Still wrestling with time management?

I Googled “Time Management” and got over 1 billion hits in less than 26 seconds so, don’t worry you’re not alone!

The problem isn’t that you have a challenge but rather that you can’t talk about it at work (for many obvious reasons) or with your family or loved one’s because they probably seem used to your behavior or make jokes about it and I would guess that you probably feel like no one really understands you.

I bet you’re not even sure what the root cause is behind your own time challenges. If you could define the root cause and actually implement some strategic actions, that suit your lifestyle and your personality style, you’d be much happier, more productive and you’d even pat yourself on the back some days for a job well done.

But sadly, many people don’t realize that there are people to help with time challenges – at kAos Group we do this along with other professionals that can be found in the Google search. But, until you are ready to give someone a call here are some great time management links that may provide affirmations or strategies for you to adopt:

Time management doesn’t work

Take Control of your time

Time strategies for moms

Best practices in time management

10 Strategies for better time management (i love this one!!)

Free time management resource materials

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Time Savers and Increased Productivity

Sharpen the Tool

Getting a grip on our sometimes challenging relationship with time can seem like a daunting task. You get a system set up and then suddenly a wrench is thrown into the wheel. We all know what that’s like!

Try these steps for creating a healthy relationship with ‘time’.

Accept that some days you will ‘fly by the seat of your pants’

Be confident that the efforts you put into scheduling everything into your ‘calendar’ and ‘tasks’ will pay off

Know that sometimes you lose momentum and your systems should support you

Pick what works for you – set it up and continue to refine it

Don’t believe people who say they don’t need a calendar to remember appointments – if they don’t, they aren’t that busy!

You don’t need to buy software – use what came with your computer.

Schedule everything in your Calendar or Tasks

You don’t have to do it alone!

kAos Group is experienced in customized systems for maximum productivity. Feel free to call us at 416.347.9002.

Clear up your Credit Card Clutter

We’re coming up quickly on the holiday season – a wonderful time for spending time with friends and family and we all know that a little gift giving is often included.

I know those little receipts from the stores and those silly bills the credit card companies send us each month can get a little overwhelming but there is no better time than now to take back control of your credit card situation.

Click here to read the interview of my peers and I posted by Credit Cards of Canada or get started with some of these steps below:

1) Group all credit card receipts (by card) into shoe boxes, envelopes or other and label clearly

2) Group all credit card statements (by card) into clearly labelled hang files

3) Continue to put all receipts into their new home (every day, week or month) – this means no more receipts strewn all over the place

4) Open your statements and review your charges monthly (you’re looking for mistaken charges on your card – yes, this happens)

5) Continue to keep your receipts and statements grouped by card and start a new box/envelope at the beginning of 2013 – this will give you a head start on your taxes – seriously!

If you have questions or need help feel free to reach out to us at kAos Group

Downsizing and Dementia – Part Three of Three

If you haven’t read my previous posts – my mother has Alzheimer’s – she is non verbal and confined to a wheelchair. This has happened over the past 11 years….. here is the story of my visit with her the other day……

I visited my mother the other day. When I arrived she was in bed but still awake. She looked at me with far away eyes – today I felt like a complete stranger so I gently kissed her forehead and her expression changed, it softened and soon she was asleep.

I had just driven 1.5 hours to see  her and wasn’t leaving it didn’t matter if she was asleep or not. So I sat in her wheel chair (where she spends her days now) and I wondered how I could be of use. That’s when it dawned on me to tidy up her dresser ….which led to the closet.

I opened the first drawer and wondered to myself how I could have let her drawers get so unruly – I am a professional organizer after all!

Like I say in the public talks and private training sessions “life happens and that affects our ability to maintain organization – it just so happens that when I normally visit her we try to have an activity – like sitting in the big room with the grandchildren and watching the birds but today was different, it was just me and she was already asleep.

It took about 1 hour to empty, wiped clean, sorted and put everything back into the dresser. The next hour was the closet and although there aren’t many clothes the more organized they are the easier it is for her caregivers to dress her. And lastly I was able to clean and tidy her dresser top and side table.

During my cleaning and organizing the nursing staff all dropped in to see what I was doing…it’s not every day that family comes to clean and tidy… and that’s when it dawned on me. We all need care givers and if you are caring for your parents, who is caring for you? Who is doing for you the tasks that you don’t have time to do? We have a gal who visits our mother when we’re not there but she has a job and it’s not cleaning and organizing her dresser and closet.

At kAos Group we are very proud to say that we provide this type of service to our clients whose family members live in homes or care facilities but I never thought for one second that I needed this for my mother.

Talk about a light bulb moment!

Do you have a family member living in a seniors residence or a full care facility?
Could you use some help with
– organizing their living space,
– changing their seasonal clothes and
– providing a general overall cleaning

Give us a call at 416.347.9002 or email us at info@kaosgroup.com

Reach Your Health and Fitness Goals

We are so pleased to share with our community more information about eMbody Fitness, an empowering club here in Toronto. They will help you organize a plan that is perfectly customized for you and support you each step of the way.

This exceptional personal fitness experience embodies everything you want most in an exclusive, luxurious, private fitness venue.

To arrange your personal tour today call Johanna at 416 481 3000
Located at 490 Eglinton Avenue West 2 blocks west of Avenue Road

Special offer: join now and receive $75 off your membership fee.

Tips to Fight Email Overload

About.com has advise on just about everything which can get overwhelming if your searching their site for good articles. I have found a few writers whose articles I really enjoy, Alyssa Gregory is one of them. In this article she provides us with some tips on How to Fight Email Overload

If you like one or more of her ideas simply create systematic way you will start to implement and continue to follow through to success.

Clearing closets helps shed pounds?

Does clearing out space create room for new ……or help you shed pounds?
In a recent impromptu conversation on Facebook with David Cohen he openly shared with me that after clearing out his closets he weighed in 4 kilos lighter at Weight Watchers that week. Is there a connection, you ask? David says “I believe that there is a connection to ridding yourself of the old so the new can come in” He was tackling the kitchen when we started messaging back and forth so I asked him if he’d be willing to share how it ‘feels’ when he was finished.

A kitchen can generally take hours of focused work to complete – there are the cupboards, the fridge, stove and all that cleaning with sudsy soap and water to take care of. I was so excited when he got back to me and here is what he said…..

”Ok the kitchen is complete, threw out 5 bags of recycling, 4 bags of green bin…cleaned out, cleared up, made space…cleaned ovens, stove tops, cupboards, laid down new vinyl in the cupboards, put in new tin foily things in the elements (Stove top)…dusted, vacuumed, washed floors…cleaned the fridge and freezer too…what a feeling, I am exhausted but happy! There you go you wanted to know how it felt and that’s my answer…I have two more tasks to do and my deep clean spring clean is done! Oh and to me it’s about letting go of the past to make room for the new…are you finding your clients are doing this as well Deanne? Let me know…take good care, thanks for being a sounding board!”

Thanks so much for sharing your process David – I can just imagine how exhausted you were but I guarantee that the days ahead (in your kitchen) are going to make you feel like you are on cloud nine. You’ll want to maintain the little things like touching up the stove, wiping out the fridge periodically, etc just to maintain all the work you put in.

In answer to your question about the kAos Group clients letting go of the past to make room for the new – yes, they do want to let go of the past (or at the very least archive it) because that is an essential part of the organizing process. But when it comes to letting go of stuff (not particularly food items :)) you can’t always ‘let go’ until you know what you have. We prompt our clients to group like items together first and then you can comfortably and confidently rid yourself of the extra. In regards to making room for the new – let’s use an office as an example – the papers can’t all be shredded (remember we need to keep documents for tax purposes) so we create filing systems that can be easily archived so that the day to day filing system is roomy, easy to access and has lots of open space in the “new clients” section as well as “receivables”.

My final thoughts:
1. Pick one place and work on it till it’s done – you’re better off over estimating the time you think it’ll take
2. Have the supplies you need (if it’s the kitchen get the little foily things)
3. Celebrate your achievement – write, blog, note it on the calendar – something to honor the work you’ve done
4. Do maintenance spot checks on the areas you’ve completed – 15 minute focus times can maintain your efforts
5. Make room in your life for new things by dealing with the old stuff

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