Reproducing the Vacation Tranquility at Home

A client of mine told me a story of how she had to move out of her home temporarily and live in a much smaller apartment. She only took her utmost essentials. When she was able to move back into her home, she came to the sudden realization that she was able to live happily with very little and is currently on a mission to purge the unessential from her life. I thought to myself, “That is exactly how I feel when I get back from a vacation.” Have you ever gone on vacation and realized when you came home that you had lived quite easily without all the “stuff” in your home? Would you like to recreate that feeling again (without having to move out of your house) so you are motivated to purge the clutter from your home? read more

Real World Organization: Wall of Games

My husband and I have some friends who like games just as much as we do.  I’m talking about board games.  While this is a great hobby, it does create the need for a way to store a large volume of boxes and game containers.

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My friends created this awesome shelving system to store and display their games.  Long pieces of wood shelving were attached to L brackets attaching the shelves to the wall.  The open concept makes it very easy to see all the games that are available and easy to put away after playing. read more

The Reach Ability Factor

Reach Ability Factor
by Janine Cavanaugh, CPO®

In organizing, just like real estate, it’s all about location, location, location.  Where we permanently and temporarily place our belongings, papers, projects and information, is important because it helps us find what we want when we need it.  The Reach Ability Factor is a system that helps us decide the best location for things based on how frequently we use them.  We have 4 sections.

  • Section A:  Items in this section are things we use daily, like our toothbrush, our favorite coffee mug, and underclothes.  Everything in section A is easy to reach, all we have to do is reach out an grab it.
  • Section B:  Items in this section are things we use weekly but not necessarily daily, like our workout clothes, and specific utensils or dishes.  Everything in section B requires us to move a little, but still within comfortable reach.
  • Section C:  Items in this section are things we use occasionally, like suitcases,  a food processor, and extra blankets.  Everything in section C requires us to exert more effort to reach, like bending down or using a step stool.
  • Section D:  Items in this section are things we use once a year, like holiday decorations, or things you can’t part with like our wedding gown.  Everything in section D would be in a remote storage area like the basement, attic, or a cabinet that is more difficult to reach.

The Reach Ability Factor is meant as a guide to help individuals evaluate the best location for their belongings.  What is a perfect spot for one person is not the best spot for another.  Organizing is personal.
Please note that it’s important to concentrate efforts on one’s current lifestyle and reevaluate the placement of items once a year. read more

Getting the Most Out of a Professional Seminar

Whether your attending a professional development seminar for your job or a presentation about a personal interest, I wanted to share with you some of the things I do to get the most out of my investment of time and money.

1. Bring a way to take notes, whether that be a paper and pen or your laptop.  You will be bombarded with ideas and new information during the seminar, and you will never be able to remember it all.

2.  As you take notes, focus on the following:

  • Quotes/Key ideas – Capture the little “nuggets” that you want to take away, remember, and share with others
  • Ideas to Try – You’re not commiting to anything here, but if you hear a new idea that you may want to try back at work (or wherever), write it down.
  • Resources/Products – Hear of something that will make your job easier?  Learn of a new company that provides a relevant service?  Write it down!

3. Bring a drink and some snacks to keep you alert as the day goes on. read more