A recent article that Elaine wrote for the KV STYLE magazine , you can also read it online here
This week I was inspired to write about Time. A friend and I were chatting and she wondered why she had such difficulty getting to places on time and managing her time in general. She wondered if there was a trick to the whole time thing.
Here is a true story of my evolving relationship with TIME and the tricks I have used successfully along the way.
I was not always so great with “TIME”.
There were five clocks as wedding gifts for the skipper and I. Obviously other people also recognized that our relationship with time was out of sync. Ok it was extremely out of sync…so much so that people called us the Tardy Twins; we were perpetually late for everything.
People were telling us something, without coming right out and telling us. I am sure the message was this…we were late too often, it was rude and could we please respect them enough to not waste their time.
It was an eye opener and it got my attention.
I started analyzing why I was late and here are some of the reason that stuck out for me that may also resonate with you.
- Misjudging the amount of time it took to get somewhere, causing me to be late.
- Underestimating the time frame to complete something and therefore things I had committed to were late. Mostly work obligations.
- Stopping to finish that one last thing before I would leave the house, ultimately causing tardiness.
In my research on time I found two Greek words used for “time.” One word is chronos; the other is kairos. Chronos has to do with calendars, seasons, dates, clocks, chronometers. It is chronological or sequential time. Kairos has to do with the fullness of time, when circumstances are right for something to take place.
Chronos being the external relationship with time and Kairos being the internal time clock.
On my TIME journey, one of the strategies I used to help me was an exercise to figure out how long it took to accomplish tasks and to get to specific places. I realized that it took 20 minutes to get to town and get parked so instead of leaving 10 minutes before I needed to be there I started leaving 20 minutes before. Another situation where I have used this time trick is for housework. I know it takes 30 minutes to clean each level of my home. I know have 30 minutes time slots in my weekly schedule that easily accommodate the cleaning chore.
There are no magic tricks…time is time.
It really is about awareness…your awareness of how you relate to your time.
I have come to rely on my internal time clock and have not worn a watch for over 5 years. I arrive at appointments on time…most of the time and feel like I have a better relationship with time and how I can use my 168 hours every week to the fullest.
Today while driving the kids to school I saw the funniest license plate…it said, “IAMLATE” those 7 letters said it all.
All the time manipulating and scheduling aside …sometimes people are just going to be late.
The rule of thumb for any organizing project is the keep like items with like.
Take a look at your space and decide what you need in each area to accomplish the tasks that happen in that area.
For example, where is your coffee maker? If there is a cupboard nearby, then store your mugs, coffee, filters and sugar in this cupboard. By placing all these items together, it eliminates the running around from one spot to the next to gather all the items used for this one activity, namely making coffee. (Tell me this won’t make mornings a little easier!)
Now that you know how the train of thought goes for this process, repeat it for each activity – baking, cooking, cleaning, setting the table, eating (imagine storing your cereal bowls in the same cupboard as the cereal!). When you are planning your space, think in terms of main areas - the stove area, dishes, food prep, lunch items, storage and even paper flow. Where does the paper stuff flow in from and where does it land? By creating a visually appealing space for it to land in will reduce the likelihood that it will spread throughout your whole kitchen.
If there are many people who will be using this space, labels make a great addition to help everyone maintain the new systems and keep everything in its place. Labels also help to identify what items are missing or you’re running low on, making it easier to make your weekly grocery list.
Having a home for everything makes things easier to maintain and clean.
Taking a look at all the items that you want, need or would love to keep (from our last post…about sorting and purging) You may ask yourself…okay now what do I do with it?
The next step is evaluate how often you use this stuff.
The question here is do you use it ALWAYS, SOMETIMES or RARELY.
The ALWAYS stuff needs to be close at hand, either on the countertop or in the easy to get at cupboards and drawers.
The SOMETIMES used stuff can be put a little higher on the shelves, in harder to reach areas but still conveneint.
The RARELY used items can find a place out of the way, in cupboards above the fridge or even in closets away from the kitchen.
These RARELY used items often take up an enormous amount of space in our kitchens, as they are often the big items like the roaster you use once a year to cook turkey in or the deep fryer that gets used only occasionally. As these are items that you will go looking for only when you need them, they can be stored in another area of the house – perhaps a basement cold room or a not often used closet that can be converted with the addition of shelving into a great pantry area.
As always we welcome comments and idea you may have to share with us and our readers…we can always learn new ways of doing things.
Are you ready to reduce the clutter in your kitchen?
Sorting and purging is an important step in getting control and decluttering a kitchen. This can be done as one big full day project or you can take your time and work drawer by drawer. The idea is to take out everything in your kitchen and decide if it is useful for the function of this space.
The ‘keep’ pile will have stuff you NEED, USE or LOVE. If it is broken, you have no need for it, if you don’t use it and it does not make you feel great when you see it and use it (that would be love) then it should go.
I know there will be things that are hard to part with that someone gave you, you bought on your honeymoon or it was your grandmothers. If you are holding onto things that do not make you feel good or are not being used ask yourself if you are honoring these memories if it sits in the back of your cupboard neglected and unused. Or do you think it would go to better use by giving it to someone who would use it. There are plenty of women’s shelters, and less fortunate people who would love to have this stuff.
Spread the wealth and let go of these items.
Are you are looking for some ideas on how to get your kitchen in order, We encourage you to first think about what you want..what is the dream for your kitchen? knowing what you want will help you create the plan to get you there..it is like a map so you know your final destination even if you have not totally figured out your route yet.
Take a look around your kitchen and define what IS working now and what is NOT working. What are the activities that take place in your kitchen, do you like to bake or is your idea of cooking quick and easy recipes, do you often or rarely have company, how many people cook in the kitchen at one time, does the mail or other paper end up on the counters here?
Think about how you USE your kitchen, organizing is not about doing things one way (or what others may think is the right way), it is about making YOUR space work for YOUR family and it is as individual as your family.
So think about not only what does your dream kitchen look like, but how does it function, create the movie in your mind of what an organized kitchen looks, feels and acts like…then take the steps to create that dream.
In previous months we talked about the mudroom/laundry room being the hardest working room in the home.
This month we are moving to the Heart of the Home…the KITCHEN.
By organizing this one room you can:
- Improve your HEALTH by focusing on meal planning based on a healthy food approach.
- Save TIME by having the food available when you want to cook. The prep time will be shorter so you have more time for other activities.
- You can put MONEY back in your bank account when last minute stops at the local fast food joint or grocery store stops are a thing of the past.
- The STRESS around meals and meal planning will be significantly reduced with the control you have in this high traffic area of the home.
What next you ask, it all has to start somewhere and if you need help getting started there are several options.
- Hire a professional. There are associations of professional organizers on every continent, google Professional Organizing/Organising Associations and find a professional in your area.
- Read a book. Just cruise the local bookstore and you will be amazed at the amount of resources to help you get started.
- Watch a home organizing show, there are many online as well as short informative videos on youtube.
- Use the power of facebook and get current information and instant answers for your organizing questions. Connect with us on our page at https://www.facebook.com/organizingconnection we want to help you with your organizing issues.
Spring is Sprung , the grass is ris
I wonder where my taxes is?
Oh maybe they’re on the kitchen Isle?
ops I just knocked over that pile…
But I am a big girl with lots of style
I can tackle this paper awhile
Imagine…a beautifully organized paper file!
Spring is the perfect time to tackle all those piles of paper and create an easy to use filing system to keep them contained. let us know if we can help!
Happy Spring everyone!
As I was musing over this weeks post I thought…What can I say that hasn’t already been mentioned?
The title says it all…..
You can find things easier in an organized HOME…Period.
Now if you want the long winded version here it is.
I don’t live alone, I live with four other people. If I am the keeper of the information then my family would be coming to me all the time to find out where things are.
Having to respond to hundreds(slight exaggeration) of requests daily for missing or misplaced items, everyday items, food items…etc would be more than exhausting.
By having an organized home, a place for everything and everything in its place, all the people that live in the home can find what they need without having to consult anyone else of the whereabouts. Thereby relieving any one particular person of the responsibility of having to remember where things are stored.
So back to my first statement…
EVERYONE can find things easier in an organized home.
Does your mail pile up on your kitchen counter?
Lots of people set up filing systems in their home office or computer area but is it logical to set up a system away from where the paper is piling up? What are the chances that you will immediately bring the mail there? Slim to none is my experience, so logically it would make sense to set up a location on or near the counter so that when you enter the house with the mail it is EASY to place it where it belongs.
Forming the habit of opening the mail over the garbage as soon as it enters the house works great. This way you can eliminate the junk and bulky envelops right away, leaving only the mail that requires action or filing.
Get yourself a portable file holder
There are some nice looking ones that will be visually pleasing and tame all that mail that is coming in. By having a portable system you can transport it easily when it is time to pay those bills of file things away permanently.
Here are some examples of nice counter top file containers that are available:
||The Home Box by Sinden Home
||Desk Top Files by Resource International
||See Jane Work is an excellent place to find some beautiful organizing products…here are some examples of what is available in portable file containers but check out their website for lots more to choose from. We Love them!http://www.seejanework.com/
Setting up a portable filing system to capture incoming mail can work wonders to keep the piles of paper from scattering around your counter, helping to keep incoming bills from getting misplaced so they can be dealt with on time to reduce the amount of late fees you could get charged.
Creating an organized space where clutter naturally occurs makes it easier to maintain and use.