I’m taking a break to visit family, soak up some mellow Englishness, and hopefully chill out a bit. See you soon!
The little vignette below tells you exactly what’s on my mind today: I’m heading for London next week and am not sure whether I’m more excited about seeing my family, getting stuck into a bacon bap, or filling my suitcase with “essential” English purchases.
Not that I need any help getting in the mood… but here’s a bit of interior fantasizing, featuring my current Stateside obsession, One Kings Lane, with a bit of accessorizing help from British retail dream John Lewis.
If you fancy any of the One Kings Lane goodies, you’d better move fast, as they are selling rapidly and many items are only up for grabs through tomorrow. As for John Lewis, they promise to start shipping internationally very soon, so if you live west of Land’s End, you might want to drop them a line to egg them on a bit.
We organized folks love our to-do lists, don’t we? Egged on by experts like David Allen, we nod in vigorous agreement that tasks are better out of our head and down on paper, where we can review and prioritize them to our heart’s content.
But if you’re anything like me, you can soon find yourself the prisoner of a very, very long list, where everything from wash the sheets to learn Spanish is lurking. Most days, no matter how hard I work or how productive I am, there is always stuff on the list which has not been crossed off. And since this appears to be the natural order of things, I am becoming more interested in figuring out which tasks are more important than others.
In recent weeks, I have come across a couple of really useful concepts which have transformed how I feel about my lists. Could they work for you, too?
Repeaters or Completers?
The first is an expression I heard from Margaret Lukens, a wonderful professional organizer and productivity coach who did tell me who the inventor of this concept was, and I’ve forgotten. Sorry. Nonetheless, I suggest you divide your list into Repeaters and Completers and see if you feel differently about it.
Repeater examples: buy groceries, vacuum, floss teeth, check bank statement, pull weeds, call parents.
Completer examples: set up a file system, book a flight to London, paint the guest bedroom, buy new socks.
Repeaters are things which you can probably skip and they’ll still be there next week. Or, you can do them, and hey presto, they’ll still need to be done next week or next month. Oh joy. Completers, on the other hand, actually move you forward. Once the task is done, it won’t need to be done again (until all your socks are worn out, of course). Read more…
I thought it was high time we heard from a male guest poster and I’m delighted that James Adams is up to the challenge! James is an editor on CartridgeSave, an online specialist supplying HP laser toner cartridges to the UK market, so he knows a thing or two about the corporate office environment. Unlike the post I wrote last year, on jazzing up your workspace, James advocates more of a back-to-basics approach. Since he is based in the UK, I have left intact a couple of British expressions, which I hope Stateside cousins will decipher and enjoy. Over to you, James…
Having a cluttered office is the bane to many people’s working lives, but they constantly keep going on this way just because they don’t have the time to think about effective solutions for remedying this problem. There are a number of simple ways though that can be used in order to turn a workspace into a clean environment, free of all clutter.
Buy An Inbox
People in crowded offices know the drill. They leave their desk for a couple of minutes, only to come back to a mess of papers that has been dumped on them. Not only do these severely limit their space, but they also put a real spanner in the works when it comes to keeping everything organized.
The best way to solve this is through using an inbox, which is simply a plastic tray that can be placed on the desk. This is clearly marked so that all those delivering documents will place them there, leaving the rest of the desk untouched.
Read on for more cubicle de-cluttering tips…