Overcome Procrastination TODAY. Do Not Put Things Off… Again

Overcome Procrastination TODAY. Do Not Put Things Off… Again

Whether it is putting off tasks until the last minute or avoiding them altogether, procrastination can hinder productivity, increase stress, and sabotage our goals. Fear not, though, for effective strategies exist to overcome procrastination and to reclaim control of your time and energy.

Understanding Procrastination

Before diving into solutions, it is essential to understand why we procrastinate. Procrastination often stems from various factors, including:

  • Fear of failure: The fear that our efforts will not meet expectations can lead us to delay starting a task.
  • Perfectionism: Striving for perfection can paralyze us as we wait for the perfect conditions or ideas.
  • Lack of motivation: When tasks seem overwhelming or uninteresting, it is easy to procrastinate rather than tackle them.
  • Poor time management: Without clear priorities or deadlines, it is tempting to postpone tasks indefinitely.

 Strategies to Combat Procrastination

  • Set Clear Goals and Priorities: Define specific, achievable goals and break them down into manageable tasks. Prioritize tasks based on urgency and importance to focus your efforts effectively.
  • Create a Structured Schedule: Establish a daily or weekly schedule that allocates dedicated time slots for tasks and activities. Set realistic deadlines for each task to create a sense of urgency and accountability.
  • Use Time Management Techniques: Techniques like the Pomodoro Technique (working in focused intervals with short breaks) or time-blocking (allocating specific blocks of time for different tasks) can help improve focus and productivity.
  • Combat Perfectionism: Accept that perfection is unattainable and focus on progress over perfection. Set realistic expectations for yourself and celebrate small victories along the way.
  • Break Tasks Into Smaller Steps: Divide larger tasks into smaller, more manageable steps to reduce overwhelm and make progress more attainable. Celebrate each completed step as a win.
  • Eliminate Distractions: Identify and minimize distractions in your environment, whether it is turning off notifications, creating a designated workspace, or using website blockers to limit time-wasting activities.
  • Utilize Accountability Partners: Share your goals and progress with a trusted friend, family member, or colleague who can provide support and accountability. Regular check-ins can help keep you motivated and on track.
  • Practice Self-Compassion: Be kind to yourself when you experience setbacks or struggle to stay on track. Recognize that occasional procrastination is normal and focus on learning from mistakes rather than dwelling on them.
  • Visualize Success: Visualize the positive outcomes of completing tasks and achieving your goals. Use this imagery to stay motivated and remind yourself of the benefits of acting.
  • Reward Yourself: Establish rewards for completing tasks or reaching milestones to incentivize progress. Whether it is a small treat, a break to indulge in a favorite activity, or simply acknowledging your achievements, celebrate your efforts along the way.

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When Renting a Storage Unit Makes Sense and When it Does Not

When Renting a Storage Unit Makes Sense and When it Does Not

In today’s fast-paced world, our lives often overflow with belongings. From sentimental keepsakes to practical necessities, our possessions accumulate, sometimes outpacing the space available in our homes. When faced with this dilemma, many turn to storage units as a solution. However, while they can be incredibly convenient, there are times when renting a storage unit might not be the best option. Keep in mind that the goal is not just to create space but to create a lifestyle that aligns with your values and priorities.

 When Renting a Storage Unit Makes Sense

  • Temporary Transition Periods: During transitional phases of life, such as moving to a new city, renovating a home, or downsizing, a storage unit can be a lifesaver. It provides a safe space to temporarily store belongings while you navigate changes in your living situation.
  • Seasonal Items: Items like holiday decorations, seasonal sports equipment, or bulky winter clothing often take up valuable space in our homes when not in use. A storage unit can keep these items out of sight and out of mind until they’re needed again, freeing up space for everyday living.
  • Business Storage: For small businesses or entrepreneurs lacking office or warehouse space, renting a storage unit can serve as a cost-effective solution. It provides a secure location to store inventory, equipment, or documents without the need for a dedicated commercial space.
  • Hobby or Collection Storage: Hobbies and collections can quickly outgrow the available space in a home. Whether it’s a collection of vintage vinyl records, classic cars, or crafting supplies, a storage unit offers a dedicated space to house these passions without cluttering living areas.
  • Emergency Preparedness: In regions prone to natural disasters like hurricanes, floods, or wildfires, having a storage unit can be crucial for storing emergency supplies, important documents, or irreplaceable items. It provides peace of mind knowing that essential items are safe and accessible in times of crisis.

 When You Should Not Rent a Storage Unit

  • Long-Term Storage of Unused Items: Renting a storage unit to house items that you rarely or never use can quickly become a financial burden. Before committing to a storage rental, carefully assess whether the items are truly worth the ongoing cost of storage.
  • Clutter Management: Using a storage unit as a Band-Aid solution for clutter in your home without addressing the root cause can lead to a cycle of accumulating more stuff. Instead, focus on decluttering and organizing your living space to create a more functional environment.
  • Financial Strain: If renting a storage unit stretches your budget or causes financial strain, it may not be a sustainable solution. Consider alternative options such as selling, donating, or repurposing items to reduce the need for additional storage space.
  • Lack of Regular Access: If you rarely visit your storage unit or have difficulty accessing it due to distance or restricted operating hours, reconsider whether the cost and inconvenience outweigh the benefits of keeping the items stored there.
  • Sentimental Attachment: While sentimental items hold emotional value, storing them in a storage unit where they remain out of sight and out of mind may not be the best way to honor their significance. Instead, integrate these items into your living space or find alternative ways to preserve their memory.

Storage units cost money each month. Make sure what you are storing is worth your hard-earned money. Too often, items kept out of sight and out of mind really adds up over the years.

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Ten Tips for Mastering the Art of Managing Your Mail and Bills

Ten Tips for Mastering the Art of Managing Your Mail and Bills

In our digital age, where emails and electronic communication reign supreme, the tangible mailbox might seem like a relic of the past. However, for many of us, paper mail and bills still find their way into our lives on a regular basis. Without proper organization, these physical documents can quickly become overwhelming, leading to missed payments, misplaced important documents, and unnecessary stress.

But fear not! With a few simple strategies and a bit of dedication, you can take control of your mailbox and conquer the chaos of paper clutter. Here below is a comprehensive guide to organizing mail and bills.

Designate a Mail Sorting Station

Designate a specific area in your home to sort through mail as soon as it arrives. It could be a desk, a countertop, or a dedicated mail sorting basket. The key is to have a designated space where you can immediately process incoming mail.

Sort Into Categories
As you sort through your mail, divide it into categories such as bills, personal correspondence, junk mail, and important documents. This step helps streamline the process and makes it easier to prioritize tasks.

Only Handle it Once (OHIO)
Adopt the habit of dealing with each piece of mail only once. Open bills immediately and discard envelopes and unnecessary inserts. If possible, opt for paperless billing to reduce the amount of physical mail you receive. However, do be careful to LOOK at the bills when you get an email notification of bill being ready online. Too many of my clients do NOT look at the bills, and there can be fraudulent charges that are overlooked. Worse, bill do not get paid because the email is either ignored or buried in and among all the other vast amount of email received each day.

Create a Filing System
Establish a filing system to organize important documents such as tax forms, insurance policies, and medical records. Use labeled folders or a filing cabinet to store these documents in a secure and easily accessible manner.

Set Up a Bill Payment Schedule
Create a bill payment schedule to ensure that you never miss a payment deadline. You can use a physical planner, a digital calendar, or bill management apps to keep track of due dates and payment amounts.

Consolidate and Opt-Out
Take proactive steps to reduce the amount of unwanted mail you receive. Opt-out of unsolicited catalogs and advertisements. Consider consolidating accounts to receive fewer statements and bills. Click on the “unsubscribed” button on unwanted email.

Go Digital
Embrace digital solutions for managing bills and documents whenever possible. Many banks offer online bill pay services, and apps like Evernote or Dropbox can help you digitize and organize important documents. Again, you must make sure you are totally on top of this, or bills will get lost and not paid.

Shred and Dispose Securely
Dispose of sensitive documents securely by shredding them before discarding. This helps protect your personal information and reduces the risk of identity theft.

Stay Consistent
Make a habit of sorting through your mail regularly to prevent buildup and maintain an organized system. Set aside a specific time each day or week to tackle incoming mail and bills.

Review and Adjust
Periodically review your mail management system to identify areas for improvement. Adjust your strategies as needed to optimize efficiency and reduce clutter.

If you need help, just ask a Professional Organizer like me to come set up or help you fine tune your system.

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Helping People With Hoarding Disorder Through Virtual Reality

Helping People With Hoarding Disorder Through Virtual Reality

Not all professional organizers work with people who hoard because hoarding is a behavioral disorder, and we are not mental health professionals. Professional organizers need to be trained to understand this disorder, or they may do more harm than help. Working collaboratively with a mental health professional and the client is the best way to work with hoarding disorder.

For clarification, hoarding is not collecting, and it is not holding on to cherished keepsakes. Here’s a great description of hoarding.

If you have a loved one who has a hoarding disorder, there is a promising new treatment. Scientists are experimenting with virtual reality to let hoarders practice decluttering their environment.

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Eco-Conscious Decluttering and Storage

Eco-Conscious Decluttering and Storage

Last month we blogged about eco-friendly cleaning. Now let’s look at eco-friendly organization. The goal here is to reduce clutter and waste while promoting a more sustainable lifestyle.

Declutter Responsibly

Avoid simply throwing unwanted items in the trash. Instead, donate gently used items to charity or sell them online. For items that can’t be reused, look for recycling programs in your area.

“Free cycle” gently used items

Search for Freed Up, Buy Nothing, and Freecycle for starters. There are also many Facebook groups dedicated to facilitating the passing on of unwanted items.

Upcycle and Repurpose

Get creative with repurposing items to give them new life. Old jars can be used to store spices or organize small items, while worn-out clothing can be turned into cleaning rags or DIY craft projects.

Invest in Sustainable Storage Solutions

Choose storage containers made from eco-friendly materials such as bamboo, glass, or metal. These materials are more durable than plastic and can be recycled or composted at the end of their lifespan.

Go Digital

Minimize paper clutter by opting for digital storage solutions whenever possible. Scan important documents and receipts, and store them electronically to reduce the need for physical filing systems.

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Green Cleaning and Organization: How to Tidy Up Your Home While Being Eco-Friendly

Green Cleaning and Organization: How to Tidy Up Your Home While Being Eco-Friendly

In this age of increasing environmental consciousness, many of us are striving to reduce our carbon footprint and to live more sustainably. One area where this mindset can be applied is in the way we clean and organize our homes. From choosing environmentally friendly cleaning products to implementing eco-conscious organization methods, there are plenty of ways to tidy up while being kind to the planet.

Traditional cleaning products often contain harsh chemicals that can be harmful to both our health and the environment. These chemicals can contribute to indoor air pollution and have negative effects on aquatic ecosystems when they are washed down the drain. By opting for green cleaning products, you can reduce your exposure to toxins and minimize your impact on the planet.

Choosing Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

When shopping for cleaning products, look for ones that are certified as environmentally friendly. These products are typically made from natural, biodegradable ingredients that are safer for both your family and the planet. Ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice can be used to create effective homemade cleaning solutions that are gentle on both the environment and your wallet.

Sustainable Cleaning Tools

In addition to using green cleaning products, consider investing in sustainable cleaning tools. Opt for reusable microfiber cloths instead of disposable wipes, and choose brushes and scrubbers made from bamboo or other renewable materials. These items are not only better for the environment but often more durable and effective than their conventional counterparts.

By adopting green cleaning and organization practices, you can create a cleaner, healthier home while reducing your environmental impact. So why not start today? Your home and the planet will thank you for it.

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Eleven Creative Uses For Device Trackers Like AirTags

Eleven Creative Uses For Device Trackers Like AirTags

I know someone who lost her keys so often when in college that if any keys were turned in, campus security called her first. If only AirTags existed, then! AirTags and other device trackers offer a convenient solution for people like her who frequently misplace their belongings. Here are several ways to use device trackers.

For iPhone users, AirTags are the go-to device because you can use the Find My app to locate the lost item and produce a sound you can hear if you are nearby.

There are other device trackers out there for Android users. Some require subscriptions; others have limited range. The best devices broadcast to other users of iPhones or Android, as appropriate, so you have an ecosystem of people alerted to your missing item, pet, or person.

Here are some AirTag alternatives:


Below are several ways to use device trackers:

  1. Keys and Wallets

Attach a device tracker to your keys or wallet to easily locate them when misplaced.

  1. Backpacks and Bags

Secure a device tracker to your backpack, purse, or bag to track its location. This can be particularly helpful when traveling or in crowded places where bags can easily be misplaced or stolen. I placed an AirTag in my purse while I was traveling in Rome last summer, just in case. Thankfully I never had to use it!

  1. Luggage

Attach a device tracker to your luggage when traveling to help you keep track of it throughout your journey, which would be especially useful if your luggage gets lost or misplaced. This also is very helpful to me whenever I travel. I put an AirTag in my checked luggage and my carryon. This way I know that my luggage indeed did make it on my flight and that it landed with me.

  1. Pet Collars

For pet owners, attaching a device tracker or similar device to your pet’s collar can provide peace of mind in case your fur baby wanders off or gets lost.

  1. Remote Controls

Attach a device tracker to your TV remote or other frequently misplaced remote controls. Just imagine how many fewer quarrels will erupt nightly!

  1. Bicycles and Scooters

Secure a device tracker to your bicycle or scooter to deter theft and to track its location if it goes missing. This can be particularly useful for urban commuters who rely on bicycles or scooters for transportation.

  1. Children’s Belongings

Attach device trackers to your children’s belongings, such as backpacks, jackets, or toys, to keep track of them in crowded places or when they are playing outside. This can provide added peace of mind for parents and caregivers.

  1. Your Child or Elderly Parent

Attach a device tracker to a pocket or the inside of your children’s jackets so you can locate them if they wander off or worse. Or, if you have an elderly parent living with you who tends to wander off, a device tracker could be a lifesaver.

  1. Important Documents

Place a device tracker on important documents, such as passports, IDs, or important paperwork so you can quickly locate, especially in emergency situations.

  1. Car Keys

Attach a device tracker to your car keys to easily locate them when misplaced, a blessing when you’re in a hurry to leave the house.

  1. Custom Use Cases

Get creative! Whether it is attaching them to musical instruments, sports equipment, or anything else you frequently misplace, the possibilities are endless.

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Nine Strategies for Organizing and Decluttering Old Photos

Nine Strategies for Organizing and Decluttering Old Photos

Organizing and decluttering old photos can be a sentimental journey, but it is also a task that can quickly become overwhelming without a plan. Here are some strategies to help you efficiently organize and declutter your collection of old photos:

  1. Start Small

Begin by tackling one specific area or category of photos at a time. For example, you could start with a particular album, a box of loose photos, or a specific time in your life. Breaking the task into smaller, more manageable chunks can make it feel less daunting.

  1. Sort by Categories

Sort your photos into categories such as family, vacations, special occasions, and friends. This will help you organize them more effectively and make it easier to locate specific photos when you want to reminisce.

  1. Create a System

Once you have sorted your photos into categories, decide on a system for organizing them. You could organize them chronologically, by event, by location, or by person. Choose a system that makes sense to you and will be easy to maintain in the long run.

  1. Digitize

Consider digitizing your photos to save space and preserve them for future generations. Many scanning services are available, or you can do it yourself with a scanner or smartphone app. Once digitized, you can easily organize and share your photos online.

  1. Weed Out Duplicates and Low-Quality Photos

As you go through your photos, be ruthless about getting rid of duplicates, blurry photos, and ones that no longer hold any significance to you. Keep only the best-quality photos that truly capture important memories.

  1. Label and Date

Take the time to label your photos with names, dates, and locations if possible. This will help preserve the context of the photos and make it easier not only for you to remember the where, when, and why of your precious memories but also for future generations to understand their significance to you and the family.

  1. Store Properly

Invest in archival-quality storage materials such as acid-free photo albums, sleeves, and boxes to protect your photos from damage over time. Keep them stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to prevent fading. If they are downstairs, shelve them high to avoid possible water damage should the water heater or washer leak and cause flooding.

  1. Share and Enjoy

Once your photos are organized and decluttered, enjoy the fruits of all your labors by taking the time to share them with your loved ones. Create digital albums, scrapbooks, or slideshows to share your memories and stories with family and friends.

  1. Make it a Regular Habit

To prevent your photo collection from becoming cluttered again in the future, make it a habit to regularly review and declutter your photos. Set aside time once or twice a year to go through your collection and remove any photos that are no longer meaningful to you.

Organizing and decluttering old photos can be a rewarding process that allows you to preserve and cherish your memories for years to come. By following these strategies, you can efficiently sort through your collection, decluttering while preserving the most meaningful photos and organizing them in a way that makes them easy to enjoy and share with others.

Photo: Pixabay

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Eat That Frog! You Will Not Croak

Eat That Frog! You Will Not Croak

Have you heard of “eat the frog” as a strategy for accomplishing your daily goals? Think about it. How gross would it be to eat a frog for breakfast? Think again. If you DID eat that frog, or finish you most loathsome job first, wouldn’t your remaining chores seem easier, if not downright pleasurable?

The takeaway message here is: do that task you most dread first; get it out of the way, and you will be well on the path to improved productivity. Is that all? Well, there is a bit more to it, and it’s beautifully summarized in this article:



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Eleven Strategies for Backing Up Your Home Computer (That Would Make an IT Pro Proud)

Eleven Strategies for Backing Up Your Home Computer (That Would Make an IT Pro Proud)

Backing up your home computer is crucial for protecting your data from loss due to hardware failures, malware, accidental deletion, or theft. Here are some good strategies for backing up your home computer:

  1. Regular Backups: Set up a regular schedule for backups. Whether it is daily, weekly, or monthly, consistency is key.
  2. Multiple Copies: Maintain multiple copies of your backups. Keep backups both onsite and offsite to protect against different types of disasters.
  3. External Hard Drives: External hard drives are affordable and easy to use for backups. You can manually copy your important files to them or use backup software for automatic backups.
  4. Cloud Storage: Utilize cloud storage services like Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive. They offer convenient access to your files from anywhere with an Internet connection and provide redundancy in case of hardware failure.
  5. Backup Software: Invest in backup software that automates the process, making it easier and less prone to human error. Many backup solutions offer features like incremental backups, versioning, and scheduling.
  6. Disk Imaging: Consider periodically creating disk images of your entire system. Disk imaging captures everything on your hard drive, including the operating system and settings, allowing for a full system restore in case of a catastrophic failure.
  7. Versioning: Choose backup solutions that support versioning, which keeps multiple versions of your files. This allows you to restore previous versions if you accidentally overwrite or delete important data.
  8. Test Restores: Regularly test your backups by restoring files or entire systems from them. This ensures that your backups are working correctly and that you can recover your data when needed.
  9. Backup Encryption: If your backups contain sensitive information, ensure that they are encrypted to protect against unauthorized access.
  10. Backup Health Monitoring: Keep an eye on the health of your backup system. Regularly check for any errors or warnings and address them promptly.
  11. 1Backup Plan Documentation: Document your backup strategy, including what data is being backed up, how often, and where the backups are stored. This documentation will be valuable in case you need to recover your data in the future.

By following these strategies, you can ensure that your home computer data is adequately backed up and protected against loss. Impressing the IT pro in your life is a bonus!

The bottom line is that hard drives do die. I just spent a few hours confirming this when I went to use my Dad’s computer and just heard clicking noises. Thank God we did back up his computer! Please ensure you do the same with yours to avoid any stress or inconvenience.

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