Know what I hate? Clutter. Know what I have a ton of? Clutter. On my desk, in my house, in my brain. Stop the madness!!
The answer to clutter – organization. Jenn at RBC is a master organizer, she is also a great list maker. Not even kidding, when it comes to prioritizing Cindy and I defer to Jenn.
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So why do we let ourselves get overwhelmed with clutter, in our work space, in our home space and even in our brains? Often, we work under the illusion that we are multitasking and getting more done when the reality is that multitasking causes our brains to switch back and forth between tasks causing an increase in stress and an actual lack of productivity.
According to Psychology Today, technology has increased the probability of “multitasking.” Switching back and forth between tasks may not take a great deal of time but the swapping causes a disconnect in the brain making it harder to concentrate going forward. No surprise, Facebook and email were the primary distractions in this study, but now the big question is, how do we make a change?
Be like Jenn: Make a list. Creating a list of priorities can help you outline the tasks at hand and allow you to check important items off your to-do list with minimal effort. From there it becomes a snowball. Once you start to see the effects of creating a list and organizing it, stay on task becomes much easier.
The next thing to do: Turn off your phone – turn off social media – turn off the TV- whatever it is that is causing your biggest distractions, turn it off. Create a workspace that allows you to be comfortable and productive. If you start your day with a messy desk, block off 20 minutes on your calendar to clean and organize it. Once that is complete, check it off your list and continue the day!
We often think about our to-do lists (without writing them down) and get overwhelmed by the thought of getting it all done, and done on time – OMG how will I ever get this done! Cue the crazy-pulling-the-hair-out-mode. No one likes this mode, and somehow at some point, we all end up here. Some more than others, and it’s not a fun place to be. Using time management skills will help reduce the clutter in the brain that increases the clutter in our lives. I am guilty of this, so guilty. The overwhelming feeling tends to happen when there’s work to be done, laundry to be put away, dinner to cook, and the list goes on. I also know that I feel at my best when I am organized and planning ahead, so the key in removing the clutter, at least for me, is making lists, blocking time, and preparing ahead of time.
The secret to decluttering really comes down to organization and time management. It sounds easy enough but from experience it can be harder to piece together yourself than you make think. Sometimes it’s worth the time to work with a coach to help you prioritize your-work life balance and find the best way for you to declutter and regain productivity.