Personal Concierge’s Message
by Debbie Alford
Let’s face it; there is always something that needs doing around the house whether you have a chance to be at home or not. While you are at work, those dust bunnies have a party under the bed and sprinkle dust around the house. Things that have been dumped in the weekday rush need to be sorted and stored. The lawn has become a jungle. I feel a sigh coming on…..
With being busy all week and hanging out for some down time on that far distant weekend – or even a bit of quiet or fun time together – it’s easy to let this domestic work slip.
Cue the arguments about who is more busy/lazy than the other, who does more/less, and which of you has more time to do things than the other.
If you do manage to work out a suitable roster, there will always be complaints about jobs not being done properly and heated debates about the fairness of chore allocation when some tasks are harder/easier than others. Does mowing the grass really trump the weekly shop and the struggle to get it all packed away properly?
You feel like you can’t win, don’t you? And why do you want to spend your time beating yourself up over the domestic duties, anyway?
Remember when you never wanted to leave each other’s arms? Now you’re lucky to stay there for ten minutes before something demands your attention. The cuddles turn to squabbles or silent hours of angry cleaning.
You could keep debating over who has does what, or how to find the time to squeeze it all in, or you could just call me.
I can organise a gardener or a professional organiser for you in less time than it takes for you to cross your arms and glare at your partner. I can arrange for the carpets to be cleaned and your garments to be repaired. I can supervise the work whilst you’re enjoying your day off, or at work knowing you’re going to return to a far more inviting home.
It will be tidy but more importantly, it will be peaceful. There could even be a chance that you might squeeze in a cuddle, too.
You don’t have to hand the domestic duties over all the time but the expression “divide and conquer” has merit. Do what you can, when you can. It is not such an important part of your lives that it should cost you your relationship or your precious free time. You can afford some help. You can’t afford to waste the things that really matter.
How do people do it? You watch your colleagues and friends carry out their lives in a seamless fashion and see that they have every aspect of their worlds under control.
But after a long day at work, the last thing you want to do is have to cook dinner, make arrangements for that dinner party on the weekend, pay the bills, go shopping – or complete whatever else is piling up on your to-do list. Even your relationship with your partner has been inadvertently put on hold. Even if you had time, you wouldn’t have the energy to give what he or she deserves.
Note to self – your friends and colleagues DO NOT have it all under control and are either a) cutting some corners to get it all done, b) pretending that all is okay when in fact it is not or c) have a personal assistant to help them look so “together”.
A busy work life and social life is all well and good but it means that you as an individual struggle to achieve all that you want to or even need. When you are overworked, the stress can affect all aspects of your life, heightening your emotions and even adversely affecting your relationships with those around you.
Organisation and delegation need not be a nasty word. It is surprisingly easy to hand over certain aspects of your life to a trustworthy and reliable individual leaving you free to do the more important things in life – even for those self-confessed control freaks.
A personal concierge can assist in certain aspects of your life allowing you to meet other more timely deadlines such as those in your work life. Your concierge can do the stuff that is bogging you down and essentially give you permission to take time out for yourself and for those around you.
Now when was the last time you managed to find some real quality time for you and your loved ones?
You can’t do it all and you shouldn’t expect to.
Over the next few posts I will give you some tips to make your busy life run more smoothly and show you why you deserve to have a life and enjoy it!
You’re out of the house, away on business and as you check yourself out in the mirror you’re confronted with a run in your tights or a hanging hem, and your button pops off in shock! Of course you don’t have access your fully stocked sewing kit, do you? Typical.
What do you do?
Here are seven simple and quick emergency clothing repairs (and some items to keep handy!)
Remember, these are temporary fixes, and will need a good seeing to once your night, trip or meeting is over, but they will see you through the crucial stages when you need them to!
A common theme among women – and there’s plenty of research to back it up – is that they negotiate like a girl. They’re worried they’ll offend or seem pushy or they are scared they’ll lose their job if they stand their ground.
Women are generally lower paid and have poorer working conditions, and, sadly, some of the fingers are pointing at the fact that women don’t or won’t negotiate “like a man” and, therefore, don’t get what they want.
When men negotiate they focus on the facts and keep their emotions out of it. It’s purely business. We women tend to worry about others and think of their feelings. We become emotionally involved in what should be a simple business transaction.
It is possible to stand your ground, get what you want and still come up smelling of Chanel No. 5.
Before you go into any meeting, know exactly what it is you want to achieve. What do you want, precisely? And what is the absolute minimum you will accept?
This is not necessarily in relation to pay, but also working conditions, responsibilities, environment, status and role …
What’s In It For Them
You know what you want, and what you’ll accept, but a large part of negotiating is what you can offer the other party – i.e. your boss.
Are you worthy of the terms you’re asking for? Are you capable of doing what you say you will do in your new role as department manager or production coordinator …?
Think about what will THEY get out of this new agreement, and show them how they’d be foolish to discount your suggestion.
Know When To Walk Away
All negotiations, even though it may not seem like it, have an area of overlap between what you want and what they want. Finding the common ground is generally easy, but you also need to be open and aware of it. It’s easy to get caught up in what you want and forget what your boss needs – or any other party, for that matter.
Be prepared to agree to terms or walk away. If you’ve asked for the meeting, and you know your limits, you don’t have to take what’s on offer, but you do need to be prepared for nothing to change if you choose not to agree.
If the other party has called the meeting, be prepared to accept less than you want (see the first point about Preparation) or to say “No” and be ok with that.
Stand Your Ground
Mostly, it’s about knowing what you want, and preventing those horrid little voices in your head from having their say, mid-negotiation.
by Debbie Alford
Whether it’s happening at work or in your relationship, and as stressful and horrible as it can feel at the time, some competition is actually a good thing.
A really good thing!
Think about it; you’re cruising along at work, getting everything done in the time frames you’re given, your boss is impressed with you and you’re simply … cruising.
Suddenly, a new girl arrives. She’s not bad, you think. She’s a little more efficient, and not scared to share her ideas on how things could be improved, or to implement a new system.
You were THAT person, but suddenly you have competition. Surely this calls for some crying under the doona and taking the rest of the girls out for a drink and a bitch-session, right?
Perhaps it isn’t as bad as it seems? While you might feel happy just cruising along day to day, content with your workload and ticking off your list, weren’t you really starting to get just a little bored? Perhaps you feel a little complacent?
Competition can force you to ‘step up’, take some initiative or speak up about something that’s been bothering you. It can cause you to move towards the edges, and take a tentative step out of your comfort zone. It may offer you a promotion or movement upwards – or out of – a company.
Even in your relationships, whether romantic and intimate, or with your friends or work colleagues, competition can help you to address the monotony. How dare she become friends with your friends? They were yours first, weren’t they? Who does she think she is, going out with them tonight….. Oh, I said no when they asked, didn’t I? I just couldn’t be bothered going out…
Competition forces you to see things differently. It shows you what is important to you and what isn’t. Competition forces you to take action and make decisions. It shows you how to lift your game in life.
Competition can help shape you into a better person and that can only be a good thing.
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