The battery recycling process…cool video

I like knowing what happens once things are donated or recycled and this is a great video on the battery recycling process.

Call2Recycle® is the only free used battery and cellphone collection program in North America. Since 1996, Call2Recycle has diverted 35 million kilograms of used batteries from the solid waste stream and established a network of 30,000 public collection sites. – See more at: http://www.call2recycle.ca/who-is-call2recycle/#sthash.yI3mnLBL.dpuf

 

 

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Improve your email efficiency

Have you ever felt like you just spent 8 hours on email?

What a painful way to feel about your day – unless you’re absolutely elated that you just cleared ten thousand emails from your inbox.  One of the biggest challenges with emails is that they sometimes contain links. You click on a link and voilà, you’re on the Internet and before you know it you’re scrolling through LinkedIn profiles and you’ve completely lost track of time.

There are ways to actually win at email but you’ll only be able to benchmark your success if you track how much time you truly spend on email in the first place. After you have tracked your time for 2-3 days then consider adopting any of the strategies below.

Here are 10 steps to help improve your overall efficiency with email:

  1. Define how much time you will allocate to email each day and schedule those blocks of time into your calendar.
  2. Only open your email during those blocks of time.
  3. Identify which emails are tasks that will take more than two minutes to execute and add them to your task list.
  4. Identify which emails are appointments-enter them into your calendar and then file or delete the email.
  5. Identify which emails are projects and schedule the next steps or assign the tasks
  6. Save emails that you need to in appropriate folders – remember your inbox is NOT a folder
  7. Delete emails that you no longer need, especially if there is a thread of the same email conversation
  8. Challenge yourself by setting a timer to keep you focused, even challenged, to stay on track (use a PDA, an egg timer or an online tool like www.online-stopwatch.com).
  9. If you continue to struggle with the time you spend in your inbox consider using http://emailga.me to help you, and even motivate you, to stay on track.
  10. If you get stuck figuring out what to do with your email go back to the rule of thumb:
    • if it’s an appointment put it in your calendar
    • if it’s a task put it on your To-Do list
    • if it’s information you need to keep put it in a folder and
    • if it’s someone’s contact information you need enter it into your database.

 

Organize Your Magazines

Do you find yourself keeping great magazines only to later wonder, which one has the article about organizing or renovating your bathroom? What about that great recipe or the tip on how to get that stain out? Here are a few ways to organize the articles, once and for all, that otherwise elude you when you need them most.

1. In your filing cabinet create a hanging folder called “Renovations” or “House Ideas”. Rip out the articles and drop into the folder.

2. Want to keep the whole magazine? Dedicate a group of magazine boxes to your cause. You can label the boxes to suit your style. “Renovating”, “Organizing”, “Gardening”, “Recipes” – you get the idea. Note: Be sure to mark the pages as you are flipping through the magazine. You can use the cool highlighter pen by Post It that has page tabs built-in, you can use the *3M Post-it Durable Index Tabs, or just good ‘ole mini sticky notes – the choice is yours but do remember to keep your supplies handy.

3. If your areas of interest are vast then you could consider a three-ring binder with sections of interest – allow me to divulge some of the category titles of my personal binder:

Storage & Organizing Solutions
Bathrooms
Decorating ideas – Valentines, holidays, center pieces
Stain Removal
Gardening

Good luck!

Time Tips – You can be effective in spite of ADHD characteristics

I recently had the pleasure (and let me be honest – the honor) of being on a panel with Harold Taylor – Canada’s Time Management expert.

Here is a great post by him – scroll down to see how you can subscribe to his newsletters.

You can be effective in spite of ADHD characteristics
By Harold Taylor

In past issues I have outlined the increase in ADHD symptoms among both children and adults, the role technology plays in this increase, how to avoid outsourcing your life to your electronic devices, and some basic suggestions for managing time when you exhibit ADHD-like symptoms. In this issue I offer some further “quick tips” to help you cope.

1. Organize your working area so that everything you use on a regular basis is visible and within reach.

2. Develop routines for repetitive tasks such as checking email, paying bills and writing articles or blogs.

3. Acquire a planning mindset by closing each day with a list of “To Do”s for the following day.

4. Use a planner and use it to excess, blocking off time for projects, recording future “due dates”, follow-ups, appointments, special events, family birthdays and even recording places you visit and people you meet.

5. Assist your working memory by using techniques such as acronyms, visualization, association, and other mnemonic devices described in most books on memory training.

6. Practice stress-relieving activities, since in addition to the usual benefits, reduced anxiety will free up more working memory. (See Boosting Executive Skills in the Classroom by Joyce Cooper-Kahn & Margaret Foster, 2003)

7. Work in short periods of time – breaking longer tasks into “chunks.” Use a timer if necessary.

8. Make up checklists for activities such as travel, shopping, meetings and even for starting the day.

9. Curb lateness by entering the time you must leave your office or home in order to arrive on time. Always allow extra time in the event of heavy traffic.

10. Exercise strengthens executive skills, and research on attention shows that viewing or walking in nature for as little as 20 minutes per week provides the right amount of cognitive input.

In the next issue I will offer some further suggestions relating to physical and mental exercise, mindset and diet.

Please recommend our newsletter to your friends. They can sign up for it here.

Visit us at www.kaosgroup.com

Networking: Staying in Touch and Staying Organized

I had such an enjoyable meeting with Tammy Elliott last week and amongst the topics we covered she was kind enough to share her insights and tips on how she keeps track and builds her authentic network of connections.

She’s got some excellent tips and knows what she’s talking about – she hosts a monthly event for 60+ people )

Take a look at her video here – once you click you can get to know more about her.

Staying organized – YouTube.

If you shy away from Linked In because you’re not sure how to use it – do check out her Linked In profile where she has information about the courses she helps make social media easy.

Quick Tip for Organizing Paper

When Organizing Paper – group all like items together and file separately.

Sounds funny but think of it this way. You’ll group all your bills that need to be paid together until they’re paid – once paid you can file them in their appropriate folders. Some may go into a “tax related” folder or a “utilities” folder.  

 

Quite a few years back I created a paper flow methodology (yes, I geek out over stuff like this) to help people get a handle on the insane amount of paper that flows into our lives.  

Here’s a link to the kAos Group Core Four System™ – A Paper Flow Methodology That Works – https://kaosgroup.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/get-organized-and-keep-your-paper-flow-flowing/   

What’s Even Better than Recycling?

Recycling paper is a great way to support the environment – shred it, dump it in your recycling bin, or compost it – there are many options to get paper out of your home in an eco-friendly manner. But the best way of all to make an impact when it comes to paper is to not create paper products at all! When it comes to your office policies, why not take a lead on implementing some “no printing” guidelines that you and your associates can follow:

• Do not print emails. This should be a basic rule that everyone can easily handle – if you need to save information from an email, set up a folder in your email inbox for this purpose. Depending on your email provider, there should be many options available for saving and categorizing email messages so that you can retrieve them when needed.

• Arrange for an electronic “document signing” service – There are many options available now to send documents electronically for signature. This is an acceptable practice for real estate agents using leases and property transactions plus it’s being used for many legal contracts. Create the document directly from your computer – no need to print it, just send it to the recipient and once signed by all parties, save it on your computer. There should be no need to keep a printed copy when you have it stored electronically. One of the most popular services for this is http://www.docusign.com.

• Have an effective “cloud” back-up service in place for your electronically stored documents. One of the fears of giving up paper is that your computer may crash and your saved documents will be lost. But with an online daily web based back-up system in place, this fear can be alleviated. One reliable service to check out is http://www.carbonite.com.

By not generating as much paper in the first place, you won’t even need to worry about the best method of recycling it!