Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Getting It Together

I'm a Virgo and Virgos are notorious for being organized, efficient and logical. While I’m not always logical, I am nothing if not organized and efficient.

One important facet of living the life of your dreams is getting a hold of your time. We spend too much time on inconsequential time wasters. Time spent looking for lost items, time spent mindlessly in front of the TV, even time you spend on other tasks like cleaning and preparing meals can be put to better use.

So I’ve compiled a list of a few of my favorite time savers and organizational tips. What you will love about this list is that there is nothing on it that is difficult or that will take up more time. And yes, I do do these things.

Never Lost, Always Found: I have a place for the things I use regularly. It’s a place that makes sense. Next to my door, there is a small stand with a single drawer. When I walk into my place, my keys go on top. Inside the drawer is the dog’s leash. Sounds simple, but by putting my keys and the leash in the designated place, I don’t waste precious morning time frantically looking for my keys AND Marty doesn’t spend precious time with his hind legs crossed!

Keep it in the Closet: Get undressed while standing in the closet. Dirty clothes go immediately in the hamper. While you’re in there, hang up anything you can wear again.

Kitchen Economics: Wash as you prepare the meal. Waiting until the end guarantees that you will have a sink full of pots and pans and who wants to do all that work after dinner? Often times, when one part of the meal is done, you can reuse the pot for the next dish.

When possible, store leftovers in reusable microwaveable dishes so you don’t have to reheat in another pot.

Dishwashers make everyone’s life easier, yet, no one likes to empty the darn thing! The worst part for me was sorting through all the silverware. Then I realized the silverware holder comes in sections. So now, I put all the small spoons in one section, larger spoons in the next and so on. Emptying the dishwasher is a lot faster now.

Mail Madness: I open the mail while standing over the trash can. All junk mail goes immediately into the trash. As do envelopes and extra papers I don’t need.

Paper Clutter Cure: I went to the drugstore and purchased a few cheap colored two pocket folders. They are labeled: Take Action, File, Bills and Read. Anything that requires me to do something (make a call, complete a form) goes into Take Action. Things like bank statements and insurance info, goes into the File folder. When I thumb through magazines, I tear out the articles I want to read and put them in the Read folder. Every couple of days, I look through the Take Action folder and tackle an item or two in that folder. When the file folder gets thick, that’s when I make use of mindless TV time and file while I watch. If I’m bored over the weekend or going somewhere where I have a wait (doctor's office, oil change), I grab an article out of the Read folder and read it.

What are some of the little things you do to stay organized and on task? I'm always interested in new tips and tricks!


Tee aka The Diva's Thoughts said...

Wow! Those are actually really great tips! When I finally move back home I'm actually going to use a few of these.

Cat said...

Your tips are great and I already do many of them (I'm an organization freak). The biggest time saver for me was shopping at a super walmart- they have everything! But in general I always plan out where I'm going so I don't waste gas going from east to west to north to south. Another incredible time saver- online billing (or direct money take out)- saves trees and money on stamps as well. also some places give you discounts for doing that like gieco.

The Excuse Eliminator said...

Online banking is great! I'm also a time management and organization freak.

I use Outlook to track tasks and to give myself reminders on everything from when to pay bills to what calls I need to return.

With gas prices being what they are, you almost have to plan your trips. I also have a little pad and paper to jot down the things I need to pick up.

I hate going to the store for milk and coming home with everything but milk! LOL