What are your organizational goals for 2011? I have so many I need to make a list!!
- Finally unpack and organize my office
- Unpack and set up the studio
- Make a daily checklist to get things accomplished
That is only the beginning. I plan to get the linen closet and kitchen organized BEFORE the new year. That’s only a few weeks away. EEK!
SMEAD Organomics has a nice checklist of ideas to get things ready for the new year:
Start 2011 Organized in your OfficeNo matter how crazy or chaotic your work life feels during the last quarter, the start of a new year is theperfect opportunity to clear out the clutter from your office and regain control over your schedule. Hereare a few simple suggestions for starting 2011 out the organized way!It’s easy for your cabinets and folders to become overstuffed with outdated paperwork, so it’simportant that you take time once a year to purge the old and make room for the new. Start with yourreference, client, and financial files. Ask yourself whether or not those documents will be relevantto your work in the coming year – completed projects and last year’s receipts should not be living inyour active files! If you might need to refer back to those papers at some point in the future (for legal,tax, or other reasons), move those items to an archive file out of your office in permanent storage. Butobsolete journal articles and memos that serve no real long-term purpose can be tossed or shredded.And if you find papers that have no logical home in your filing system, create a new folder with theappropriate category. When January 1 hits, you should be able to file any new document in seconds!Office clutter can take over throughout the year – you get busy, create a few piles here, a stack overthere, and suddenly you can’t see a single horizontal surface! Go around the room and collect up everyhomeless item you find, creating a set spot for each:− Supplies and equipment: Only keep what you use on a regular basis at your desk – then storethe “extras” in a cabinet or closet.− Books and periodicals: Store journals in a magazine holder grouped by title or topic.− Reference manuals: Keep loose brochures and sets of papers in expanding files or 3-ringbinders with Index Dividers between topics. Try Smead’s durable TUFF™ Expanding File® forfrequently accessed items.− Multimedia: To save space, remove CDs and DVDs from their jewel cases and store them infile folders with self-adhesive CD/DVD pockets.− Blank stationery items: Neatly stored in either stacking trays or a document sorter.− To-do’s: Set up a desk file sorter or hanging files with categories for each type of action – “tocall,” “to pay,” “to file,” “to read,” etc.Having an assigned storage space for everything makes it easier for you to maintain order after the firstof the year. Just take a few minutes at the end of each day to put things away (not hard when you knowwhere everything goes!)If you’re ending 2010 wishing you had accomplished more, now is the time to take a look at what gotin your way. Endless interruptions throughout your work day? Or did you just have a hard time gettingstarted on those bigger, more important projects? Decide now what you would like to accomplish inthe next year, then plan some uninterrupted time in your calendar to work toward these goals. Let yourboss know that you would like one day (or a half a day) each week to work on capturing a big account,implementing a major marketing strategy, or completing a large research project for the company. Youmight need to shut your door, turn off your phone, ignore your email, or even work from home on thatday – but your boss will probably be so thrilled at your initiative that she’ll do whatever it takes to helpyou succeed!
If you’d like to view a good post about using labels to organize your office, visit Get Buttoned Up. Anne Marie talks about using DYMO labelers to get the job done. I have received a DYMO LabelWriter 450 Duo from BzzAgent to review. I have yet to take it out of it’s box, but will do it soon. It prints postage, so I’m hoping to get my Christmas cards done this week and use the LabelWriter 450 to get my address labels and postage printed out!
Scheduling And Time Management At HomeTrying to coordinate your family’s schedule can seem like a monumental task. Work responsibilitiesfor mom and dad, extracurricular activities for the kids, trying to fit in chores and family time – howcan you possibly manage it with only 24 hours in the day? All it takes is a little advance planning!There is really only one way to avoid scheduling conflicts and last minute scrambles – and that isto set up a “family calendar.” Hang a large wall calendar in a high-traffic area of the house (kitchenseems to work well, because everyone goes there daily). Label each family member’s activities in adifferent color (Susie in blue, Jimmy in orange, mom in green, dad in red) for easy recognition. Thentake a second to record every single upcoming activity for each person in the family – meetings, socialengagements, sporting events, doctor appointments, you name it. Every time someone brings homean invitation to a party or permission slip for a field trip, write it down. Every time the school sendsout a calendar of upcoming days off, transfer it to the family calendar. When your boss asks if youcan work late or your child’s piano teacher wants to switch from Tuesday to Wednesday, change thecalendar. Get in the habit of putting EVERYTHING related to your family’s schedule in one place. Toget started, try out the Smead Organomics Family Calendar.The next step is to block off a regular weekly meeting with the entire family to go over your upcomingschedule. Take a look at any activities occurring within the next couple of weeks – address conflicts(ex: mom’s got to work late and Johnny needs a ride home from the game, so he should make plans togo with a friend), decide on any shopping trips you need for supplies (so you can bake cupcakes for theschool party or get Jimmy’s diorama put together), and add the week’s chores to the calendar. If youcarry a personal planner or PDA, this is also the time to update your portable calendar with the currentinfo (it doesn’t do you much good to plan out the week if you can’t see the schedule while you’reout of the house!) Your stress level will drop by a factor of ten, just having each person’s to-do’s andresponsibilities written down in one visible place.Get Ready The Night Before (Or Sooner!)Now that you have your schedule in order, you need to work on your daily routines. Getting readyin the morning is much easier if you start working on it the night before. Have your children spend15 minutes before they go to bed packing everything they need for school into their book bags. Askeach person to pick out the clothes they plan to wear the next day and lay them out on a chair. Makeeveryone’s lunches in advance and store them in the refrigerator overnight. Also consider setting upa “launching pad” – a table, chair, basket, or other container located near the door where each personcan put the supplies they will need the next day. If your kids can never seem to remember what theyneed for school, create a standard checklist for them – homework, band instrument, gym clothes, sportsequipment, supplies for any extracurricular activities, library books, whatever. You can even make anote of where they tend to leave things if that helps – “Gym Clothes: check the laundry basket.” Thegoal is to have everything in one place when it comes time to hit the road.
I currently have a family calendar but I don’t think it works the best for our family. I need to come up with a better calendar system for our family. I’d love to hear your ideas for home organization, especially in the kitchen. I feel like I can never get my kitchen and pantry in order. I need help!
For other organizational ideas you can visit SMEAD on Facebook.