NO’vember marches on. We’ve had our first cold snap and begrudgingly, I have made the seasonal clothing switch.

This fall, I assessed each piece of clothing before putting it away.

  • Does it still fit?
  • Do I still wear it?
  • Do I even like it anymore?

If no, I released it on to someone else. How wonderful to be able to give two shopping bags of clothes for someone who isn’t as fortunate. If you struggle letting go of something, focus on how it will benefit the next person.

If you want to go all Marie Kondo, you can ask yourself if your shirt sparks joy, then thank it when it doesn’t. Completely cool. We could all use a little Marie Kondo’ing in our lives.

Clutter is postponed decisions®.

Every time I put a piece of clothing back it represents a decision not yet made. Easy to see this in your closet, right? The fat jeans are the decision that maybe someday I’ll feel puffy and need them. The skinny jeans are the hope that I’ll finally those last 10 pounds and get back into them.

No shame. No judgement. Reality. Most people will admit they have one or the other or both of said jeans.

But they may not admit this around the stuff in their office –

  • the defunct files on the client that we might need someday
  • the 20 years of receipts that we might be asked for in an audit
  • the boxes of outdated marketing materials that we don’t even hand out anymore.

That’s because paper is highly emotionally charged.

Wait for it…

Decluttering is a way of saying no. You had to know that’s where this was going.

Where to start?

Glad you asked.

Every paper has only one of three possible decisions:

  • File
  • Act
  • Toss

If the idea of decluttering your office is way too overwhelming, set a timer for 15 minutes and quit when it rings. Work quickly through the one pile of papers on your desk. I’ll bet you make amazing headway.

Give yourself a “treat” after the 15 minutes. It doesn’t have to be a cookie or a candy bar, though I really like both.

I kept looking for the homemade cookies at yesterday’s conference. Because if you’re going to spend 7 hours in a classroom learning a software system when tech makes you cringe, well then cookies! They were served during our 2pm break – perfection! The class was fantastic by the way. But that’s a future email.

Seriously, your reward takes only 5 minutes. It can be a walk, a cup of coffee, a game of Candy Crush, a quick chat with a colleague down the hall, 5 minutes of quiet meditation.

What fills you up? Do that.

Tossing is the hardest decision. We all have a fear of letting things go. That’s where the Art of Wastebasketry® comes in.

As you go through your papers, ask yourself the following questions:

1.    Does this item require action?
2.    Can I identify a specific use for it?
3.    Is it difficult to obtain again?
4.    Is it recent enough to be useful?
5.    Are there tax or legal implications?
6.    What is the worst thing that can happen without it?

Give it a try. Tackle just one pile of papers today. Let me know how it goes!

Still struggling? Sometimes it takes an accountability partner. Again, no judgement.

The first time I organized my office using this system, my assistant joined me for the day. I could not have done it alone. Paper was my arch-nemesis. Sometimes it still is. We’re talking progress not perfection people.

This process is way more fun with another person, especially one who has been there and done that.

And guess what? You already KNOW the person who can help! ME!

Say NO to the sh*t show and yes to the dough.

You in? Schedule a call here.

Productivity by Design™



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@2020 Productivity by Design™
Catherine Avery
Productivity by Design
357 Commerce Drive, 1104
Fairfield CT, 06825.

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