan to pick up a sub at the deli as well. You do your shopping. When you return you put your groceries away and munch on your sub. You do not want to forget your cloth grocery bags at home so you decide to hang them on the door handle in the living room to remind you to get them to the car. As you hang them on the handle you look around the living room and think-"This room is a mess!"
If you don't have a plan for your day, the day can be quickly gone and you have no idea what you did.
First thing (after coffee) write down the big tasks you want to accomplish that day. Decide when you want to do them and how long it will take to complete the tasks. Don't forget time taking items like lunch. Allow transition times between tasks. Use a timer to keep yourself focused and to realize how long you are working on the task. You will surprise yourself with how much more you accomplish! Congratulate yourself and celebrate at the end of your day.

Jonda S. Beattie
Professional Organizer
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Friday, January 22, 2010

Tax folder

This month the working zone is the office. Now is the time you clear out and update all of your files in this area. One of the files you should have is a tax file folder. I suggest that it is a bright color or at least a different color than your other folders. I also like this folder to be either the first or last folder in the drawer. All through the year as anything comes into your office that relates to your taxes you just drop it into this folder. If you have a business and keep up with receipts for your business, you might want an envelope for each month to hold the receipts. Other items you might drop in the folder are your monthly mortgage statements (if you get a cumulative one at the end of the year then you can let the others go), Ad Valorem tax receipt, monthly statements for brokerage accounts, bank statements, HUD settlement statement if purchasing or selling a house, receipts for home purchases that may qualify for energy credits or any major home improvement, college tuition and child care receipts, receipts for charitable contributions, and your end of year-last paycheck stub. About now all of your tax statements are arriving so drop them in too.
When it is time to do your taxes or gather the material for your accountant, you pull out your folder and look over last years tax form to see if you have everything. If you start this folder now (and mine already has items in it for 2010 taxes), life will be much simpler next tax season.

Jonda S. Beattie
Professional Organizer
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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Book Launch


My Book Launch for From Vision to Victory A Workbook For Finding a Simple Path to an Organized Home, at Eagle Eye Book Shop was quite a success. I really appreciate all of you who came out in the cold, icy weather to attend. I enjoyed giving the presentation and answering the questions. I loved that so many of you bought books and had them signed. It was a really special day for me that culminated a lot of time and effort. It was great that so many of the people who contributed to the book were there. My Goals Group was there, some of my BNI (Business Networking International) group, as well as my graphic designer-Brenda Sanders, my media organizer-GiGi Miller, my proof reader-Sue Clements, and my business coach-Wendy Watkins. Judith Kolberg, my writing coach, could not attend as she was in New Orleans, but she sent a card. My son, Darin, attended as did many of my friends. It was a real celebration for me. I am now enjoying selling my book on my website. At some point running to the post office to mail off ordered books may become tiring-but not yet!

Jonda S. Beattie
Professional Organizer
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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Office zone

January is the perfect month to organize your office zone. I organize my office every January. By the time a year has passed, it really needs a new look and feel. First I reflect on how I want my office to look and feel for the coming year. I also reflect on what worked last year and what isn't working so well now in my space.
Personally, I want an uncluttered yet warm look. I want to see things that remind me of my yearly goals. I want to feel on top of my business and life when I am working in my office. I want my current work to be at my fingertips. I want clear open spaces and uncluttered, uncrowded files.
How am I going to make this happen? This month has 5 weekends. The first weekend I cleared away my Christmas decorations so now I have 4 left. My office has 4 walls. Each weekend I will divide my office into a wall section and analyze and attack that section. This first week I will tackle the wall that has my desk. I will clear everything off and out of my desk and give it a good cleaning. Then I will decide what goes back into the desk and what gets purged. My files will get cleaned out. Many items will be archived elsewhere and therefore my file drawers will have room again for new material. I will celebrate by putting fresh flowers on my desk and next week I will tackle another wall zone. By the end of the month, my office zone will be fresh and ready for the new year.

Jonda S. Beattie
Professional Organizer
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