5 Things My Mom Taught Me About Organizing and Productivity

Depositphotos_25892317_l-2015 thanksmomHappy Mother’s Day to all of you wonderfully inspiring moms!

You remember those sayings, demands, chores, urgings and advisories from mom?! You know those things that it took you almost a lifetime to realize where actually life lessons and values intended to make you the best person ever. I’ve lived a little and thought it would be fun idea for this holiday to reflect on what my mom taught me.  When thinking about specifics to include for this article I texted my mom and asked “what did you try to teach us that connects to this topic”?  Her responses are the first 2 🙂

1. Have a place for stuff and put it there…

Yes this one often received an “uh Mooooom” or blank stare but it is absolutely true. Defining where things belong helps you find them and return them much easier and faster.   This is especially applicable with multi-user spaces.

2. Finish what you start; Keep the commitment you signed up for. If you don’t like it you don’t have to do it again but get through the process.

Okay. I have become much more of a big picture person that in the past but realizing that the planning and follow through required after making a decision were so important to my learning and sense of achievement.

A productivity point that also comes to mind is doing the hard things first. If we can get past the activities that seem so big, we gain a huge boost of confidence.  Then what comes after is much easier to complete.

3. Clean your room.

In organizing this is one of the most common challenges people face- maintaining the order that is established. Did it seem like you heard this every day too?  It’s interesting that this now makes me think about organizing space styles.  My definition of clean was not necessarily the same as hers.  Now we have tools like the Time and Space Style Inventory (link to page) to find out what makes sense for the user of the space.  With that knowledge we can help the systems and the maintenance routine match the person.

And yes I do make my bed every day now.

4. Be happy with what you have.

You couldn’t control what anyone else had- As a kid not even what you had. But you could control how you looked at it. Gratitude  and perspective are much more openly discussed today than they were in the past.  We also practice more consumption and comparison today.  We want the latest and greatest that our friend has without much regard for what we really need. If we can take a step back to a simpler definition of life and happiness, it will have an impact on the volume of unused things we have around us.

5. Come back before the street lights come on.

As a military kid there was a layer of protection around the community that afforded us some freedom of movement. So at times I could stay out later but she always had to know where I was.  The street lights just served as a boundary on my behavior and strategy to plan her time.  She clearly stated the expectation and there were consequences when I overstepped.  This boundary allowed her to continue managing the household without overextending wondering where I was or when I’d be back.  What boundaries do you set for yourself and others? Are you able to balance time for play, self care, and readiness for the upcoming day? Do you instill confidence and trust through your behavior? When a situation arises that is beyond your boundary how do you recover?

These may seem like very simple examples yet in each there is a lesson that I didn’t realize I was getting at the time. As I look at the person I have become and the work that I do,  it’s so easy to identify the organizing and productivity tips mom shared all throughout my life. 

What did you learn from your mom? How is it showing up in your life today? Share with a comment below.

Happy Organizing!

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Organizer + Coach = Greater Results

CoachingI’ve been so excited to share about my coaching services since completing the ICF accredited Coach Approach for Organizers foundations program.

Check out this Quick interview with answers to a few of the questions I’ve received on coaching.  Simply put, combining organizing expertise with coaching skills results in greater results for you!

Are you still a Professional Organizer? Of course I am!  I love helping clients to transition their space into a more functional environment for work and play.  I have learned over the years that sometimes it’s about more than the stuff thus I am adding the coaching skill set to create a richer experience for my clients.  Coaching provides a layer of support for clients who want structure in successfully applying organizing and productivity principles beyond moving the stuff.

Adding coaching brings my services even closer to A Taylored Space motto of ‘Make Room For Your Life’.

How will coaching help my organizing project?  There are many situations that occur during the organizing project in which taking a break from the what to work more on the why can help the project move forward.

  • When you are not quite ready to work in a space but still want to prepare
  • Before an organizing session to realign with goals and desired end results
  • When stuck or overwhelmed during the project
  • When creating a plan for next steps towards the end of an organizing session
  • In between sessions for accountability and encouragement

Given all these openings, coaching can occur during organizing sessions and as a standalone service! 

 Do you coach on other topics?  I am focusing my coaching practice on helping people shift beyond busy to productive.  Over the past 5 years the more complex situations that my client face revealed many areas lacking focus and thereby reducing productivity: space and systems, time and tasks, your connections and your capacity.  I’ve integrated these into a system that addresses internal challenges as well as external giving the client space to increase awareness around their situation and barriers to success, design customized action plans, and receive ongoing personal accountability.

I have coached clients on time management, goal setting and achievement, healthy lifestyle (weight loss and fitness), confidence in decision making, keeping family the priority, job changes, redefining life balance and other topics as they emerge in our time together. 

Isn’t coaching the same as consulting and training?

There are some similarities and there are also some major differences.  See the definitions below for more information on what makes the coaching experience so unique.

A Coach partners with you in a dynamic process as you explore needs, goals, actions and learnings

A Trainer shows you what to do effectively transferring their expertise to increase your knowledge and skills

A Consultant tells you their expert recommendation and advice based on their opinion of your situation

In the Coaching process the Client is the true expert and is held as naturally creative resourceful and whole, capable of unlocking the answers to the questions in their life.  So many times we look to others to give us advice when really if we can rediscover the truth that best represents what we need and  what works for us we can live more productive and authentic lives. 

See this additional document on “What is Coaching”   (do I link to the one-sheet?) yes as a pdf

If you could sum up coaching in 3 words what would they be?

Awareness, Action, Accountability

  • Increases awareness of self, situation, challenges and resources,
  • Clarifies and constructs positive action,
  • Provides caring accountability that is more support when needed and more strength when asked

 How can I learn more about your coaching services?

Congratulations on wanting to learn more about what coaching can do for you!  Here’s the page on my site outlining my approach to coaching.  

You can also schedule a complimentary consultation session with me here  to talk more about your specific situation and how coaching can work for you .  

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Discover Your Style

perfect room magazineEver feel like you are the only one not getting results from following Perfect Room Magazine’s ‘Top 10 Tips for Organizing Everything in 10 Minutes’ article.  The truth is you are not the only one.  Part of the reason for this disconnect is that while the article may contain sound advice, it may not be a good fit to your personal preferences.  So how can YOU get organized and maintain it?  Start by finding your style.

 Coach and Momprenuer Mentor Cena Block developed the TSSI- Time and Space Style Inventory  to help you better understand your unique preferences for using time and managing our space.    The TSSI takes into account how you normally interact with your environment and to-do list to help you assess your personal style.  With this understanding you are set up to reach peak levels of productivity (we call it “FLOW”– a heightened state of focus resulting in efficient action and ultimately fulfilling results) in which you are able to do more and stay organized because you are aligning your strengths and preferences with specific techniques that work. 

Check out this video explaining the TSSI and how it can help you.

 

It takes about 15 minutes to complete the inventory and you are sent a report that gives your styles in a range from dominant, strong to moderate.  You also get access to the TSSI Hub where you can find more details on each style including the steps you can take to make the most of your time and space and  achieve flow. 

In taking the TSSI I discovered that I am a Hopper- Big Picture- Cliff Hanger.  I see across all there is to do then I jump from thing to thing and continue working until the last moment at which I had to call a task done (there’s a bit of the Perfectionist showing up too).  With the insights gained from the TSSI I was able to adjust a couple of my task management routines based on the suggested flow steps in my report.   It has helped to relieve anxiety about the laundry list of projects that I want to get done.  I also can maintain a higher state of focus because I know there is already rest and play time built into my workflow. 

What about you? What do you hope to learn in understanding your style better?

When you’re ready to discover your style go here to access the TSSI.

Happy Organizing!

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