Archive for category: Time Saving Tips

Time Saving Tools for Anyone

Tip #1:

Be a Password Junkie

How many times have you clicked on the link, “forgot your password,” had to wait an absurd amount of time for the email, then followed all the prompts to change it? Now, how many times have you forgotten what the heck you just changed the password to? I am pretty sure that we have all done it. While having my computer tuned up, I learned about a handy application calledLastPass. This is a clever App that allows you to store all your passwords so you can securely login to your frequently visited websites and only have to remember the one master password! Never have the frustration of a forgotten password slow you down again.

Tip #2:

Take a Mental Sick Day

To make time, you need to spend some time…to regroup and reset. Here is why that makes sense. Lots of people have found that there is more benefit to taking some regular time off than to try and keep up on everything in life and put in your full forty every week. When you take a half day once a month to sit and plan your days ahead, you are no longer distracted with small things that must be done. It also gives you time to schedule the following month. Things may change but at least you will have a clearer idea of things that need to be accomplished and what needs to be prioritized. As a result of consistently taking this, much needed, time to plan ahead, you will feel less overwhelmed by your chaotic work and home life. To manage time more efficiently, consider taking a mental sick day.

Tip #3:

Don’t Dwell on Mistakes

We’ve all made them and we learn from them, but from time to time we have epic disasters. Whether it’s a missed flight, paid a bill late, or forgetting something important, it happens. Focusing on the catastrophe takes up valuable time. Use your time in a positive way to recover from your mistakes of misjudgment, questioning your gut, and use this time to reflect and ACT appropriately and you will turn this fiasco into an opportunity for growth. You are definitely going to spend time thinking about it, so turn those thoughts to how it happened and how you would do things differently next time. Forgive yourself for being human and discover why it happened and next time, you’re guaranteed to plan efficiently to avoid a similar debacle.

Tips #4

Identify your Time Robbers

We all have time robbers, but how do we identify them and, more importantly, how do we tackle them like a three hundred pound linebacker? Emails are an extremely common time robber. Many will spend 25 min composing the perfect email that captures the correct tone of voice when they could have used that voice to convey the message in about 1 minute. Another time robber is online distractions. Twenty percent of us spend more time at our desks on social media sites than we do working at that desk. Social media is a great way to stay connected, however, it is necessary to schedule time for Social Media so that you are not loosing time. Schedule 20 mins a day or half your lunch break. Whatever your schedule, stick to it. Some people can easily spend two hours a day on social media. Following the schedule for five days could save you over eight hours a week!

Tip #5

List Making

An oldy but a goody, making lists keeps all your commitments in one place. Finding the right tool to track everything you need to do for work, and for your personal life, is a task. The first step to finding the tool is identifying how you’d like to make and maintain these list. Are you a paper person? Or would you prefer an App that Sync’s to your phone so you can update on the go? If you are a paper person, consider getting a small notebook and separate out with post it, file sticky tabs, personal, and work. Start making bullets with each task and check them off weekly. If the task didn’t get completed re-write and move to the next week. There is something about having to re-write the list of things that didn’t get accomplished, that makes you want to finish is for the next week. If you prefer an APP, check these out:


Priority Matrix - This app allows you to prioritize and manage your tasks making it easier to delegate to others. It is an efficient app for making and saving your lists.

Download app for: Apple • Android


Wunderlist - To do list and task manager which allows you to set reminders and a due date on all of your pressing tasks.

Download app for: Apple • Android


Any.do - To do list and daily planner. This one got great reviews and looks very simple to use. Get things done with this app seamlessly since it’s a very organized format. My number one pick out of the three!

Download app for: Apple • Android


No matter who you are, there is time you can be saving. With these tips, you will be well on your way to efficiently managing your time. If you feel you are in a rut with your time management tools, or wish to have some assistance in implementing these tips, I hope you will think of us. Sorted Out has been a leading name in organization for almost 13 years. A trusted name in the industry, our talented and highly trained professional organizers are ready to help you administer a plan to help you conquer your time management challenges. Call us for a complimentary phone consultation today!

Tax Time Organization and Preparation

If you are like the thousands of people out there who don’t like to do your taxes, you are not alone! Getting organized for this process is daunting and down right kind of annoying to some of us. Unfortunately it has to be done. You could file an extension, but why wait? Get organized NOW with this tips. Or perhaps, it’s just a nice way of giving you a nudge and get you motivated.

RULE

  1. Develop a checklist of what you needed to prepare for taxes this year, then make a plan to set up a filing system to collect all this data throughout the year. TurboTax has a great Tax Preparation Checklist.
  2. For tracking daily expenses, like mileage, have a system that is updated daily. Write mileage information in a notebook kept in a car. Or track mileage on a calendar, or the notes section of a smart phone. Create a summary each month and at the end of the year, your records will be complete. Also consider an easy on the go app on your phone to get rid of the paper and go paperless. Shoeboxed Receipt and Mileage tracker is an excellent resource and was featured on the Today Show. This app is an online organizational tool and is approved by the IRS.
  3. Be sure to clear out your filing system of all the past years documents that support your tax deductions. File in bankers boxes, or sturdy plastic file boxes clearly labeled with that tax year. Also, add the year when these supporting tax documents can be shredded. More and more people are scanning their documents to keep paper files at a minimum. Just be sure that you have backups of these files. Also, Place a shred date on the bankers box or file box for future shred date.
  4. What to keep and what to toss? Check out the financial record keeping guide from Suze Orman for when papers can be tossed.

In all cases, consult with your accountant to get their recommendations for what to keep or toss. If you are interested in a professional organizer to help put systems in place for tracking tax information give Sorted Out, LLC a call to schedule a 20 minute free assessment. A small amount of time invested upfront, will make huge time savings when it comes to tax preparation time, and you’ll reap more rewards with more deductions.

Tonia HeadShot.blackandwhiteHappy Tax Time 2015!
Tonia Tomlin, Expert Organizer, Sorted Out, LLC

4 Easy Ways to Control Christmas Clutter and Organize your Holiday Season

With the stress of the holiday season in full swing, it’s easy to allow clutter to get out of hand and wreak havoc on all your holiday plans. However, with just a few easy steps, you can do a few things that will help you organize all your holiday activities so that you can spend more time enjoying the season rather than dreading it.

 

1. Create a gift wrap station

wrap station

Take inventory of your supplies. See what you already have–and what you need. Will you need to refresh stocks of gift wrap, gift bags, ribbons or bows? Make sure you have scissors and pens. Like cellophane tape, these gift wrapping necessities often go astray during wrapping season, so lay in a good supply before you begin. Include mailing supplies on your list, especially postal–approved parcel sealing tape. Masking tape, twine and cellophane tape can become caught in parcel handling machinery, delaying your gifts and goodies or even damaging them. Don’t run the risk to save a few pennies. Make a “to buy” list and add items to the shopping list. Buy extra tape. There are never enough rolls of tape on hand for holiday projects!

Next select your wrap station location. Good lighting and a comfortable work surface are a must, so consider placing a craft table near a window. Those in small homes can make use of a bed area, if they place a large sheet of poster board or cardboard on the bed before hauling out the supplies. Access to a computer and printer will help speed the process of mailing gifts. Look for a postal scale to make best use of the mailing tools offered by the United States Postal Service. Using their Click–N–Ship, you’ll be able to buy postage, print mailing labels and arrange for carrier pickup from the comfort of home. Don’t waste time in line!

 

2.  Home preparation 

home prep

When your house is in order, it’s much easier to relax. And, your guests will appreciate a clutter free and inviting home, as well. Invite Sorted Out over for a consultation to review your home and help define priorities for getting your house “guest ready”. Time is valuable during the Holiday Season, and if you find your time is short, then put us to work making your home organized for the holidays.

 

3. Create a master gift list 

gift list

Create folder with this master gift list and start taking notes about what you want to purchase for others keep track of their name, gift description, where you are going to purchase the gift, if you have to mail it, the budgeted about and if it’s been wrapped! This helps you stay on track with your budget and you don’t leave anyone out.

 

4. Use mobile apps

use apps

Use these fun apps this holiday season for shopping, organizing list, and menu planning. All of these are available in Apple’s App Store.

-Gift List Manager $1.99
-The Christmas List $1.99
-Santa’s Bag FREE
-Menu Planner $2.99
-Meal Board $3.99
-Meal Builder Pro $2.99

 

Let us know what you think – what are some of your go-to tips for staying organized during the holidays? Let us know on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/SortedOutOrganizing.

Ten Secrets to Staying Organized While Traveling

Summer is here, bringing with it the many joys of family vacations. Whether you head to the beach, the mountains, out of the country or to exotic locales, you probably agree that many joys of summer vacations, dealing with unforeseen travel mishaps and hassles is certainly not among them.

The good news is that there is an easy way to ensure that you stress less on your next vacation by following these ten easy tips for organized traveling. Read more →

8 Time Management Secrets for Anyone Everyday

Do you ever feel frustrated when at the end of the day you have this annoying feeling you have NO idea what you accomplished for the day? Often times, when you’re trying to get the most out of your day, normal things happen like: constant interruptions, fires to be put out in the field, and priorities get put to the waste side due to all of the above. Read more →