decluttering

31

Oct

2012

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.

 

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13

Jun

2012

Did you know that being disorganised could be affecting your health?  What about your career?

It’s not just about missed appointments, unpaid bills, or forgotten birthdays.  Being disorganised can lead to stress, a feeling of “stuckness” and an inability to finish tasks and commitments.

Do you sometimes find yourself starting multiple tasks, either at home or at work, and never finishing any of them?

Do you know what your priorities are?

When you don’t really know what your goals are, it can be quite hard to know where to put your energy.  You may start off feeling excited about a project or task, but quickly lose interest as you see the next “shiny thing”.  You may feel “scattered”, clueless and confused.

Not having long and short term goals can make your life feel dull and boring, which in turn can lead to depression.

Having a disorganised and cluttered home or office, can stifle your creativity and your ability to take in new information.

There are lots of ways of getting organised and there will be one that works for you.

You can start by decluttering your desk at work, or your kitchen bench at home.  Find all the bills and paperwork that needs dealing with.  Order then in “date due” order and place them neatly in a place where you’ll be sure to see and deal with them.  Perhaps next to your phone or computer would be the best place.

Start using your wall calendar to write in all your important dates and appointments.  You might like to invest in a well-designed diary or personal organiser.

Take advantage of the calendar application on your smart phone to set up reminders for appointments, bills and birthdays.

“To do” lists are a great tool for keeping track of all that you have going on and making sure you don’t forget to pay those bills, or buy birthday presents.  Often writing out a “To do” list can immediately make you feel lighter, as all the stuff floating around your brain is now on paper.

When you start to feel a bit more organised, take some time to plan your next holiday, or a fun get –together with friends.

Then, when life starts flowing a bit more easily, sit down to work out your life goals and priorities.  Organising your life will seem like a breeze when you know exactly what you want to achieve.

(If you think you might need a helping hand with getting organised, give your personal concierge a call)

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27

Sep

2011

This week I thought I’d share this article by Katherine Giovanni with you….

Why should you hire a concierge?  I can think of a hundred reasons actually. Here are just a few …

People around the world are trying to squeeze thirty-six hours into a twenty-four-hour day, and when you do that you don’t do it very well. If you continue to do it on a regular basis, then eventually your body will resent it and you’ll get sick. Concierge are here to give you your health back. They’re here to give you the extra hours that you have been craving and will do what has to be done, so that you can do want to do like spending more time with your children or spending a few extra hours at work.

Companies around the world are also getting into the act. They are not only starting to use concierge, but they are making them a part of their corporate benefit packages. They are reasoning correctly that the less time people spend running personal errands during the workday, the more time they can spend at their desks and, subsequently, with their families at night.

Still not sure you need a concierge?  Here are a few more reasons why you need to hire us …

  • The average U.S. worker admits to frittering away more than 2.09 hours a day, not counting lunch, on personal business. This costs companies an estimated $759 billion a year.” – Salary.com and AOL Survey.
  • The average worker skips 24 minutes of his or her lunch break every day, the equivalent of approximately two weeks more holiday per year (figures from Data Monitor).
  • Since 1969, family time for a working couple has shrunk an average of 22 hours a week. U.S. Government
  • Workplace stress is costing the Australian economy $14.81 billion a year. Medibank-commissioned research
  • Stress related presenteeism and absenteeism are directly costing Australian employers $10.11 billion a year. Medibank-commissioned research
  • According to the Health and Safety Executive, 6.5 million sick days are taken every year as a result of stress — costing £7m per week and £1.4m per working day.
  • Approximately 13.7 million working days are lost each year in the UK as a result of work-related illness at a cost of £28.3 billion per year – National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence.

When looking at these statistics, it is easy to see why time has become the commodity of the century and will be even more so in the decades to come. The popularity of concierge services stems from the fact that people are stressed out, overworked, and need help dealing with life so they can spend their free time nurturing themselves and their families. As good workers become harder to find, businesses are looking for concierge services to offer as perks to keep valuable employees happy.

That being said, below is a list of 20 ways you can use a concierge (the real list of what a concierge can do for you is endless)…

  1. Obtaining tickets to concerts, special events and sporting events
  2. Transportation Services – train, plane or automobiles … concierge can get it!
  3. Travel and Vacation Planning
  4. Business Referral Service – need a landscaper or a plumber?
  5. Restaurant Recommendations and/or Reservations
  6. Pet services
  7. Internet Research – need research done and you don’t have the time to do it?
  8. Personalized shopping and delivery
  9. Dry cleaning pick-up and/or delivery
  10. Grocery shopping
  11. Senior care
  12. Picking up or returning a gift
  13. Bill paying
  14. Auto Maintenance
  15. Home Organization
  16. Delivering a Meal – breakfast, lunch or dinner
  17. Prescription Pick-up and delivery
  18. Repair and Service Calls
  19. Sick Care – sick in bed? Call a concierge and they’ll do your errands, arrange for dinner to be delivered and can be on hand to help your family out

So get your life back!  Hire a concierge to do what has to be done so that you can do what you’ve always wanted to do.

About the Author: Katharine Giovanni is an award-winning author and the world’s leading concierge trainer and consultant as well as a Certified Concierge Specialist (CCS) and Speaker. She is one of the founders of Triangle Concierge and is the Chairman of the Board and Founder of the International Concierge and Lifestyle Management Association (ICLMA) as well as the author of several business books including her award-winning book Going Above and Beyond and The Concierge Manual.

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30

Aug

2011

I’m sure there are people out there that enjoy cleaning their home, but perhaps you’re not one of them.  If you prefer to spend more time enjoying life than cleaning up after it, here are a few tips on how to make cleaning quick and painless.

Top down

As a general rule, clean all top surfaces before you vacuum. You know that if you start at the bottom – the floor – you’ll only end up with crumbs all over it again once you start wiping down the benches.There’s something satisfying, too, about just sweeping stuff onto the floor ready to get sucked up by the vacuum later.  Don’t forget to suck up the dust bunnies hiding under your bed.

Start small

I like breaking down my cleaning to one room at a time – it makes cleaning the whole house seem like less work, which means I’m more likely to get on with it.  Tidy up, do the tops, then move onto the next room, vacuuming everywhere at the end.

High maintenance

Maintaining your place throughout the week makes doing that overall clean a lot easier.  All those things that your Mum nagged you about, like hanging up your clothes or washing up your dishes actually make sense after all.  Simple maintenance makes doing your regular clean a piece of cake.

What about products?

When it comes to products you generally get what you pay for. If you pay a little more the product often lasts longer because you don’t need to use a lot at each clean. Keep them stored together so you can see when it’s time to stock up again.  You’ll need a spray for your benches and surfaces, floor cleaner, laundry detergent, dishwashing detergent and a disinfectant. Try electrostatic dust wipes too – they are really fast and easy. There are all sorts of other specialist cleaning products available on the supermarket shelves but usually you won’t need to bother with those.Only buy the basics to begin with.

Cleaning is the thing most of us love to hate.  But the easier you make it for yourself, the more motivated you’ll be to stay on top of it – leaving you to get on with the things in life you really do enjoy, dust free.

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25

Jan

2011

Is your computer becoming progressively slower?  Are you finding it almost impossible to find important files?  If your answer is yes, then perhaps it’s time for a little computer organisation.  This is like behaviour management for your computer!

A good start is to clear out the old files that you no longer use.  If you haven’t used it in 6 months or more, you’re probably not going to.  There will of course be certain types of files that will be exempt from this as they legally need to be retained, but anything else that is of no value can go.  Old files can be saved to an external drive or a disc, or deleted if they are no longer needed.

Make sure that you have a good filing system set up.  Decide what categories of information you need and create a folder with each of these categories. You can always add subcategories later if you need them.  For now, just set up the main folders.  Once established, your files can be moved in to the appropriate folder and will be easily tracked down when you need it.  Windows 7 uses a system called libraries which provides a great starting point for organisation of your files.

It is also a good idea to go through your emails, and delete anything that is not required.  It makes sense to create folders in this area too so that you are able to keep track of clients, projects and topics or dates.  Go through your sent items folder and clear out anything that is no longer needed, particularly emails with large attachments because they take up precious space.

Just taking these few initial steps will help you to organise your computer, save you time, and increase your productivity.  And imagine how good it will feel when someone asks for something, and you know exactly where it is!  Start today!

If you need a hand – call me, your personal concierge, I’d be happy to help!

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