Organize 365® Podcast

In this week’s podcast episode, I discuss how best to declutter and organize your closet.

I discuss capsule wardrobes, how you can purge too much, and how you can have a variety in your everyday clothing while loving and wearing everything in your closet!

I started this year with three episodes about the importance of decluttering, organizing, and increasing productivity.

In those episodes, I explained that when you reduce the amount of "stuff" you own and get it all organized, your productivity will increase.  This will give you LOTS of extra time to focus on what you were meant to do in life.

Productivity is a result of living an organized life. 

This week's episode builds upon those topics. So if you missed those episodes and would like to listen to them first, they are #144 – Declutter!#145 – Organize, and #147 – Increase Productivity.

What to buy?

When I was in high school, my mother taught me some important lessons on how and what to buy when it came to clothes.

Here are the tips she shared with me that I still find helpful today:

  • "Cost Per Wearing" Analysis – Evaluate the cost of your clothing by how many times you think you will wear it. A $150 coat is worth the investment if you wear it 100 times, bringing the cost of the coat down to $1.50 per wear.  Compared to a $15 "bargain" top that you only actually wore once, meaning the cost per wear is $15. The $150 coat was a far more economical investment.
  • Buy In Outfits – Focus on purchasing items that are interchangeable. By focusing on a specific color scheme or style in mind, it will save you time and stress because everything will match.

What to keep?

Now that you have some ideas for how to shop for new clothes, what should you do with all of your existing clothes that are sitting in your closet?

It’s time for you to decide what needs to stay and what needs to go.

Just recently, I went through my own closet to decide what to keep and what to get rid of.

Here are the rules that helped me when decluttering my own clothes.

  • Keep clothes that fit you – We all have that one item of clothing we are keeping until we can lose 5 pounds and it will fit once again. It NEEDS to go!  You should only keep clothes that fit you and make you feel great. Don’t keep clothes that make you feel like you should change to be able to wear them.
  • Keep items that match each other – If it doesn’t match anything else in your wardrobe so you have nothing to wear it with, it needs to go. It doesn’t matter how cute or comfortable those shoes are if you are never going to wear them.
  • No extra purses – Most women do the same with purses… we usually stick to one primary purse yet hold onto our old purses, telling ourselves we might one day need them. This ALMOST NEVER happens! Try to keep your everyday purse, as well as a particular favorite, and get rid of the rest. You really DON’T need them all.

Types of wardrobes to consider...

If you’re looking to try something entirely new when it comes to organizing your wardrobe, there are a couple different options out there for minimizing your closet.

  • Capsule wardrobe – This type of wardrobe limits you to a certain number of items per capsule (not including your under garments). You set the number to what you would like and you limit your wardrobe capsule to that number.  Have capsules for work, seasons, or specific occasions, it’s up to you.  You can keep the rest of your clothes, but it takes the stress out of planning your day-to-day outfits.
  • Uniform wardrobe – Many successful executives such as Steve Jobs, Barrack Obama and Mark Zuckerberg have utilized the uniform wardrobe. Clothes in this kind of wardrobe are all similar and interchangeable.  For example, my wardrobe consists of mostly jeans, sweaters, and tops.  Jeans match pretty much everything so it is easy for me to buy a large variety of tops to interchange with them.

As parents, our wardrobes often fall to the wayside as we spend all of our time and money making sure that our kids (who are constantly growing) are getting the clothes that they need.

I’m here to tell you that it’s IMPORTANT to update your wardrobe, too.  Instead of buying the occasional, random item for yourself on a whim, make a point of finding yourself something nice that matches your wardrobe.

It’s essential for you to look and feel good about yourself, too.

Now that I have shared my ideas for decluttering your wardrobe, I challenge ALL of you to walk into your closet and come out with 15 items that you no longer need or want.

This is a great first step towards getting your closet decluttered.

By following my tips and getting your closet organized, you’ll be able to get dressed quicker, feel better, and get on with living your best life.

Now go declutter!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/186

Direct download: Org365-186.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

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

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

This week’s podcast is about the times when you find yourself in a tough phase of life. It’s about the times when you literally have no time to get organized no matter how much you want to.

It may be that you’re SO busy you struggle to find even 15 minutes a day to get your home organized.

Or you have the time, but what you want/need to do requires money and you literally don’t have a spare $15 right now.

It may be both, you don’t have a spare 15 minutes AND a spare $15!

They’re not phases that we want to find ourselves in, but nonetheless, it can happen to us all and probably will at least once in our life.

I can easily draw upon my own personal experience with this topic. I’d LOVE to say that I was stuck in this phase of life for a week or a month, but it was more like 6 years!

In the episode, I touch on how to get organized if you have a chronic condition (like fibromyalgia or a physical ailment). I’m afraid I have no magic answer ,but my main advice is to get someone to help you, either paid (if you can afford it) or unpaid (friends and family). When you have help in place, you then need to think about how you can incorporate help with home organization as well as physical care. People want to help you, and so, broaden your thinking on how you can use that help.

If you’re a parent, a lot can depend upon the age of your children and what I like to call the "stage of parenting" that you find yourself in. I recorded a whole podcast episode on this very topic: #130 - The Three Stages of Parenting.

  • Age 0-6 is when you’re doing EVERYTHING for your kids. You’re at home a lot. It can be exhausting. And there’s SO much to organize because the rate of change when it comes to clothes, toys, etc. is mind boggling!
  • Age 6-12 is when you do things with your kids. You teach them how to start looking after themselves.
  • 13+ is when they’re becoming a young adult. Then, it’s more about coaching and mentoring.

So what do you do when you’re in the middle of a phase and you don’t have time or money to get your house organized?

My answer is to work on changing your mindset.

A lot goes on in your head before you see it in physical reality. I notice this with my business, my finances, my relationships… the world is more mental than it is physical. Positivity feeds and attracts more positivity, and negativity feeds and attracts more negativity.

I reference in the podcast a documentary series on inventions that I watched and loved. If you’d like to check it out, it’s by National Geographic called American Genius.

If you’re in a hard place and you feel stuck in a tough phase of life, this doesn’t mean that you should give up the desire to have an organized home in the future. If you think about having an organized home and you want it enough, you will manifest it.

Having a Sunday Basket™ will really help you too. The Sunday Basket™ helps bring order, it develops the right skills, and brings about the discipline required for an organized house.

Of course, please continue to listen to my podcast and other podcasts on home organization, too! Continue working on your mindset, even if you’re somewhat limited in the action that you can take right now. You will be amazed at the power of a mindset shift!

View the complete post here: https://organize365.com/176

Direct download: Org365-176.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This week’s podcast episode is a special one for me as it's all about my new book, How ADHD Affects Home Organization, which launched June 1!

In this week’s podcast episode, I share a lot about why I decided to write the book, what my goals are, and how I truly believe that this book is REALLY going to help people with ADHD feel empowered and able to take control of their home organization!

If you’d told me years ago that I’d one day be the author of a book called How ADHD Affects Home Organization, I’d have found it hard to believe... I don't have a degree or PhD in the subject!

However, it’s a topic that I’ve specialized in for almost 20 years in order to help my children. I’ve worked hard on overcoming every challenge that my children have faced, no matter how many attempts it took. We’ve tried a 100% natural approach with no medication at all, and we’ve tried various medications and alternative therapies, too. I’ve read medical journals, researched like crazy, and over the years I’ve developed an obsession with understanding how the mind works and how we can improve it.

I’ve parented, taught, and professionally organized people who struggle with ADHD. I’ve helped people from all around the world get their homes organized and stay organized.

My podcast series on ADHD last spring was very popular.  SO many people got in touch to say how much it had helped them and how I was able to explain things in a way that no one else had ever managed to before.

Through all of the above, I came to accept that I am an expert and I can and should use my expertise to really help others.  It seemed about time to write a book and so I did... and that’s why I’m launching How ADHD Affects Home Organization.

This book is for people who find themselves overwhelmed, even paralyzed, with home organization. Where you put effort in and don’t make progress, and you spend money on organizing solutions that just don’t work! My book is for people who know what to do, but just can’t get started!

Organization is not easy. And if you have ADHD, it’s a lot harder, but it’s not impossible! It’s all about understanding how your brain works, then working with your brain and not against it. It’s about recognizing your strengths and weaknesses, using them to your advantage, and finding strategies that work for you.

How ADHD Affects Home Organization explores the executive functions of the mind and how they affect your ability to organize your home. In particular, I take 6 executive functions (flexible thinking, working memory, self-monitoring, task initiation, planning, and organization) and explain for each one what it is, why it’s important when organizing your house, and I share solutions to problems that you may face.

The kindle book is free from June 1st - 3rd. Then from June 4th, it’ll be 99 cents for the rest of the month. If you buy the Kindle version, you’ll also receive a discount when downloading the audio version from Audible.

Please get a copy of the book and please, please review it, too. It really helps more people receive the message that they too can get organized!

This book will help the loved ones of those who have ADHD, too. Once you understand how the brain of a loved one with ADHD works, you understand them as a person a little bit more than you did before.

I truly believe it’s going to be a game changer and really help a lot of people. I’m so EXCITED! I want to remove the cloud over people who have ADHD and offer them hope, solutions, and empowerment.

To get your copy, please click here!

Direct download: Org365-174.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Welcome to the final episode of my three-part series all about the different phases of life and how specific life experiences can cause them to overlap.

In this week's episode, I talk about what happens when we lose a loved one. Specifically, I focus on losing a parent.

It's rather poignant for me that when I recorded the episode, it was 8 years to the day that my father had passed away.

Losing a loved one moves you into three phases of life

Survival

When your parent passes away, immediately you're thrust into the survival phase. You have a lot to do.

You have to plan the funeral, speak to other family members, help organize the estate, and many other things at an incredibly stressful and emotional time of your life. You're in the survival phase.

Accumulation

You will accumulate a lot of belongings from your parents.

At such an emotional time, you don't want to let go of things in haste. So I recommend finding an off-site storage unit for a certain period of time just so you can take time to decide what to keep and what to let go of.

If you're anything like me, you may find yourself trading-up many items that are actually nicer than those you already have!

Downsizing & Legacy

After about a year, you enter the downsizing and legacy phase.

The legacy phase comes first and it lasts for about 3-4 years. You start to think about what you'll keep longer term that once belonged to your parents. What do you want to be a part of their legacy?

It's all about how you're going to take the essence of the person who passed away and put it to use in a meaningful way.

I really recommend finding interesting and creative ways to keep the items that carry sentimental value to you.

For example, I have a shadow box and every time I find little things that remind me of my Dad, I put them in the shadow box in the basement.

About year 5, you're going to find yourself focusing more on downsizing.

At this time, not only will you be thinking about what you want to keep that once belonged to your parents, but you start to think about yourself, too. You start to look at YOUR belongings and think about what will be YOUR legacy.

You realize that someone has to get rid of it all someday!

I could record podcasts for weeks about how different life events, in addition to our chronological age, impact what organizational phase of life we feel like we are most in at any one moment.

My goal in recording these podcasts was not for you to be able to better categorize your phase of life, but to recognize that we are all floating between the phases at any one time and can learn and grow at our own pace and stage of life.

A special thank you to this week's podcast sponsor, the National Association of Senior Move Managers!

Direct download: Org365-172.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Last week, I introduced you to the 4 phases of life and how when you have your babies can impact upon your phase of life.

This week, I explore this topic even further and share with you how caring for family members can also affect your organizational phase of life.

Having a baby, the topic of last week's podcast, is a welcome and joyous life event. When you have a baby, you're thrust into the accumulation phase. All of those toys...food...clothes...furniture...!

This week's focus is on when you become a caretaker for a family member.

Unfortunately, when you become a caretaker of a family member, that's not such a joyous life event.

Sometimes we'll see it coming and have a gradual lead in, other times it rocks our world in an instant!

Often this will be due to medical emergencies, like when a loved one falls and breaks their hip...which I've found in recent years is a real thing and it happens A LOT!

I can share from first-hand experience that being a caretaker is EXTREMELY time consuming.

You have an immediate prioritization shift in your life.

You're thrust into having responsibility over two sets of everything...two households, two sets of bills, etc.

Whatever stage of life you were previously in, when you become a caretaker, you're also now in the survival phase, too.

In this podcast episode, I share with you some really useful ideas on how to cope if this happens to you.

I also have two super useful products that are designed to help you keep track of, and ultimately share when needed, important personal information.

One focuses on medical information (i.e., insurance, current and past prescriptions, medical history, etc.).

The other focuses on financial information, mainly for spouses to keep a joint record (i.e., bank details, etc.).

They are editable so you can fill one in for yourself, another for your parents, and I even fill the medical record out for my children. It's just so useful to keep all the information that you have in one simple record.

Next week, I look at how losing a close family member can affect your phase of life. I'm sure you can guess what phase you find yourself in when that happens!

Full blog post can be viewed at organize365.com/170

A special thank you to this week's podcast sponsor, the National Association of Senior Move Managers

Direct download: Org365-170.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I'm super excited to share with you my next series of 3 podcasts which are all about the different phases of life and how they overlap.

Most people are living in overlapping phases of life. I really want to address this topic and explore what it means for you.

This is something of a storytelling podcast - there's not a lot of direct action for you to take, but lots of learning!

I've actually been wanting to record this podcast series for about 9 months, but it's a topic that is best approached when the timing is just right! January is all about organizational projects, March is about decluttering... May is the perfect time to reflect!

It's all centered around what I consider to be the 4 phases of a woman's life.

The Childhood Phase (birth to around 18 years old) - Limited organizational requirements and heavily influenced by parents.

The Accumulation Phase (around 18-39 years old) - A period of learning and accumulating. You accumulate more and more belongings! Usually in this phase, you accumulate a spouse and family, too!

The Survival Phase (around 40-54 years old) - A mindset shift takes place at this stage. Most people are working during this phase and, in addition to that, they're looking after their family and running the household. And if you're anything like me, you're in your car all the time!

The Downsizing & Legacy Phase (age 55+) - The big clear out! Kids are moving out and you naturally start to reduce the amount of items in your house. You also begin to consider your legacy - what will you save and why?

There are three big life events that affect these phases of life - having children, becoming a caretaker for someone, and when someone close to you passes away.

This week's focus is on having children.

When we have kids, we go into full blown accumulation mode. Even the most minimalist of people can't resist accumulation when it comes to babies!

As more and more millennials are tending towards having children in their early 40's, what does this mean in terms of the stages in life?

Having a baby in your 40's = an overlap of the accumulation and the survival stage.

Next week, I look at how becoming a caretaker for someone can affect your phase of life.

Have a great week!

Direct download: Org365-169.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This week on the podcast, I'm talking to you about all the different kinds of bags you have in your house. From backpacks to purses, I'm going through the different kinds of bags and how many we should have of each.

And I am super excited about the next three podcasts. I'm creating a series of podcasts about what to do when the phases of life overlap.

Thank you so much for being part of the Organize 365 community. My hope each day is that I can provide you with one new nugget of information that will help you make your home organization easier.

Have a great week!

Direct download: Org365-167.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The book The Power of When will help you understand your body’s natural chronotype and how to use that information to achieve your personal goals in organizing your home and living a more productive life.

I used the information in this book to understand how and why the members of our family choose to do daily routine tasks at different times of day and how to best support my kids as they become adults.

The Power of When

Direct download: Org365-165.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Clean out and back up the cars - because we are going to FILL them!

Designate one car for donations and one for items that need to be delivered, returned or consigned.  

Next decide how long you have to work on this project at ONE time. 

If you have 2 hours or more - EMPTY the garage. You know it's true. Once the items are OUT of the garage it is as easy to donate them as it is to put them back in the garage. 

The garage houses all of the future projects we "think" we are going to do.

The biggest work you are going to do is DECIDE if you really are going to do those ideas and projects. 

In the podcast I talk about how I no longer have flower gardens, why I easily donate items we have purchased and never used and how we need better tools. 

It's a funny listen. And will keep you going while you declutter guilt and expectations in the form of flower pots and old sporting equipment.

Check your storage solutions.

Now is the time to invest in a few plastic shelving units to organize what you have left and buy organizers specific to what YOU have in your garage.

Keep going! You can do this!

Keep decluttering all the way until March 31!!

I want you to focus on decluttering and your Sunday Basket this month so…

The 100 Day Home Organization Challenge registration is closed. Join the wait list here and you will be the first to be notified when it reopens.

Direct download: Org365-160.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

No one wants to go down here. I know.

If you haven't listened to the "How to Sort a Box" podcast. It is podcast #150 and goes along with today’s podcast #159

Ok. The basement.

In this space you need a leader who will direct the family. - Usually mom.

The leader goes down and starts sorting boxes and items into family members' piles. And then each family member (one at a time) will come down, make decisions and carry the donations up.

-HINT-

Preparation is KEY here! The more the leader prepares, the quicker the decisions go and the more gets donated. 

There is no denying that basements, attics and storage rooms ZAP energy and are the HARDEST areas to organize!

Everything is down there because you don't know what to do with it. ;)

So pace yourself. Each bag and box donated is a HUGE win!

Keep going. You can do this!

Don't forget to download the family and individual brackets to play along. View the get started post for "rules". :)

This is the LAST day to register for the Sunday Basket workshops.

Start tackling that storage room… one box at a time.

For the full show notes go to organize365.com/159
Direct download: Org365-159.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The first step in organizing the family room is to stop and think about what you really do in this space. 
 
Do you still watch DVDs or do you stream your entertainment?
 
If your youngest child is in 2nd grade it is OK to move all the toys out of the family room.
 
If your youngest child is in middle school all their toys can be in their room.
 
For the full show notes go to organize365.com/157
Direct download: Org365-157.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Here are the 7 steps to decluttering your bedroom at any age.
 
1. Pick up all trash
2. Collect all food, dishes and dirty laundry.
3. Scan the room and fill a bag of any easily donateable items.
4. Go through ALL your clothes. Try on all your pants and tops.
5. Look at the items on your floor (including furniture) and make decisions about what can go.
6. Go through the books in your bedroom.
7. Stand and look at each wall of your room.
 
For the full show notes go to organize365.com/156
Direct download: Org365-156.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Step 1 - Get ALL your photos in ONE place.

Step 2 - Decide what you want.

Step 3 - SORT by person and Project.

Here are my favorite albums to make. Click here for my photo services and see videos of the most popular albums I make.

Step 4 - Print your photos. :)

TimeShel is the Apple App I am using to print 30 photos each month from my phone.

Look at these beautiful pictures!

TimeShel is super easy to use. Remember to use the code: ORG365 to get a free month 10 prints or 40% off your 30 monthly print subscription.

Era is the Apple app I mentioned for having larger prints printed from your phone. Again, use the code ORG365 and get free shipping on your first order. :)

Click here for all the links and show notes.

Click here to join the 100 Day Home Organization Challenge.

Direct download: Org365-153.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The Procrastinate on Purpose By Rory Vaden is the book that explains how I am so ridiculously productive and it has NOTHING to do with time management.

I had so much fun sharing about the significance calculation, the rule of 30 and how all this relates to getting your home organized!

Rory's Focus Funnel:

  1. Can it be eliminated?
  2. Can it be automated?
  3. Can it be delegated?

No?

Then do it now or procrastinate it on purpose.

Links mentioned in the podcast:

100 Day Home Organization Challenge

My Weekly, Monthly and Yearly checklists.

Rory's book on Kindle

The audio book version of The Mindset of Organization is finally here!! I hope you enjoy the sample chapters in podcast 140. You can get a free audible copy of The Mindset of Organization and start a free 30 day trial of audible at Organize365.com/audible

Direct download: Org365-152.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I talk a LOT about saving your memories. And while I tell you to save your memories in blankets and photo albums, I have not given you a resource to do so. Until today.

I am SO excited to introduce you to Once Upon A Time Creation. Jen Anderson has created a beautiful line of keepsakes that can be created from your storage room treasures.

Check out my favorites in this week’s blog post.

What treasures will you create? Check out Once Upon a Time Creation here.

Click here to join the 100 Day Home Organization Challenge.

Direct download: Org365-151.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The ONE Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan is the book that has helped me the most in achieving increased productivity.

Using the focus question, “What is the ONE thing I can do, such that by doing it, everything else will become easier and unnecessary?” I prioritize my day on a continual basis.

In this podcast you will hear:

  • Why I prioritized a nay over recording this podcast.
  • How extraordinary success is sequential.
  • About the domino effect.
  • How to apply the ONE thing to organizing your home.

The audio book version of The Mindset of Organization is finally here!! I hope you enjoy the sample chapters in podcast 140. You can get a free audible copy of The Mindset of Organization and start a free 30 day trial of audible at Organize365.com/audible

Direct download: Org365-146.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The audio book version of The Mindset of Organization is finally here!! I hope you enjoy these sample chapters today. You can get a free audible copy of The Mindset of Organization and start a free 30 day trial at Organize365.com/audible

Direct download: Org365-140.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Listen to how being organized, and living an organized life allows you to be more productive, and be able to handle those unexpected emergencies and events that come into every person's life. Change is inevitable. Unexpected events are going to happen. They are a guaranteed but they're unexpected.

A few weeks ago, I had a series of events happen in a matter of just two to three days that cost me 80 hours out of the next two weeks of my life. Some of these were good changes. Some of these were bad changes. And all of them were unexpected.

I'm going to walk you through that 16 days, how these events unfolded over that time, what ended up getting sacrificed out of my schedule, and how I got back on track.

So what did I do?

#1 - I managed my expectations.

#2 – My systems are rock solid.

#3 - I used my phone for almost everything!

#4 - I remained calm so that the kids and Greg remained calm too.

So this getting organized thing, it's a big deal. It's a really big deal. It has a huge impact, not only on your space and how your space looks, but your ability to drop everything and take care of your kids or the people that you work with so that they can go and grieve or do what they need to do, and you can pick up the pieces and not be a hot mess or all stressed out about it. It's important for your marriage if you're married. The more organized you are, the more time you have for those people that you love and for yourself.

The quickest way to get to a productive life is to get your home organized. Join me in the 100 Day home organization challenge and let’s do this!

 

Direct download: Org365-139.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I’m sharing what I like, don't like and why I think that this book doesn't work for American women.

Talk about a controversial statement, I know, but I think "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" does not work for the majority of American women. Marie and I approach organizing differently based on our ages and countries of origin./p>

There a few things that I do like about Marie's book.

  1. I love that she has brought the discussion of clutter and organizing to the attention of the media and people around the world.
  2. I like the idea behind her method of sparking joy. “If it doesn't spark joy that you should get rid of it.”
  3. I also love that Marie champions that idea that organization is a teachable and learnable skill.

Yes, yes, YES! That is what I have been saying for years, that it doesn't matter if you're not organized now, you can learn to be organized.


{To really understand why this book doesn’t work for American women read the whole post or listen to the podcast where I dive deep into the differences between an American house and a Japanese house and our cultural differences.}

 
What works for Marie but I have not seen as easily implementable for Americans are the following five things.
 
#1 Marie says you should tidy all at once and be done.

Immediately that rubbed me the wrong way, which is why I had such a hard time with her book. Having helped so many women organize their whole homes and organized my own I know, it took me three years to get organized. Knowing how hard American women try to be organized and the quantity of items to be organized I knew it was not that easy. You can't just wave a magic wand, do it once and it's all done.

#2 Marie consistently brings up this idea of perfectionism, the perfect system and that you can reach perfection.

I do not think that you can reach perfection. I'm not there, I actually get bored when I get anywhere close to being super productive. I create all these alternative projects I can do to make my life a little bit more cluttered. I don't want to live in a perfect minimalistic, 100% efficient life. I don't agree that you can actually even achieve a perfect life.  

#3 Is the topic of paper organization.

This is the hot button that originally rubbed me the wrong way when reading Marie’s book. The first time I read her book, I stopped reading after the one and a half pages about how to organize paper, which basically said just get rid of all of it.

I about had a heart failure.

So when I re-read the book last week, and I read all the way through I realized that towards the end of the book she does tell you how to organize paper, a little bit. But she still sticks with the idea that almost all paper should be thrown away and that there are only three files that you should have.

Files.

Not filing systems.
 
Files.
 
Three envelopes or three files of paper, TOTAL.
 

#4 Marie glosses over photos and memories.

Her suggestion to go through your photos one by one and make decisions, would take at least a year for most of the Americans that I know. It is definitely not something you can tidy all at once and be done in a day or two. Furthermore, most Americans have a hard time deciding which photos are good to keep and which ones can be let go.

Don’t believe me? What do you do with your school pictures after you put one in a family frame and hand them out to friends and family members? If you are like most Americans you store the rest in the school envelope and “save” them. Who know, we might “need” them. And they cost good money. See – we need help.


And lastly, #5 Marie explains how she empties her purse every single day.

Her wallet, train ticket, etc all come out of her purse and are stored in different places in her home. Then she puts the purse in a bag and puts it up on the shelf of her closet. There is no way that I could empty out my purse and refill my purse every day.


I am so grateful that the "Magic Art of Tidying Up" has become such a popular book and has brought this whole idea of organizing and decluttering to the forefront of the media. It has opened up the discussion for people around the world to really take a look at the stuff that they have saved and think about the kind of a life that they want to live.

However, if you are an American and you have read this book and you've made great progress in your master closet, but then you haven't made much more progress in the rest of your house, you're doing just fine.
 
So what does work for American women? The 100 Day Home Organization Challenge is the perfect match for your American home. Registration just opened for the January 2 kick off. Join today!
Direct download: Org365-138-2020.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

When your family gathers together for the holidays this year, bring out your memory boxes!

Organizing old family memories, treasures, photos, and memorabilia is time-consuming and hard emotional work. Why not involve the whole family this year and conquer a few boxes at the same time.

  1. Pull out all the photos.

Grab a few boxes of photos and let you family enjoy them, unorganized and all. Enjoy sharing stories and reminiscing about old times.

Use a photo-safe pen for family members to label who is in the picture on the back.

Let your family pitch duplicates, blurry pictures, pictures of landscapes, and other unnecessary photos.

Ask a teenager to scan the best photos and share them with the family.

Let your family members take the photos home!

  1. Record the stories.

You can make a video or audio recording of your family’s memories, but I like good old fashioned oral tradition as well.

Share stories, let the grandchildren overhear, and laugh until you cry.

Hearing the stories of your family’s history is powerful.

  1. Pull out childhood memories from the attic and storage room with your adult children.

Bring up a few boxes of your adult child’s childhood memories to reminisce and go through in the family room. Share the memories and either declutter the items or send them home with your child. J

If you are the child, go grab a few of those boxes on your next visit home.

  1. Play old home movies on the TV.

Fire up the old VHS or movie reel player and enjoy watching past holidays, babies take their first steps and ride their bikes.

Memories are meant to be shared and enjoyed. Enjoy yours with your families this holiday!

You can view the full post here: https://organize365.com/137

Thank you to Swap.com for sponsoring this podcast series.

Direct download: Org365-137.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

For many of us, it is relatively easy to let go of inexpensive items of clutter that we no longer love and need. As you progress through your home decluttering/organization journey, you will naturally start to question why you are keeping items of greater value.

For many of us, the act of collecting is fun. As children, we collected Beanie Babies, Happy Meal toys, and rocks. As we age, the desire to have complete collections can consume us beyond our actual desire for the items being collected. 

And once collected, collectibles have both a real and a perceived value. 

So what do we do when we look around our homes and see expensive clutter that we lovingly collected and purchased?

  1. Does the collection still bring you joy? 
  2. Have you documented the memory?
  3. Look up the monetary value. 
  4. Share your collections with family. 

You can view the full post here: https://organize365.com/135

Thank you to Swap.com for sponsoring this podcast series. 

Direct download: Org365-135.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I always thought that I divided my calendar into three separate years because I was a schoolteacher or because I had children. But the more I talk to women without children who work 9-to-5 jobs, the more I find that this way of looking at the calendar actually rings true for most women.

In this week’s post, I will walk you through how I organize my calendar three times a year, and how each time block starts out structured and organized and ends up chaotic and unstructured.

My 3 calendar seasons are September to December, January to May, and June to August.

Read the full post here: https://organize365.com/my-three-new-years/

Direct download: Org365-134.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Match your holiday gift to the recipients "love language" and give clutter free gifts this holiday season.

Have you heard of the 5 love languages? Understanding how we give and receive love helps us make more meaningful purchases and give gifts that will be used and appreciated.

The five love languages are:

  1. Quality time
  2. Acts of service
  3. Touch
  4. Gifts
  5. Words of affirmation

In this week's blog post, I have ideas for clutter free gifts for each of the 5 love languages. Read it here: https://organize365.com/clutter-free-christmas-gifts/

Direct download: Org365-132.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

It is so easy for us to start organizing ourselves and start making progress.

Then we look at our spouses and notice that they have not made the same progress we have made. We want them to be doing what we are doing. However, they need to see a few more things from us before they're ready to jump on board.

Here are the steps:

  1. Husbands are looking for you to be consistent.
  2. Your husband is looking for results that last.
  3. Change is yucky.
  4. He has to want it for himself.
  5. Stop focusing on his passion projects.

Click here to read the whole post: https://organize365.com/organize-husbands/

Direct download: Org365-131.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Just as there are 4 phases of life that I identified in the Mindset Of Organization Book, these 3 phases of parenting all need different organization as well. The more you understand where you are in life, the more successful you will be at finding and implementing the organization you need to make your life function better.

Parenting Stage 1: 0-6 years old – You Do It All

The first stage of parenting is sheer survival! Under the age of 6 almost all daily duties with your children fall on your shoulders. The days are long and I’m not sure who said the years are short – they weren’t for me!

Organizing yourself and your family in this stage is like shoveling snow in a snow storm. Organization is unique to you and your family and likely will completely change every 3 months. My solution was to chunk my year into 3 month groupings. I would make a few goals for each of my kids, purge their clothes and toys and keep plugging away.

Parenting Stage 2: 7-12 years old – You Do It Together

The grade school years of parenting were the easiest for me. I loved the structure, the fact that my kids were still under my control and the great friends I made during those years. These are very social years where the kids and parents connect and enjoy activities together.

As your kids age through this stage their toys will go from being everywhere – to being only in their rooms. These are the years when your kids learn chores and establish their contributing roles to your family dynamics.

Parenting Stage 3: 13+ years old – Guidance & Support

This parenting stage is as time consuming as the first, except this time I am in my car all the time and not at home. Luckily for me I view that large quantity of driving time as the best quality time I get with my teens. Deep thoughts, but dreams and life lessons are often talked about in the hours and hours of time I spend with my teens in the car.

I find myself going from managing one family calendar to providing and supporting my teens as they take on their own calendar scheduling, activities and start making their big lifetime goals come to life.

Direct download: Org365-130.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Almost all sports involve special clothing, equipment and leaving the house. Even walking my dog!

Here are 8 steps to get your sporting equipment organized and have everything you need – when you need it!

  1. Get a bag for EACH sport and each person.
  2. Create a custom checklist for each bag.
  3. Buy MORE of anything you can!
  4. Keep the sports bags and uniforms in the car, garage or laundry room.
  5. Stocked “Mom Bag”.
  6. Stocked “Spectator Bag”.
  7. Buy Garage Organizers.
  8. Clean Out the Car!

For more ideas and further explanation view the whole post here: https://organize365.com/how-to-organize-sporting-equipment/

Direct download: Org365-129.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

You only have 24 hours a day. The only way to get more time is to eliminate tasks or get help doing them.

I know this is a hard concept for some to embrace. The idea of paying someone to do something you CAN do is a big mental mindset shift.

By PAYING for a task to be done by someone else you are saying.

  1. I can't do it ALL.
  2. This is important enough to me at this time to make sure it is done and done regularly.
  3. I am going to use that time that is freed up to do.....

What is it that you REALLY what to be spending your time doing? 

This blog post is a meaty one. https://organize365.com/care/ I share the 10 steps I go through when hiring help. 

How to hire help

  1. Make a job description. In your dream world what are ALL the things this person would do? When I hired babysitters for my daughter, I specifically looked for people who liked to cook and liked pets - 2 of my weaknesses and my daughter's strengths.
  2. Invite 10-20 people to look at your job description. Many people will not respond, so reach out to between 10 -20 potential good matches. When you get a yes... The LESS hours you need, the more candidates you will go through.
  3. Schedule an in person interview at your house on the day you want regular service. If you want a babysitter every Friday night, interview people on Friday night. If they can’t make the interview at that time... they won't be able to accept the job.
  4. Be flexible. The best employee/ employer relationship is a win -win. You win by getting the task done. Know what you want done - no matter what - and what would be a great addition, but not a deal breaker if it can't be done.
  5. Hire for a long time relationship not a one off task. Working in your home with your family is an intimate relationship. Trust your "gut feel" when interviewing and go for the candidate you feel most comfortable with.
  6. Remember this is a job. Don't get too chummy too fast. Maintain your role as employer and have safe boundaries.
  7. Negotiate. Be fair with what you are willing to pay. If you are wanting just a few hours or a specific day and time, be willing to pay a little for then to work around your schedule.
  8. Start with a trial. When you have picked your winner - start with a 30 day trial. Having a trial period of time allows you both to get to know each other and the expectations of the job. At the end of 30 days you will be able to clarify any tasks that need to be changed, modify hours, and solidify the agreement going forward.
  9. Be a good employer. I LOVE being an employer. Appreciate your hired help. Treat them like a valued member of your team. Remember important events in their lives. Pay them fairly and ethically. Pay the taxes you know you should.
  10. Enjoy your new found time! 

I use and recommended Care.com for household employment needs. By using this link I will earn an affiliate commission at no additional expense to you. Thanks!

Save 20% on a Care.com membership here.

Direct download: Org365-128.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Boys have fewer categories of “toys” but more pieces and parts than girls. The key to having an organized boy’s room is to buy organizers specifically designed for each of their precious collections. Understanding how boys go from toys to collections will also shed some light on the husbands and fathers in your life.

The blog post is full of Amazon links of the exact products I use when organizing boys Legos, video games, and card collections.https://organize365.com/organizing-boys/

Next Wednesday I will tackle how to organize sporting equipment for all ages.

Direct download: Org365-127.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Our natural inclination is to want to organize someone else or dive deep into organizing our "passions."

The easiest way to actually GET ORGANIZED is to go through your home in a logical progression starting with one room and slowly working your way through the whole house.

But we get stopped by wanting to organize family members or jumping into the deep end with Passion Projects.

Everyone has 1-3 current Passion Projects. Passion Projects are hobbies, memory items or pursuits that we identify with and make us come alive. We over buy and over collect in these areas because our desire to know and do more is unquenchable.

Passion Projects are not necessarily a monetary investment. But they are always a huge emotional and time investment.

Because we are so passionate and invested in our hobbies, we naturally want to get those organized first. Which is always a bad idea.

Passion Projects are hard to explain to others. We do not have a rational reason why we are saving what we are saving, but we knew we "need" to.

I am totally cool with that, but overtime I want you to get down to 1-3 Passion Projects. You can't be passionate about everything...

In 2017 I am going to dive deep into organizing Passion Projects. For now, focus on decluttering and organizing any nonPassion Project space in your home.

Come join the discussion over on Facebook and tell me what your (and your family member's) Passion Projects are. 

Direct download: Org365-126.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Today’s podcast came from a reader's submission, “Now that I no longer have kids' schedules dictating my time, I have no clue how to start planning MY time.”

I find this is SO true. When I have very little time, I manage my time and tasks well. When I feel like I have “all the time in the world,” I waste almost all of it.

In this podcast, I am diving deep into how we look at the time we have and how to make our own goals and deadlines to live the life we want.

I’d love to walk you through how to set and start your home organization plan in motion. Please join me in an upcoming webinar.

https://organize365.com/mindset-webinar/

You can view all the productivity podcasts here: https://organize365.com/productivity/

Direct download: Org365-124.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Basements and storage areas are the easiest places to hide treasures we aren’t sure if we still want and items we don’t know how to properly get rid of.

Today, I am revisiting this space with more ideas to help you tackle your storage monster.

And with the winter holidays just around the corner, I have a challenge for you and some tips on scaling back and organizing your holiday decorations.

You can find more storage organizing posts and podcasts here: https://organize365.com/home-storage-and-organization-ideas/

 

Direct download: Org365-123.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This summer, I took the 10 Weeks To An Organized Move blog series and organized it into a free eBook resource.

 
If you, or someone you know is moving, you can download the eBook here: https://organize365.com/moving
Direct download: Org365-121.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Once you have your tasks divided out by type, then it’s time to find new pockets of time to accomplish your to-do list!

Here are 10 ways I have been able to find more time in the last 10 years:

  1. Watch less TV.
  2. Limit my time on social media.
  3. Turn off my phone notifications.
  4. Shorten the amount of time I spend straightening up in the morning.
  5. Smoosh household tasks together.
  6. Skip household tasks all together on one day each week.
  7. Get up early or stay up late.
  8. Hire help and use that time on your focused work.
  9. Trade a day with a friend or use dates to knock out to-do's.
  10. Work faster and accept that done is better than perfect.

Listen to this week’s podcast to hear how I did – or didn’t - use each of these strategies in different phases of my life.

For all links to all the posts in the productivity series go here: 

 

 

Direct download: Org365-120.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Once you have streamlined and moved most of your household tasks to large chunks of time in your calendar, you can now start to use 5 minute snippets of time to knock off some of the repetitive routine tasks on your list. This opens up more valuable chunks of time to get done bigger - and more valuable - projects. 

 
I know it sounds kind of counterintuitive, but if you are always doing little tasks here and there, you never feel done. If you have a 4-hour time block set aside to do those tasks and can knock 30 minutes off during the week through six 5-minute chunks, you feel accomplished and organized!
 
Here are twenty tasks I do in 5-minute pockets of time to get you started thinking about what your twenty tasks will be:
  • Start a load of laundry
  • Empty the dishwasher
  • Fold a load of laundry
  • Clean off the kitchen counter
  • Do the dishes
  • Clean out a shelf in the pantry
  • Empty all the trash cans
  • Pick up toys in the family room
  • Collect all the towels and start the laundry
  • Vacuum a room
  • Delete email and voicemail from your phone
  • Change your furnace filter
  • Take items up or downstairs
  • Go through your mail and open it all
  • Write a thank you note
  • Book a doctor appointment
  • Refill soap dispensers
  • Clean out 1 drawer
  • Shred paper
  • Put 10 things away
Use those minutes you spend talking on the phone or waiting for people knocking off your repetitive tasks!

 

Direct download: Org365-119.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

All work is NOT created equal. Before you listen to the podcast this week, make a giant list of all the tasks you want and need to get done. Then listen in to discover how to re-organize your to-do list to get the most done.

There are 4 kinds of tasks that end up on my to-do list.  Here is a brief synopsis of each one:

1. Ideas - Oh boy, do I have a BUNCH of ideas! Instead of putting my ideas on my to-do list, I jot the idea on a scrap of paper and toss it into my Sunday Basket. Then every 2-3 weeks, I read through my ideas and 80% end up getting tossed in the garbage.

2. Repetitive tasks I can be easily distracted from while doing them - Laundry, dishes, bill paying, cooking, grocery shopping, yard work, etc. These never-ending repetitive tasks can easily be done while listening to a podcast or beside my husband or kids while chatting with them. I save these tasks for Sundays and evenings when the family is home.

3. Focused work - These are the big things on your to-do list that would make a difference in your home, family, or career, but they require silence and focused work to get them done. Often, these are the items that move from list to list because we don't have the time to do them. NEWS FLASH, the time is never going to magically appear. Sorry.

To change your life and get big things done takes prioritization and time. Start by finding 30 minutes a day to put toward your focused work. Just ONE goal. Then work your way up to 2-4 hours a day. This is NOT easy, but SO worth it! It will feel weird pulling that time from other areas, but once you accomplish one goal you will be hooked!

4. Thinking time - This is not a to-do on your list, but I find if I do not have any time for my mind to wander - while I am driving, walking the dog, or doing the dishes - I get cranky. I need time to think and dream about possibilities and solutions. I am an entrepreneurial creative type and we need lots of time to think. You might need some planned thinking time, too!

For all the links to all the posts in the productivity series go here: www.organize365.com/productivity 

Direct download: Org365-118.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Checklists save time and sanity! In this podcast I am going over the checklists I use for monthly tasks and remembering one time yearly to do's.

 
All the posts in this series will be linked at www.organize365.com/productivity 
See my specific checklists here: http://organize365.com/checklists/
Direct download: Org365-116.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The Mindset of Organization: Take Back Your House One Phase at a Time has launched on Amazon.

 
Click here to buy your copy: www.organize365.com/mindset
 
Do you have ideas for my book launch tours or media connections to share? Email me at lisa@organize365.com
Direct download: Org365-115.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Step 2 in becoming more productive is to take your Sunday Basket to the next level. This is part two of Sunday Basket 2.0

 
 
It's time to add some planning time to the Sunday Basket. Once you have all your actionable to do's chosen for the coming week, group the tasks that make sense to do together. Like all the errands. 
 
Then using the Sunday Basket planning printables decide which days you will do each of your tasks. 
 
Stack your tasks to get the most done in a short amount of time. Download the Sunday Basket Planning Printable at www.organize365.com/productivity
 
Join me on Facebook www.organize365.com/>Facebook
All the posts in this series will be linked at www.organize365.com/productivity
Direct download: Org365-114.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Why do you want to be more productive? It is easier to find time when you know what you will do with it.

 
Step 2 in becoming more productive is to take your Sunday Basket to the next level. This is part one of Sunday Basket 2.0
 
Start to write down EVERY thing you want to do or remember and put those in the Sunday Basket.
 
And start to track your time. What tasks or activities could you eliminate in order to make more time in your schedule to reach your productivity goal?
 
Join me on Facebook www.organize365.com/Facebook
All the posts in this series will be linked at www.organize365.com/productivity
Direct download: Org365-112.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

5 things I do to make vacation packing easier.

 
1. Keep a prepacked bathroom bag for each family member.
2. Keep a written packing list from year to year.
3. Keep all prepurchased vacation items in one location.
4. Pack condo staples to save time and money.
5. Get your pet supplies and instructions ready.
 
All that's left to pack are your clothes and electronics!
Happy Vacationing!
 
View all the videos that go with this podcast at www.organize365.com/vacation 
Direct download: Org365-111.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Every other week I will be recording podcasts on productivity to share with you what I do to get so much done. 

 
Becoming a more productive person is a process that happens overtime. The spacing of these podcasts will give you time to absorb and implement changes into your routine so you will become more productive too!
 
All the posts in this series will be linked at www.organize365,com/productivity
 
In this podcast I mentioned the books:
Tell Your Time by Amy Lynn Andrews
Direct download: Org365-110.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 It never fails. You are ready to get organized, but the people and circumstances around you have you stuck. 
 
In this podcast I will break down the various situations that get us stuck in each phase of our organizational journey.
 
Direct download: Org365-109.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Organize 365 107 - Kid Bedroom Organization - Step 5 - The transition from childhood bedroom to living on your own

Direct download: Org365-107.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 

 
 This week is all about your toys, hobbies & passions.
 
Oh boy! This is a BIG week. 
 
OK lets talk about ALL your toys, hobbies and passions. First I want you to list your top 3. If you were going away for a month and could only take 3 things to play with or do, what would they be?
 
After you find spaces for those 3, maybe 4 categories of things we have to tackle the rest... do you want then at all? Do you want them only a few times a year? Are they memories you want to save?
 
To view all the posts in this series go to http://organize365.com/kids
Direct download: Org365-106.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 

 Your school work is similar to your parents work - work. You need to have a space just for your backpack and purse. And you should only have ONE back pack and purse to use each week. Wait until the weekend to change to a new bag. :)
 
It's time for you to get your own school and office supplies. I will share with you the basics you need including your own stapler, tape dispenser and scissors.
 
 
To view all the posts in this series go to http://organize365.com/kids
Direct download: Org365-105.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 

 There are 5 types of clothing covered in this podcast:
1. Clothing that is too BIG (hand -me-downs)
2. Clothing that is too SMALL.
3. Clothes you don't like and would never wear
4. Dressy clothes & uniforms
5. FAVORITES! :)
 
By categorizing your clothing in these types, you can more easily make decisions on what to keep and where to store your clothes. 
 
To view all the posts in this series go to http://organize365.com/kids
Direct download: Org365-104.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 

 First lets talk about bedroom organizing basics.
 
1. You need to pick a day and time WEEKLY to clean and organize your room.
 
2. Do the TOP 3 - Clean up trash & food, take out all the dirty laundry and clean up your floor. 
 
3. Look around and see if there is anything you can donate or get rid of.
 
4. Clean! - Vacuum and dust.
 
To view all the posts in this series go to http://organize365.com/kids
Direct download: Org365-103.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Where do I START organizing? That's the number one question I get asked as a professional organizer.

And while that is a loaded question with multiple "right" answers, I have decided to start all of my clients with a simple system I call The Sunday Basket.

It's not magic, and you don't have to use a basket... any bag or box will do.

You see, organization is a way of living and "being organized" is a way of thinking.

The Sunday Basket is a system for processing mail, kitchen counter "to do" papers, and ongoing household projects.

The weekly routine of collecting, processing and maintaining household to dos and papers is the perfect training ground for all your future home organization skills.

And, like it or not, the mail just keeps on coming... giving us plenty of practice to hone and refine our organizing skills.

I have complied all the best videos, podcasts, and posts from all over my website into one organized page to help you get your Sunday Basket started in 4 easy steps.

Sign up for the FREE 4 step Organization 101: The Sunday Basket here.

Direct download: Org365-101.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

In the last 4 podcasts I shared how the executive functioning part of the brain affects home organization. Today I want to share 5 general tips for achieving home organization success if you have ADHD.

  1. Simplify EVERY area of your home EXCEPT for your passions.
  2. Box up past projects and put them in storage. {Keep them, but not in your work space.}
  3. Clean up your craft/ project area every 1-3 weeks. 
  4. Maintain and straighten you home every 2-3 days.
  5. Reflect on what IS and is NOT working often.

View the post and podcast here: http://organize365.com/organizing-with-adhd/

Link to Alpha Brain: http://GetOnnit.com/365

Direct download: Org365-098-2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I have been hedging my affinity for Goodwill due to the backlash in public sentiment. My goal is to help you declutter your house, not debate current news events.

However, when I received an email from the Butler County Board of Developmental Disabilities agency asking to help spread the word about the goodwill that Goodwill was doing in our community, I was excited to jump in.

In today's podcast, I go more in depth about my affinity for Goodwill over the last 20 years and how I have experienced excellent service and amazing opportunities in my community for the disabled because of the opportunities Goodwill provides.

By using the voucher in today’s post, the value of your Goodwill donation will NOT be sold. It will be given as a CREDIT to the less fortunate in our community to use as money in the Goodwill shops.

It has been my experience that Goodwill lives up to their mission"Goodwill Easter Seals of Miami Valley and Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries provide vocational training to people with developmental disabilities. Goodwill’s core mission is to empower people with disabilities and other needs to achieve independence and to enhance their lives.  The local Goodwill organizations are a part of the world’s largest and most successful network providing employment and training services for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment."

No matter where you donate, giving the items in your home which have become clutter to others in need is always a blessing!

View the post and voucher link here:

http://organize365.com/spring-cleaning-donations-goodwill-vouchers-people-butler-county/

Direct download: Org365-093.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This week, you will turn your clocks forward and lose an hour. Oh, how I hate to lose time! However, the changing of the clocks reminds me to do a few other semi-annual maintenance tasks!

Here are 12 things to do When you change the clocks this weekend.

Direct download: Org365-091.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I LOVE to sort paper! But I know even the strongest man will break out in a cold sweat at the thought of sorting a mountain of paperwork.

This week in the podcast, I am walking you through how I think about paper and where it all goes.

I don’t even think it is the sorting as much as the KEEP pile that will drive you bananas.

I keep paper in 3 places:

  1. The Sunday Basket
  2. Binders
  3. Files/Or scanned

You can see pictures of the process and download a printable over on the blog post, but if you want to understand how I decide if a paper is a basket, binder, or file paper, you’ll want to listen to the podcast.

Direct download: Org365-090.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

The days I can get both kids to school ALL day and actually be ABLE to work are a mini miracle.

After spending years and years wishing .... there were no snow days.... children didn't get sick.... my home didn't need maintenance... unexpected tasks wouldn't pop up... I gave in and realized that the only thing I can control is ME.

So I set out to streamline, systematize, and proactively take care of anything I needed to do for the week... in advance.

Did you know that for every hour you spend planning, 3-4 hours are saved from redundancy, waiting for information, and not being prepared. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take that trade any day!

In the podcast, I share a few more productivity stats and tricks.

I have set aside my Sundays as the day that I get done everything I possibly can.

Obviously that entails doing the Sunday Basket, but here are 10 more tasks I do each Sunday that save me HOURS and HOURS each week.

Direct download: Org365-089.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Today is all about YOU. Why do we save what we save, and how can we make the decision to get rid of it? 

 
In this podcast I am sharing the 10 items I have help on to for 35-15 years. How I acquired the item, what it means to me and why it is time to let it go.
Direct download: Org365-088.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This week’s podcast and post is week 2 of a 3 week series dealing with different types of MEMORIES.

This week is all about what you save when a loved one passes... a spouse, a parent, or a child.

Tough stuff. No one is ready. And the decisions sometimes need to be made quickly. The podcast is full of lots of details that get lost in a blog post.

Losing a parent is never easy. Any items that are left in your parents’ house not only have meaning because your parents used them, but they are from your childhood as well. So I’m not going to lie, I filled a 27 foot U-Haul full of stuff and brought it back to my house after my father passed away. 

Direct download: Org365-087-2020.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

For years I just "organized" my piles in cuter containers, better systems and a larger house. But organization is not about containers or beautiful systems. It is about keeping what you want and love so you can enjoy those items now and in the future.

So today I want to talk about the items you are saving for your kids. Specifically - kids artwork, clothing, school papers, old toys, pictures, cards, books, old sporting equipment, etc.

1. What do THEY want?

The first question you need to ask is what does your child want to keep? So often I and other mothers save everything "for our kids". But what I realized is I was having trouble letting go.

Letting go of memories, stages of life and opportunities to do more in their short years at home.

At first we save ALL their clothes in case we have another child. But when no more children come, we just say we are saving the clothes for grandchildren. REALLY?!

I DID like it when I had some of my baby clothes to reminisce with my mom about when I had my children. But none of them fit. The stains you can't see now - we glaring when I looked at those clothes 30 years later.

My kids are pretty good at getting rid of things when they are done with them. WE put them in the basement! :)

So really ask your kids - starting at the age of 4 - what THEY want to keep.

2. What do YOU want?

Honestly your kids do NOT want every. single. spelling test they ever did. But I know a mom who keeps them all. Her child's handwriting is so precious to her.

That is TOTALLY FINE. Just know you are saving the for YOU not them.

Think about it this way. What if your mom showed up today with 18 boxes of every single school paper you ever did?

Nostalgic? Would you like to see them? Sure of course! For a few hours.

Would you want those 18 boxes in your basement?

How about your baby clothes? 5 large tubs full?

Every single toy you played with?

3. WHEN do you each want it?

I'm not totally clueless. I know your storage room is accumulating boxes of things your kids DO want to keep. And those kids want to keep things at YOUR house long after they leave.

It's all about making decisions. While making a scrapbook of pictures, a binder of school papers and a baby blanket {more below} all take TIME - and lots of it. They are a way to:

  1. Process through the piles.
  2. Pick the best.
  3. Experience the memories together.
  4. Enjoy a NEW creation.
  5. Empty out your storage room without emptying out your heart.

I have explained in great detail how to make photo albums and save your kid's school papers in binders. Today let's tackle baby clothes.

Head on over to the blog post to see how I turned our kid's baby clothes into blankets.

Direct download: Org365-086.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

1. Collecting tax documents.

Collecting, organizing and preparing tax documentation is overwhelming. I think it is because the information you need comes to you in a trickle through the mail, your email inbox and your own receipts - little by little - every day for weeks like Chinese water torture.

So I have come up with a few ways to alleviate my anxiety and take the torture out of tax preparation.

  1. Have a file, box or basket to put ALL incoming tax information.
  2. Make a master list AFTER you file your taxes this year of the documents you needed to find. Above is a picture of my list.
  3. Set aside  a 3-4 hour chunk of time to organize and prepare your taxes in one sitting. I actually look forward to this day. :)

2. Purging all my files & creating a color coded filing system.

After I file our taxes in early February I purge our filing cabinet. The first time I really did this it took days and I was able to get rid of 80% of what I had.
 
Download my FREE Printable - To Shred or Not to Shred
 

So I thought and thought and came up with this simpler, yet still cool, system. I already had colored hanging files {which I LOVE!!} and I assigned each category in my filing cabinet a color.

Then I purged each file as I put the contents in the new colored file.

 

3. Systematizing my home based business income & expenses for 2016.

Tax time has been a breeze the past few years because I have kept up with my business taxes each month.

Having been in business for myself for over 20 years, I know how hard it is to keep everything organized. This year I disciplined myself to do my finances in my business all by myself DAILY!

Each month I would reconcile and do my tax prep on the 1st of the month. I actually started to look forward to it because I have created a checklist and form to fill out each month so I didn't miss any expenses.

Each month I knew how much I actually made. I was able to continually refine my process and reduce my expenses.

This year I had my graphic designer make my pages in to adorable printables and they are available in my ETSY shop both as a digital download or printed with divider tabs in a DUO Binder.

Click here to read the full post, download the printable and enter the giveaway!
Direct download: Org365-085.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

My goal as a professional organizer is to help people get rid of the stuff they don't want so they can breathe and enjoy the stuff they choose to keep.

Honestly, the quickest and easiest way to do this has been to donate everything that can be donated at Goodwill and trash the rest. 

However, as I have matured as an organizer and grown my Cincinnati team, I have started to see how the items you may no longer want or need will fit a need somewhere else in the community. As our team had moved in to organizing and cleaning out family homes for sale it has become more apparent that we should and could be sharing these treasures for good.

So, this fall our team set to work and researched who really wanted and needed the stuff our clients no longer used. I am so sad I had not taken the time to do this earlier. :( The items you and I no longer like or need -really do fit a need someone else in the community has.

This list is specific for Cincinnati, but it will get you thinking outside of the box no matter where you live. This list will continue to be updated and refined. Feel free to leave a comment or contact me with more current information and additional donation locations I have not found.

Click here to read the full post.

Direct download: Org365-084.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Congratulations!! You made the decision to GET organized. There is just one problem... where do you start? In today's podcast you will learn all about HOW to start, WHERE to start and be encouraged to just START!

 
Direct download: Org365-081.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Over winter break I double dog dare you to accomplish the following three things all at the same time with your children.

1. Spend one-on-one time with each child.

2. Go through their room with them and find out what they still love and what they're ready to part with.

3. Help them see the value of organization by donating their unwanted items to charity, or selling them on Craigslist and eBay and earning some money.

Check out the complete post and links here: http://organize365.com/winter-break-triple-threat/

Direct download: Org365-080.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

In my professional organization experience I have noticed 3 distinct phases of life a woman goes through in relation to her home and clutter. 

1. Ages 25-40 the Accumulation Phase
2. Ages 40-55 the Survival Phase
3. Ages 55+ the Legacy & Downsizing Phase
 
Once you have determined your phase of life, then you must select what Organizational Stage you are in.
1. Overwhelmed
2. Creating Systems & Organization
3. Refinement & Styling
Direct download: Org365-078.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Today I'm answering a reader question, how can you organize two households and one? 

This response has been long overdue and I'm happy to go through how you organize combining two households into one.
 
On the podcast I talk about the different things to consider when you are melding two households with children and those without children.
Direct download: Org365-075.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I am answering a reader question today about how I organize projects. 

In this podcast I talk about organizing projects in your Sunday basket. 
 
Organizing projects for your work. 
 
And how I organize my goals.
Direct download: Org365-074.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

On the podcast today I'm sharing another heavy topic. There is a reason why the homes of parents of children with special needs are disorganized. 

 
In this podcast I go through the five stages I have observed parents with special needs children go through.
 
You can read the complete post here: http://organize365.com/organizing-special-needs-children/

 

Direct download: Org365-073.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

I have been feeling the tug to share my personal experience with depression for quite a while.

It may surprise you to hear that I have struggled with depression. I'm a pretty upbeat gal! Well, it surprised me too.

In today's podcast, I share my personal story with depression and how it affects every area of your life.

Here are 5 tips I gave myself and share with clients about how depression affects organization.

1. Give yourself grace.

I cannot even put into words how depression zapped me of every shred of energy to do ANYTHING. And the thought of tackling an organization project was SO overwhelming. My "will power" got up and went - AWAY!

2. Get a friend to help you.

Another friend's perspective, energy and motivation are contagious and can help you push through when you just want to watch TV. Used strategically, friends can help you get organized and stay functioning when your own initiative is low.

Over 50% of the Organize 365 clients call us in to help because they just can't do the organizing themselves in their depressed state.

3. Pick ONE area and COMPLETE it before moving on no matter how long it takes.

Slow and steady wins the race! Your home did not become a "mess" overnight, and it won't get organized overnight either. One step at a time.

Pick an area where you can get a quick win and start there:

  • Your night stand
  • Your dresser
  • The car
  • The Master Closet

The key is to MAINTAIN that area when you tackle area #2. The Productive Home Solution™ is ordered in a way so the areas you organize will stay organized as you move on to the next area of your home.

4. Acknowledge your limitations.

I know how frustrated you are! Knowing what I USED to be able to do made me even MORE depressed when I couldn't seem to tackle even the basics when I was depressed.

If it's a bad day... it's OK! You have time to get organized and take care of yourself.

And when your desire is beyond your physical ability - hire help.

5. Surround yourself with positive people.

I know it's easier to say than do, but I always felt better when I made myself go OUT and BE with people, even though I didn't want to.

I can't even tell you how many times we will be laughing with clients and then they say,

  • "I can't believe how fun you make organizing!"
  • "I haven't been able to laugh like that in a long time."
  • "If I knew how quickly you could get this organized I wouldn't have waited so long to call."
  • and our favorite. "I can't believe there are people who actually LIKE to organize!"

These thoughts come from my personal experience. What about you? Do you have any tips to share?

Direct download: Org365-069.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Do you have more to do than time to do it? Here are 10 ways to outsource your household tasks. I am a wife, mother, and business owner. Over the last 20 years I have juggled those three commitments in various ways. And what I've come to understand is that no one person can do everything. I have tried all of the ideas where you have your kids and your husband help you with the household tasks in order to free up some of your time. And I do many of those, but what do you do when there's not enough of you and your children and your husband to get everything done?

In order to grow my business over the last 20 years I have always hired help. Sometimes that is in the form of help to actually help my business as in a personal assistant, or an editor. But more and more I find it that the tasks I need to outsource are household related.

And really at the end of the day, the majority of the clients that the Organize 365 team organizes are really busy career oriented women who have let the household tasks go in order to focus on what is more important, their spouse, their children, in their career.

Click here to read all 10 items I have or am about to outsource.

Direct download: Org365-065.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Planning my week on Sunday saves me hours of time each week. These FREE printables will help you save time too! Click here to download your printables: https://organize365.com/sunday-basket-planning-printables/

Direct download: Org365-060.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

My list of "to do's" to get my kids ready for school grows longer every year. You can download my Back to School and Home Office Supply lists at www.organize365.com/school-checklists

Direct download: Org365-058.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

This podcast was originally aired in 2014. 

The content of the podcast and show notes have become a part of the Kids School Memory Binder. If you would like to learn more and/or purchase a binder, click here

You can read the original blog post here.

Direct download: Org365-040.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

My cellphones won't charge, and won't turn on, yet I still have them. WHY?

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-008.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

How to decide what batteries to keep and where to keep them. Hear Lisa's funny, or not so funny story about the smoke detectors and the fire chief.

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-007.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Come listen to the game I play with children to help them donate their furry friends.

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-006.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Lets talk about books. There are 5 different kids of books: memory books, reference books, pleasure books, books you are finished with and electronic books. How many do you need?

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-005.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Where do you store your Magazines? How many magazine collections do you have? Storage solutions and ideas for carving out reading time are on today's podcast.

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-004.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Where do you store your catalogs? How many do you use? Are you still shopping from Catalogs, or are you an online shopper?

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-003.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Before we dig too deep in the IDLE process let's talk about stages of organization and stages of life. Determine if you are in an acquiring or downsizing stage of life.

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-002.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Clutter is delayed decision making. Every Friday in 2015 we will work on changing your mindset about ONE item that maybe cluttering up your home.

Direct download: Org365-IDLE-001.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 
From paperwork to tax deductions and pills to therapy. Professional organizer, Lisa Woodruff, shows you how to organize your kid's medical needs.
Direct download: Org365-Stages-003.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

 
Making the transition to motherhood is a process. Babies and Toddlers require a LOT of organization! Professional Organizer Lisa Woodruff talks about the organizational step she took to bring order into the chaotic baby years.
 
Direct download: Org365-Stages-002.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

Lisa shares how she came up with the idea for a new podcast series called Organizing Life's Stages and Unexpected Events.
Direct download: Org365-Stages-001.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT