Organize 365 Podcast (general)

I’m excited to announce that next week I’m running a Back To School Blitz.

It’s a 5-day challenge designed to help get you ready for a really productive fall and fully prepared for the new school year.

So in this week’s podcast,  I talk all about the Back To School Blitz.

Why run a Back To School Blitz?

For me, the start of the school year signifies the start of my 12-month year.  I discussed this in podcast 134 where I explained that I have 3 different "mini new years" in my year.

It starts in September... the beginning of the school year, then January... the beginning of the calendar year, and finally June... the beginning of summer.

Each has a different set of possibilities, but September has the most possibilities for me. It's when I set the BIG goals for my year ahead.

In my opinion, it doesn’t matter if you’re not going to school, the beginning of the school year is when we should all get everything in order and set our goals for success.

Productivity starts with being prepared.

There are plenty of little things that we could do now to set ourselves up for a productive school year.

So, my 5-day Back To School Blitz is designed to help set everyone up for a productive school year... whether you go to school or not!

I’m more excited about doing it for myself than for my kids.

What is the Back To School Blitz?

It’s a 5-day challenge that you need to sign-up for here.

It’s delivered to you by email. Every day at 5am EST, you will receive checklists via email.

You should print a copy for everyone in your house who is taking part in the blitz.  For example,  I’ll print off three... one for me and one for each of my two children. Since my kids are teenagers, I’ll try and convince them to do the checklist themselves.

Don’t worry, the checklists are not lists of things to buy. In fact, my Back To School Blitz does not involve buying anything at all!

Instead, it’s all about decluttering, culling, and making inventories of what we have in our house so that in August we can go ahead and buy exactly what we need.  This will stop you from over or under buying things.

So here’s what it involves:

  • Monday: Clothing – Going through your closet and figuring out what you need, what needs altered, etc.
  • Tuesday: Set up a command center – A back to school Sunday Basket™ that you will set up next week and continue to use thereafter. It will help you take note of the various things that need to be done before going back to school (i.e., supply lists, school uniform, car pool arrangements, etc.).
  • Wednesday: Supplies – A supply list for your home or your home-based business. It’s the best time of the year to stock up on things like pens, binders, highlighters, etc.
  • Thursday: Personal grooming – Look at what you have and what you need. Schedule manicures, haircuts, other treatments, etc.
  • Friday: What does it take to get this family out the door? – Backpacks, lunches, purses, car, etc.

Since everything is delivered by email, you need to sign up.

In addition, every day I will go live on Facebook at 10:30am EST to provide support and share additional tips and advice.

Together, we are going to get our kids and ourselves ready for a really productive fall and new school year. Are you with me?

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/185

Direct download: Org365-185.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

It’s a rite of passage almost no one will escape: the difficult, emotional journey of downsizing your or your aging parents' home.

Here, nationally syndicated home columnist Marni Jameson sensitively guides readers through the process, from opening that first closet, to sorting through a lifetime's worth of possessions, to selling the homestead itself. Using her own personal journey as a basis, she helps you figure out a strategy and create a mindset to accomplish the task quickly, respectfully, rewardingly—and, in the best of situations, even memorably. Throughout, she combines her been-there experience with insights from national experts—antiques appraisers, garage-sale gurus, professional organizers, and psychologists—to offer practical wisdom and heartwarming advice so you know with certainty what to keep, toss or sell.

Downsizing The Family Home: What to Save, What to Let Go

Direct download: ORg365-184.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Doing laundry always seems like it takes a lifetime, doesn’t it?

But how long does it really take?

For this week’s podcast episode, I timed how long it took me to complete ALL of my laundry.

Over the course of a weekend, I used a stopwatch and I timed from when I began a laundry task to when I completed it. By doing this, I was able to get an accurate idea of how long completing all of my household laundry really took.

My Findings

The truth is, the actual tasks involved in doing laundry didn’t take up too much time.

Every time I went into the laundry room to complete a task, I was usually only in there for about 5-8 minutes.  So it really wasn’t taking me very long.

I discovered I was able to do 9 loads of laundry in only 61 minutes.

BUT... and this is a big but... the 61 minutes were spread over 3 days. So I pretty much felt like I spent 3 days in my laundry room!

So what I came to learn is that, while the tasks don’t take very long, laundry can seem so much more time consuming than it really is because it occupies so many of our thoughts as we are doing it.

I found I was always thinking about things like when the current load will be complete, whether I have gathered everything for the next load, where are the hangers, and so on.

My Laundry Tips

Fortunately, there are ways to save yourself both time and stress when it comes to your laundry.

Here are my top tips for making laundry easier:

  • Sort by weight – Instead of separating your laundry into loads by color, try separating them by how much each item weighs. Heavier items take longer to dry and lighter items take less time to dry.  This will save you drying time on those little loads. 
  • Difficult load first – We all have that load of laundry that is just more difficult than the rest. Do your most difficult load of laundry first and this will make the rest of your loads less stressful.
  • Multiple days of laundry – By spreading your laundry time throughout the week and doing some of the easier loads on weekdays (towels for example), you will save yourself time and stress on the weekends.
  • Set a timer – Every time you start a load of laundry, start a timer on your phone. By setting the timer for 45-50 minutes, it will help prevent you from forgetting about the laundry and losing track of time.

Of course, hiring someone else to do the laundry would be the ultimate time saver!  This might not be an option for everyone, but it’s definitely something to consider.

There may be no perfect solution to doing laundry, but I would LOVE to hear your suggestions for making laundry quicker and easier.

Please share your ideas in my Organize 365 Facebook Group.

A special thank you to this week’s podcast sponsor, TidyLiving!

Use the promocode ORGANIZE365 to save 10%

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/183

Direct download: Org365-183.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Whether you're keeping your kid's room clean or you have assigned them this very important task, it is essential to keep their room organized.

I dive deep into everything kids' clothes on the podcast this week.

This is a topic I've mentioned before. In podcast episodes #103 Bedroom Organization For Kids and #104 Clothing Organization For Kids, I discussed how to organize your bedroom and, more specifically, your clothing. It would be a great idea to listen to both of those episodes first since I have taken those principles and built upon them in this episode.

I like to view your kid’s rooms as their own mini apartments inside of your house.

In this episode, I focused on keeping kid’s clothing organized. This sometimes means sorting through both clean and dirty clothes strewn around their rooms, but there are some ways to help avoid this.

  1. Hang everything

Getting into the habit of hanging and folding clean clothes right after they leave the laundry room can cut down on the amount of clothes left all over their room.

I know for a lot of kids (particularly if they have ADHD) it’s VERY easy to get overwhelmed, especially with how many items can be found in their closet.

One organizing method that I have found to be helpful with my kids has been to hang up all of their shirts so that they can see what they have.

2.  Put hampers in each child's room. 

Another helpful practice to follow is designating a location for all the dirty laundry and actually putting it there! Ideally, this would be IN a laundry basket, but just having the dirty clothes all in one place will make a difference.

Once the clothes are separated, it’s time to organize them in a way that helps your kids!

 3. Next steps...

Now obviously, not everyone has the closet space to hang up all of their clothes. So what do you do if your child has a dresser?

I have created something that really helps with organizing clothes in drawers! It's a FREE set of printable icons that can be laminated and placed on the drawers of your child’s dresser to help them remember what is inside.

There are four different sets of icons designed for young boys and girls, as well as teenage boys and girls. You can mix and match the icons that you like.

These kid clothing icons will help your kids identify what is inside of drawers and bins, keeping them more organized.

In the podcast, I shared how I put these on a client’s closet drawers using the Command Hook double-sided adhesive strips. Did you know you can buy just the strips?!

To download ALL four sets of printable icons, click here.

And yes, ladies, you too can use these fun icons!

What about hangers?

The final tips I talk about in this episode are all about the hangers you use in your kid’s closet. It seems like a small detail, but using hangers that are all the same size and shape can make all the difference right from the start.

Once you have those matching hangers, get into the habit of taking out extra hangers and bringing them down to the laundry room for the next batch of clean clothes.

When I am organizing, I like to keep one white trash bag hanging in my closet for those hangers I know I am going to throw away. I also keep a black trash bag hanging in my closet for clothes that are going to be donated to Goodwill.

Of course, all of these tips for organizing your kid’s clothing can also be applied to your own clothes, too.

Happy Organizing!

A special thank you to this week’s podcast sponsor, TidyLiving.com!

Use the promocode ORGANIZE365 to save 10%

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/182

Direct download: Org365-182.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Welcome to the Bermuda triangle of months! I never know where my July goes…

This is the month when I reflect on the past 11 months, delete and consolidate goals, and dream and plan for a productive fall.

This fall, I will be attending Biz Chix LIVE in Irvine, California on October 18-20. Let me know if you will be there!

In today’s podcast, I shared three items I am working on for this fall.

  1. The Productivity Planner.

This planner/book/workbook is meeting and exceeding all my expectations. It will be available for pre-order on August 4th for currently enrolled 100 Day Home Organization Program members. And will be included in the fall 100 Day Home Organization Program Registration.

Make sure to sign up on the 100 Day Home Organization Wait List to be notified when registration for fall opens!

  1. Sunday Basket™ Workshop Licensing.

I realized when I recorded podcast #166 All About The Sunday Basket™ Workshops, I was so excited about the workshops that I didn’t really share how it would benefit you to be a licensed Sunday Basket™ Provider.

I will be sharing more and answering all your questions on a live webinar/Q&A call on Zoom, July 12th at 9 pm EST. You can register here, and learn more about this licensing program here.

Then mark your calendar for September 28th for a day long Sunday Basket™ Workshop Licensee training at my house in West Chester, Ohio.

  1. Please take my survey!

I LOVE helping you get organized, and I want to provide the best resources and podcasts for you! You can sign up for the newsletter and take my survey here.

Enjoy the lazy days of summer this month and rest up for a productive fall!

A special thank you to this week’s podcast sponsor, SaneBox!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/181

 

Direct download: Org365-181.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

To learn more about organizing your home with the Sunday Basket and the 100 Day Home Organization Program, visit https://organize365.com/products-for-getting-organized/

Direct download: Org365-HelloBonus.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Our kid’s bring home SO much school and artwork, the thought of organizing it can be a daunting task.

In this week’s episode, I share with you some tips on how to make this as SIMPLE as possible.

The first step is trying to decide what to keep! There is a happy medium between those parents who throw everything away after a single week and those parents who file and catalog EVERY piece of paper their child has ever written on.

Some of the items I try to keep include artwork the kids made that has their hand prints on them, as well as anything that represents a first for them. For example, their first drawing or the first time they wrote their name.

Other paper items that I keep include any certificates or awards they receive and any original stories that they have written.

Of course, everybody feels differently about the school and artwork their children bring home, so the most important thing is to save what is special to YOU!

When you're organizing your child’s school and artwork, I recommend getting a storage container to keep it all in one place. If your kids are still in school, their work can be placed in the container as they bring it home until you are ready to get ORGANIZED!

Below are the three best ways I have found to organize your child’s work:

  • Create a Binder – A binder full of sheet protectors will help to preserve your child’s work, as well as allow you to save items that can’t be hole-punched for a binder. This can be a FUN and EASY way to flip through your child’s work together!
  • File Boxes – This can be a typical file box bought from any office supply store. Create a colorful file folder for each school year and organize them chronologically. Then just slip the artwork into the appropriate folder as you go!
  • Digital Storage – This is the newest form of organization. To save all your child’s work, simply take a picture of them and download it to your computer. By creating a slideshow of their work, it will be easy to share with your kids when they are older!

Taking the time to organize your child’s school and artwork using any of these methods can increase their confidence and self-esteem. They might also share with you some memories you didn’t know about!

The memories that go along with all of this school and artwork are just as important as the work itself!

So, to help you record some of those memories with your children, I created the Kid’s Art & School Organizer! These helpful sheets are a fun and easy way to help you record your children’s memories from preschool through to sixth grade.

The sheets are printable or editable (if you prefer to stay digital). Unlike other organizers, my questions change from year to year and include both school memories AND family memories. I think both are equally important.

You can find more information about the Kid’s Art & School Organizer here.

I would LOVE to see a picture of your child’s school and artwork all organized! Please share in my Facebook Group (and if you haven't joined it yet, just go ahead and request access!).

A special thank you to this week’s podcast sponsor, SaneBox!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/180

Direct download: Org365-180.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Google Calendar, Gmail, SaneBox, OH MY!

Today’s podcast is going to increase your productivity.  Once you implement what I share, you will get back HOURS and HOURS in every week of your life!

Sounds good, right?

I’ve wanted to share with you how I organize my Google Calendar and my Gmail for a couple of years. Specifically, I want to share with you how I manage to be SO efficient in everything I do with regards to calendar and email management…and how you can be, too!

But, I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to convey this to you. I thought about a podcast episode, a video series, or an online productivity course… then I came up with a plan which is kind of a mixture of all three.

In this week’s podcast episode, you’re going to get the audio tracks from a three-part video series that I created. Then, you can download the videos from the website link for FREE!

Google Calendar

I like to use Google Calendar and Gmail... they’re so universal and they have all the features that I want. They’re simple enough that you don’t need to use all the extra features to get the best out of them!

Using a Google Calendar effectively has increased my productivity in ways that I can’t even quantify.

Now that I have teenagers, Google Calendar has become a necessary part of our family. With integrated Google Calendars, the whole family is able to know what everyone is doing at the same time.

Gmail and SaneBox

I’ve done some really cool things with my Gmail that have increased my productivity! For example:

  1. Multiple Inboxes – I’ve basically created a Sunday Basket in my Gmail! I have my regular inbox and then ‘slash folders’ underneath.
  2. SaneBox – I used to get my inbox to zero a few times a month, but now with Sanebox, I can get it to zero every single night! It is AMAZING!

So go and listen to this week’s podcast episode which is the audio version of my 3-part video series.

Then, sign up for the 3 part-video series by clicking here. The three videos will be delivered to you by email over 3 days and they're called:

  1. How to Organize Your Google Calendar
  2. How to Organize Your Gmail
  3. How to Use SaneBox To Increase Your Productivity

I recommend that you listen first and then watch the videos.

I know that if you implement what I teach you, you will increase your productivity and get hours back in your week!

If you would like to try out SaneBox... and I really recommend that you do... go to Sanebox.com/organize365 and you'll get $25 off as well as a two week free trial!

A special thank you to this week’s podcast sponsor, SaneBox!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/179

Direct download: Org365-179.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

In her latest book, Lisa Woodruff explores the executive functions of the mind that directly affect your ability to organize your home: flexible thinking, working memory, self-monitoring, task initiation, planning, and organization. Along the way, she provides tips and strategies for overcoming obstacles—tools you can use to get the organized house you’ve been dreaming of.

Now available as an Audible Book.

How ADHD Affects Home Organization

Direct download: Org365-178.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

In this week’s episode, I share with you the next step in the evolution of The Sunday Basket™!

It’s what I like to call The Sunday Basket™ 2.0 and I discuss having more than one Sunday Basket™!

Most of you probably already know I’m COMPLETELY obsessed with The Sunday Basket™ and you’ve likely heard me talk about how it works.

For those of you who haven’t heard about the Sunday Basket™, you can refer back to my podcast episodes #101 - The Sunday Basket and more recently #173 – Everything You Want To Know About The Sunday Basket. Both episodes are great resources for starting your own basket and taking the first step to getting organized!

Once you have mastered using a single Sunday Basket™, it’s time to consider creating MORE THAN ONE BASKET!

Having multiple baskets helps to reduce your mind clutter. It prevents a lot of task switching because you are focusing on related tasks within each basket. This will allow you to get through each basket faster.

Going through multiple baskets is still going to take more time than going through just one, though. Remember, it is SUPER important that you are still going through ALL of your baskets every week. It remains a weekly task not to be forgotten.

Here are some of the types of baskets that I discuss in this week’s podcast.

  • The work basket for work-related items. This may not necessarily be paid work. It can include whatever you spend the majority of your time on when you aren’t taking care of your family or home (e.g. PTA, volunteering). This will help you to select the work-related tasks that you want to focus on during the week.
  • The project basket should just be for projects that get TOO BIG for the Sunday Basket™. You still go through the basket every week, but the project will probably be completed in about 2-4 weeks.
  • The caregiver/estate basket is a great place for any mail, bills, or other notices related to the person or estate that you are handling. It’s a simple way to keep the information organized and separate from your own.
  • The spouse basket is for your spouse to manage. It’s somewhere to place any items that belong to or may be of interest to your spouse. These MUST BE items that no longer require your attention, but may require theirs.
  • The kid basket can start as just a slash pocket within your own Sunday Basket™ and can develop with the needs and responsibilities of your kids. When you think they are ready and responsible enough for their own basket, help them get started!

As always, the number one rule for the Sunday Basket™ is that you have to go through it EVERY SUNDAY. So don’t create more baskets than you can handle!

If you’re interested in attending a Sunday Basket™ Workshop with a licensed provider near you, or attending one virtually, visit thesundaybasket.com.

If you’re interested in becoming a Sunday Basket™ Workshop Licensed Provider, click here!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/177

Direct download: Org365-177.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT