Monday, January 7, 2013

How to Get It All Done and Still Stay Sane

Whether you keep your To-Do List in a
pretty little booklet like this, or electronically,
the important thing is to have a list!

Are you determined, like so many others, to get organized this year?

Do you plan to take your To-Do List more seriously every day? Are you determined to have a place for everything and everything in its place? Are you ready to tackle the unfinished projects that haunt you? 

When your home is for sale, staging it and keeping it show-ready, can feel overwhelming. But if you are managing your time well and have systems in place for where stuff goes, you’ll feel empowered. And that’s a great feeling!

I hope these tips -- my best tips for getting and staying organized – empower you on your way to getting that purchase offer.

Organization Tip 1: Think systems

If essentials are scattered throughout your living space, and you are always hunting for what you need, maybe it’s time to introduce some systems. This means grouping items according to their use.

It sounds like common sense, but do we do it? There’s always room for improvement.

And I don’t mean simply going out and buying the latest closet organizers. Although pretty boxes are sometimes the kick in the pants that gets you started.

Some examples: a box strictly for hanging pictures that holds nails, picture hanging hooks, hammer, Command picture hanging strips, ruler. A box that holds all your first aid supplies. A shelf for all baking essentials. A container that holds all the items waiting to be epoxy glue repaired. A bag for clothes on their way to Goodwill. Keep the container where it is easy to get to, and easy to put back. 

Do you have systems for common tasks?

Organization Tip 2: Simplify

Here’s where we talk about uncluttering your home. FlyLady suggests making regular sweeps of the house, grabbing what isn’t useful or attractive, and getting rid of it.

When simplification looks difficult, take it in small bites. You don’t really need to empty and reorganize your entire walk-in closet in one sweep. Simplify only the top shelf one day. Sort through just the shoes another day. Cull the out-of-season clothing another time. 

Are there areas of your home that are crowded or chaotic?    

Time Management Tip 1: Delegate
    
Learn to delegate to your team. I know you’ve heard this before. But for some of us, it doesn’t come easy. My advice, if you have trouble going to others for support, is to start small. Ask for little favors. Explain why it is important to you. Don't micromanage. Don't feel guilty for asking. And show appreciation.    

Make sure you have a team that you can delegate to. When you’re selling a home, you need support. Your realtor, your family, neighbors, tradespeople, friends – go to these people instead of shouldering every responsibility, even if it is just for advice. 

Are you reluctant to ask for help, yet afraid to say no when others ask you for help?
    
My husband is my best go-to guy. He has the right skills
and the right attitude. He took apart this bench, painted it,
and re-assembled it, without my even asking.

Time Management Tip 2: Prioritize

Planning your day ahead of time is one of the best ways to accomplish goals. In fact, having weekly and monthly goals will help even more. List what you want to do, and what you need to do, then prioritize these items. Don’t let minor disruptions take you off track. Go back to your plan. 

If you aren’t sure where your time goes, keep a log book of how you spend hours for one week. It’s bound to be eye-opening. We all know that we waste time, but seeing exactly how much time can be what it takes to change our habits. You don’t have to kiss Pinterest and Facebook goodbye, but you can save them for “dessert” when you’ve checked off more pressing chores. 

Are you making a distinction between important tasks and just putting out fires?  

Mental Health Tip 1: Balance

Everyone needs time alone to recharge batteries and clear the mind. But too much time in isolation makes anyone a bit brittle and stagnant. Find the combination that feeds you, that lets you accomplish what must be done and still lets you engage with others.

Each of us has a personal magic ratio that represents the best way to divide our time between being in the company of others and being alone. I have a friend who has an armoir in her garage she would love to paint, yet she constantly postpones it. When I asked why she doesn’t do it, she said, she knew she’d be all by herself all the time she was working on it. For me, working on something like that in solitude would be relaxing, but for her, it’s drudgery.  

Are you aware of how much time you need to yourself and how much time you need with others?    

Mental Health Tip 2: Take Charge

Discover what makes you feel relaxed, strong, happy. Making a “Gains and Drains List” can help. Once you know what things drain your energy and what adds to your sense of well-being, you’ve got a great start on re-structuring your days.

For example, I know that music, humor, and being outside are what improve the quality of my life, so I make sure these perks are part of my day every day. And television news, clutter, and being around negative people is something I routinely avoid.

Do you know what specifically fills you up, and also what makes you feel downright crappy? 

For More Specific Tips

For the nuts and bolts info on staging your home for sale, download my $5 pdf eBook, DIY Home Staging Tips to Sell Your Home Fast and for Top Dollar. My book has helped hundred of people sell their homes faster for more money, and I guarantee it will help you, or I’ll give you your money back!   

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