Virtual Organizing – who, why, where, what

Who would use virtual organizing services?

For clients who:

  • wish to do the “hands-on “organizing themselves
  • are uncertain about someone coming into their home,
  • want a cost-effective way to get organized
  • need to manage their organizing appointments to fit a complex schedule
  • need support to stay focused

Why would I offer this service?

Virtual organizing allows me to:

  • spend less time driving and more time organizing  providing support to my clients through prearranged online meetings
  • have clients all around the world
  • keep working with clients that move away
  • do organizing while coaching, teaching, supporting and mentoring clients

What would a virtual organizing session look like

There are probably as many ways to do virtual organizing as there are organizers.  Here are my 2 formats.

Format 1 for the DIYers = 3 conversations, a plan, follow up support

To keep the process simple, only one room will be discussed at a time.

The process consists of:

  1. After you contact me, I book an intake conversation over the phone, Skype or e-mail to describe the process.  You can send me photos or a video so I understand your situation clearly and to use them as reference. It  is about 15 minutes long
  2. I book a Virtual Appointment using Zoom or Skype, Face Time, Google Hangout, Facebook to see the room and discuss your organizing goals. It is about 45 minutes in length.
  3. I develop a step by step plan and send it to you so you have your customized organizing plan to follow.
  4. After you have had time to read the plan, I book a virtual question and answer session to allow you to clarify the plan and establish a timeline for the project. It is about 15 minutes long.

Once a timeline has been established for the project one of two follow up options may be selected.

Support Option A This works well for people who manage their time well and are motivated to get the job done. 

You will work on the project and e-mail pictures or set up a Skype call as needed to help:

  • solve problems,
  • clarify the next step,
  • receive storage suggestions.
  • receive donation and recycling information.

 Support Option B This works well for people who are easily distracted or procrastinate in getting the space organized.

  • You will e-mail the day and time they will be working on the job.
  • I will e-mail, Skype, text or call each hour to see what assistance you need in order to successfully complete the work scheduled for that day.

In Format 1 most of my time is spent on the process of building the customized plan.  Most of your time is spent on implementing the customized organizing plan. Some time is spent on supporting the work sessions.

Format 2 for the person who doesn’t want to work alone = This process is very similar to working with an organizer in person

  1. After you contact me, I book an intake conversation over the phone, Skype or e-mail to describe the process.   You can send me photos or a video so I understand your situation clearly and to use them as reference. It takes about 15 minutes
  2. I book a Virtual Appointment using Zoom or  Skype, Face Time, Google Hangouts, Facebook to see the room and discuss your organizing goals and begin organizing. You will have the computer /tablet in the room with you while you are working. I will be teaching you skills, keeping you focused and supporting you. I will help you with the process of sorting, reducing, establishing a space to store things, containers to use and discussing the next steps.  The sessions may include: where to donate items, how to sell items and where to recycle items.  The session will be between 2-3 hours.
  3. We decide on the next appointment time and continue working with the client until the job is completed.

In Format 2 most of the time is spent together getting the space organized. Virtual organizing allows an organizer to support your organizing projects by providing planning, coaching and mentoring. Click To Tweet

To book a complimentary 30 minute virtual assessment use this link   or contact me directly at julie@mindoverclutter.ca 

For more information check my Virtual Organizing Services on my website 

POC Gold Leaf crestJulie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

 

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7 Tips for organizing your laundry routine

No matter how beautiful and organized your laundry area looks, if you don’t have a routine for getting laundry to the washer, into the dry and back to bedrooms you will still have a problem.  These tips will help you establish a routine that will work in your household.

Collect the laundry

1. Keep a central collection area for your laundry close to where people change.  The main bathroom, near the bedrooms, is often a good choice. Keep three hampers – one each for light, medium and dark-coloured clothing. Make sure everyone knows to empty pockets, because no one else is going to check. You may prefer to have each person have their own bin in their room.

Have everyone in the family sort their laundry and put it in the hamper.

2. Keep a stain remover nearby so that everyone can treat the stains on their own clothing.  Children may need help with the most difficult, like blood.  Use shampoo without conditioner on grease stains. Once stains are treated, fold the clothing to prevent stain remover from touching the hamper. Remember to place clothing in the correct laundry hamper.

Schedule time

3. Establish a day when the laundry will be washed.  Clothing will need to be in the hamper and someone will bring it to the laundry room. You may need to establish a day or time for each member  to do their own laundry.

Set timers

4.  As you’re placing clothing into the washer or dryer set a time on your phone, stove, clock so you remember to switch the clothing to the dryer or take it out of the dryer.  It is easy to forget that the washer or dryer has completed the cycle if it isn’t near where you are working.  Then time passes and you didn’t get much laundry done that day, the clothing in the dryer is very wrinkled  or the damp clothing has an unpleasant oder.Setting up routines makes it easier to accomplish tasks taking less energy and time to complete them Click To Tweet

Organize an area 

5.   Have a table or space available so you can fold and pile items as they are removed from the dryer. Making piles of clothing allows people to come and pick up their clothes and put them away.  If you have small children in the home place their piles of clothing on their bed, pants, tops, underware, socks etc and help them to learn to put it away in the correct spot.  It is a skill that will last them a life time.

6. Have a place to hang up clothes – a line, door hooks or a free-standing wire rack.  Don’t spend your time folding clothes that get unfolded once they reach the bedroom.  Hang them up straight out of the dryer.

7. Establish a laundry supply shelf or cupboard.  Be sure to have a variety of supplies available so you can easily handle any stain – detergent, bleach, shampoo, stain remover, a bar of laundry soap – and quick hand-washing items.  Include a basin so you can conveniently soak or hand wash items.

For tips and articles to help you organize your mind and space  join Julie’s Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space 

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

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10 Downsizing your fears tips

If you are having trouble beginning the process of downsizing remember:

 1. Embrace your new lifestyle.

A small house on a green yard

2. You are still the same person; you just choose to have fewer belongings.

3. Simplicity reduces stress.

4. Saying “goodbye” to the past can open new doors in your future.

5. Your worth in is who you are and what you do, not in what you own.

6. Start with easy items to downsize and then move to the items that have sentimental value that are harder to let go of.

7. You are good at making decisions, you can let go of things and nothing bad will happen.

8. You have control of your situation, pick the time that is right for you to downsize your lifestyle.

9. You will have fewer possessions to take care of, maintain, store and organize and more time for things that are important in your life now.

10. Find a “downsizing buddy” and support each other in your project to downsize your lifestyles.  It is always easier when you have someone to talk to that is going through the same thing.The things you own should help you become the person you want to be. Click To Tweet

There are 3 ways I can assist you.

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

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Have you been putting something off?

Here is an excerpt from a great article on why we procrastinate and tips on how to stop procrastinating.

“You know how it goes. One part of your brain says –

“Stop procrastinating. Just get on with it. Finish it!”

But then another part screams-

“But I don’t want to!”

Ziegarnik effect

It may not be anything major, but the task keeps niggling at the back of your mind. It can leave you feeling unsettled, slightly annoyed and stressed. Here’s the thing: you can’t be fully at peace until you complete the task. Why? Because the Ziegarnik effect is in full swing. The Ziegarnik effect is the tendency we have to worry about something we have started and haven’t yet finished. But if you can just get it done, your brain will breathe a sigh of relief. You will feel lighter. Chances are you will have turbocharged energy levels too.”

Read the entire article at  http://learningfundamentals.com.au/blog/how-to-motivate-yourself-at-any-time/

Procrastinating, why do you do it?

There are  tasks or projects that needs to be completed and they are  getting put off to the side and nothing is being done.  Many times the problems is that you don’t know what to do.  Break the task or project in smaller pieces that so you can start on the things your know how and complete them.  As you continue you will find the parts you are not sure how to handle.  When you have determined the part that is outside your knowledge, ask for help, do research or delegate to someone with that expertise.  Let procrastination be a trigger to look at the situation as a problem solving question instead of an activity you don’t like to do.

For tips and articles to help you organize your mind and space  join Julie’s Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space 

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

 

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Organizing your photos, how many do you have?

Quick Tip: Estimating Photos from APPO

Association of Personal Photo Organizers www.appo.org

No need to count every photo in the box, especially if you are working with hundreds of printed photos for a job. Instead, use a ruler or a scale. Did you know 1 inch of printed photos stacked is about 100 photos? If you are estimating a shoebox packed full of printed photos, get your ruler out and measure the length of the box for a reasonable estimate of quantity. And 1000 photos weigh between 6 and 7 lbs, so set the tub of  photos on a scale instead! APPO are the experts in photo organizing.

A pile of photographs in a mess on the floor.

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Quick Tip: Sorting Photos

Instead of trying to sort photos chronologically sort them by topics.  Photos tell stories. By sorting using topics you will get stories on vacations, cars you’ve owned, children’s lives, pets, flowers, scenery etc.  Pick any topics that suits your life and start making piles.  As you’re sorting, get rid of ones that are out of focus, duplicates, one you don’t recognize the people or setting.

Scrapbooking, photo albums or photo boxes

Once your photos are sorted, label each pile by theme or date and store them.  You may want to do a scrapbooking project with them, organize them in photo albums or store them in photo boxes.  I choose photo boxes for my pictures.  It was quick and easy to put each category in an envelope, label it and place them in a photo box.  I used the envelopes that the photos cam in from the store and cut off the flap.  You can use moreattractive envelopes and use colouring coding  too.  You might just want to use dividers cut from cardboard or bought at a stationary store.

A photo box containing envelopes with sets of pictures in each envelope relating to a theme.

The boxes can be archive  quality or from the dollar store.  I found they took up less space then photo albums and took less time to get the photos put away neatly.

An archival photo box with 4x6 sections 8x 10 envelope and a section for panoramic photos

This box holds 4 x6  photos, panoramic photos and has an envelope for large (8 x10) photos.

To digitize or not to digitize?

Digitizing all your pictures may not get you the results you want.  They will take up less physical space but they will still be unorganized in the cloud or on your computer.  Digitizing your entire photo collection can be expensive. Use a reputable company so your photos don’t get lost or damaged. I always suggest to my clients that they only digitize a small portion of their photos.  Selected the best or best photos and put them in a folder with a title.   When you send them off to be digitize tell them to put it in a folder with the same name.  When you have them back in the cloud or on your computer you will be able to easily find them and enjoy them.  You may want to have them on a digital photo frame. If you want share a photo or 2 or 3 to someone quickly, you can take a picture of the photo with your phone or tablet and send it to them.

Share how  you store your photos?

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

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Building your perfect custom closet: 5 Steps to consider

My guest blogger this month is Spencer Andrews a representative of More Space Place, a Greenville area leader in closet, office, and garage organization. He has included 5 pictures of different types of closets.

Thinking of upgrading your closet space? Adding a brand new custom closet system to your home can be an exciting prospect. After all, optimizing your storage means you’ll be able to rid your home of clutter and enjoy a cleaner house.

The are a few things to remember, however. Just like any other home improvement project a custom closet has several pitfalls that can have disastrous consequences. Low-quality materials can break and hasty installations can lead to damage to your home requiring thousands of dollars of costly repairs.

To help you avoid such a thing we’ve put together this guide to help you make the appropriate considerations. These 5 steps are what we think are the most important and will help ensure that you’re satisfied with your brand new closet.

Step #1: Plan your design & research your options

Just like with any other project, the success of your custom closet installation is contingent upon diligent research and proper planning. The most important thing to determine is the materials you’ll be using for your closet system. There are plenty of economic options available, but how sturdy are they? Particleboard is affordable, but composites can be easily damaged and don’t deal well with moisture. Furthermore, installing laminates can require working with highly flammable and toxic adhesives, which some homeowners may not be comfortable with. These materials may be more affordable, but will generally have a diminished life span. This is just one example of the kind of research you’ll need to do.

Of course, the other thing to remember is making sure you have all the tools you need to handle this installation. This is by and large a function of the materials you’ll be working with, and once you’ve determined that you’ll have to make sure you have the right tools.

Step #2: Acquire your materials

 

 When you’re buying the materials for your closet’s installation remember this one simple rule: not all materials are created equal. Take the time to compare the different building supplies you’ll be buying. Boards can warp and deform and may not retain their shape. Take the time to inspect everything you’ll be using to ensure that it’s up to par. Substandard materials can be disastrous for a project like this, and there’s nothing worse than taking multiple unwanted trips to the hardware store. Save yourself a headache and work only with the highest quality goods.

This can also mean using wire closet systems. These tend to be more reliable when compared with particleboard. These will also be more consistent in terms of quality, alleviating many of the headaches associated with less durable materials. That being said, it’s important to do your homework early on and decide what material you think will work best for you.

Step #3: Take your measurements & prepare for installation

 

Is the room you’re installing your new closet system in completely square? Can you fit all the tools you’ll be using in your closet space? Will your closet system completely cover your wall or should you consider wallpaper or paint to complement your new installation?

These are all considerations to take into account before you begin building your custom closet. If your closet comes out off-center or looks crooked because of the shape of the room it can really detract from the visual appeal of your new closet system. Furthermore, adding a new coat of paint or wallpaper can really help to improve your closet system, so make sure you have that in place beforehand!

Step #4: Begin building your closet system

While this may be a fairly obvious step, this is where all the hard work and potential problems may occur. The most important thing to consider here is whether or not you have the time to put together a brand new closet system in your home. Furthermore, you may need to consider if you have the experience for such a project. Installations such as these can be demanding and may require the expertise of an experienced team. If you find yourself in over your head consider looking for a custom closet designer who can help you out with your project. These services also tend to be comprehensive, which means that can also help you with the design & picking out the right materials.

Enjoy Your New Closet!

 After putting in all this hard work, it’s time to enjoy your new custom closet! Consider what you’re going to do with all this new space and check out some other space-saving options. Amazon has plenty of corner storage, stackable bins, and space-saving solutions that can help to make your new closet even more efficient.

Thinking of upgrading your current closet space? Greenville More Space Place is the Greenville SC Custom Closet design team that can help make your idea a reality.

Let me know what the most important feature of a closet is for you?

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

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Is your work environment keeping you from working?

Here is a short excerpt from an article by Harold Taylor.  Harold Taylor is a time management and productivity expert.

Change your  environment in some way to offset your natural inclination to avoid doing things you don’t like.

You can minimize destractions:

  • turn off your cellphone,
  • disengage voicemail,
  • turn off email alerts and
  • close your office door at specific times while you work on your priority projects.

image by Jason-Salmon

You can minimize visual distractions:

  • remove all clutter and other potential distractions from your immediate work area
  • including any in-baskets, they give you an excuse to chat with the person dropping off paper
  • don’t have family photos or memorabilia in your line of sight
  • face a blank wall, not a window or open doorway.

You can set-up a work schedule:

  • Work on projects for 60 or 90 minutes at a time – maximum.
  • Then change to another type of work for 15 minutes
  • Work on a project for 60-90 minutes
  • Then take a 30 minute break, doing something completely different from your previous work
  • Work for 60 monre minutes on a project

If you find that’s too long to postpone urges to interrupt yourself, shorten the work sessions. You can always increase them gradually later. Between sessions you can check email, return phone calls and grab a coffee. Work in short sprints rather than attempt marathons. Research shows that it takes a lot of energy to practice willpower.

Resist the temptation to interrupt yourself

Do what you can to develop a work environment that makes it easier to resist the temptation of interrupting yourself or others, checking email constantly, grabbing for your smartphone whenever there’s a call or being distracted by other things.

To subscribe to his monthly  newsletter on Time Management go to www.taylorintime.com

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 Twitter – https://twitter.com/Julieorganizer Facebook – http://facebook.com/mindoverclutter/  

Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space https://www.facebook.com/groups/1881280812154271/

What to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

https://mindoverclutter.ca/what-does-a-professional-organizer-do/

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My favourite time management technique

No Wifi, oh no

My favourite time management technique is to know when I will have a WiFi connection and when I won’t.  Yes, there are still times and places when I can’t get WiFi.  Use data? Not me. For those time I plan to have work with me to do when I am unconnected.  You might think, “when does that ever happen”, more often than you think:

  • When I  arrive early at a client’s home
  • When I arrive early to pick up someone
  • When the person I am pickup arrives late
  • When the client is late
  • When the distance between appointments and returning to the office will cause me to waste time commuting, I find a quiet location to work instead of wasting my time driving.

Plan your time

I will have a book along to read to do some professional education,  mail to open or start on my e-mail that I downloaded before I left for the call.  Sometimes I am reviewing a speech I am presenting, signing holiday cards, planning my week/ month or getting in my exercise by going for a walk.  Using these small expected or unexpected amounts of time well will make you more productive.  I learned this technique by trial and error.  I found myself sitting around waiting with nothing to do when my children were involved in activities.  I quickly realized that I was wasting a lot of time and needed to plan my “spare time” as well as my work time to be able to get everything accomplished without using my family time or free time to get things completed.

Manage yourself

Time management is not about managing time it is about managing yourself.  There are traps we fall into that cause anxiety and stress because:

  • we are late,
  • we don’t meet deadlines,
  • we miss meetings,
  • we are unavailable for important personal events

Determine what “traps” cause you to miss mange your behaviour making you late.  Are they:

  • doing one more thing that makes you late
  • underestimating how much time you need to get ready and leave ( the house, for a meeting)
  • thinking your time  are more important than the people’s time who are waiting for you (to arrive, hand in a report), they won’t mind waiting
  • procrasting on projects, reports and committments instead of looking for a solution to be able to complete the task on tim

I can help you manage your time and streamline your routines to increase your productivity.  Give me a call or text 905-321-1616 

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 Twitter – https://twitter.com/Julieorganizer Facebook – http://facebook.com/mindoverclutter/  

Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space https://www.facebook.com/groups/1881280812154271/

What to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

https://mindoverclutter.ca/what-does-a-professional-organizer-do/

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7 Tips to Reduce Paper Clutter

Harry Potter Film Studio, England 2017

We use 20% of the stuff we own. Keep the 20% of paper that is important and discard the other 80% . Click To Tweet

1. Don’t allow paper to build up

  • Handle paper daily, don`t let it grow into a pile
  • Place all paper in one location, don’t let it travel all over the home
  • Open mail and discard the envelop and advertising
  • Schedule a time to file, make calls, pay bills etc

 

2. Make a decision on each paper the first time you touch it

  • If it can be done in 60 seconds or less to it now, otherwise R.A.F.T it
  • Set up 3 files, bins or trays and sort your paper into:
  • R – read later
  • A – action required
  • F – file
  • T – toss it / shred it now

3. Follow through on work

  • Each time you pick a sheet of paper put a small dot on the top corner.
  • Three dots or more means it is time to take action on that piece of paper.
  • If you are procrastinating about what to do, it probably means you are not sure how to solve the problem in the paperwork.  Ask for advise, designate it to someone else, research the issue or break it into smaller parts you can complete.

4.  Be ruthless

  • 80% of what is filed is never accessed again, so 80% or more of the paper you receive on a daily basis can be discarded
  • Clear out your files once or twice a year
  • Remove yourself from subscription lists

5. Think before you print

  • File e-mails  in a folder on the computer
  • Print only the selection of the e-mail or webpage you need

6. Store inactive files in boxes indicating a destroy date

7.  Follow retention guidelines

  • Retain files as specified by your company or accountant
  • Put inactive files in boxes and place them in storage indicating a destroy date on the box
  • Clear out outdated files

For more great office organizing ideas  read “Don’t Agonize Organize Your Office” by Diane A Hatcher

If you need help with your paper organizing  book a complimentary discovery organizing session with me.  Organizing Session

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

 TwitterFacebook Facebook group Organizing Mind and Space

Click here to learn more about working with a Professional Organizer?

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Organizing your goals for the new year.

When you hire me, I don’t come to your office or home with the Mind over Clutter organizing system, install it and then leave.  I come and see what is working for you and how you do things so I can find solutions that work for you, how you think, feel and your lifestyle. I want you to accomplish your organizing project so you meets your goals.

January is usually the time for goal setting and so I want to present three ways of setting goals.

Pick one  area and improve it

I am a person who is motivated by a fear of failure, I don’t want to fail, so I am a cautious. My system of setting goals is to look at my business or life and see where I think it could be improved, what types of skills I need to improve so my business or life will improve.  I pick one thing and then work on it all year to get better at it.  For example I didn’t like social media so I decided to start working at becoming better at it and setting up a system that works for my day and philosophy about the importance of social media.  I picked a platform, got good at it and continued to add more and more platforms. I organized workshops on Twitter and Google+, I listened to webinars.   A vague plan works for me because  I am self motivated,  I am not a procrastinator.  I read an interesting article by Ravi Venkatesan about the importance of  learning new things, “What skill will you acquire this year? What new activity will you start? Perhaps learning to play a new instrument, going on an adventure or taking on a new role- anything that causes you to move out of your comfort zone and allow new neural connections to form” would be a good new year’s goal.

S.M.A.R.T Goals

Set goals that you can attain

That  vague framework of deciding what you want to do to improve your business or life  would not for everyone.  We are all different.  So there is a goal setting system called SMART.  You pick a specific goal, with measurable outcomes, that are  achievable, realistic and timely.  When you use this system of goal setting it gives you a step by step plan to follow.  For example with my social media goal, if it had been a SMART goal, would be something like

I will learn how to post on Facebook,

S (specific) – I will post 3 times a week, one original content, one a picture, one comment on someone else’s post

M(measureable) – Did I post 3 times/week?

A (achievable)  – I have that much time in my week

R(realistic) – If I only have to do it 3 times a week I will not become frustrated and stop

T(timely)- I have 3 mornings a week when I can do these posts. Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday

This will work for some people who like to have a step by step plan and follow it.  It can cause problems if  people stop following the plan they may give up and not start again or some people may feel like it is too rigid.

Turn desire into intention

Be intentional about your plan

I read an article that reveals a simple trick that doubles the chance for success of obtaining goals.  Earlier I commented on what motivates me.  Sometimes we say, I need to motivate myself to get working on….,  In this article it says motivation is not the key to reaching your goals it is intention .

A study in the British Journal of Health Psychology divided 248 adult into 3 groups exercise groups.

  • Group  1 had to record how often they exercised during a 3 week period
  • Group 2 where told “ most young adults who have stuck to a regular exercise program have found it to be very effective in reducing their chances of developing coronary heart disease. ” ( motivation to exercise) and had to record how often they exercise during a 3 week period
  • Group 3  recorded when and where they would exercise (intention to exercise), they were given the same motivation as group 2  and they recorded  how often they exercised during a 3 week period

Results

  • Control group 1 38% exercised at least once per week
  • The motivated group 2 35% exercised at least once per week
  • The intentional group 3 91% exercised at least once per week

We all have some level of desire or will power or motivation but what turns desire into action is a written plan for implementation.  When you have a goal to do something, record when and how you will do that behaviour or activity. It will be the  environment that triggers you to do your new behaviour or activity and not motivation or will power.

These are just 3 systems

  • Having an all encompassing vision or
  • Setting SMART goals or
  • Intentionally deciding  when you will do something and blocking off time

that can help you establish new behaviours to accomplish a goal for 2020.  Pick the one that works for you.

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Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She enjoys working with her clients to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She reduces clutter, streamlines processes and manages time to help her clients be more effective in reaching their goals. Julie can coach you to break-free of the physical or emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. 

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

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