Category Archives: Office

Make the Most of Your Media Interview

Red faces, stuttering, the shakes. Everyone gets nervous before they have to go on camera or do an interview with the press, whether they have done it a thousand times before or never at all. Being interviewed doesn’t just mean answering a reporter’s questions; it is an opportunity for you to get your message out there. Being prepared for an interview will make you less nervous and more confident, and with confidence comes increased credibility. Follow these tips to seem like an interview pro.

  1. Practice: If possible, ask the interviewer for the questions ahead of time so that you can prepare answers. Get a friend or a colleague to ask you these questions- and any other questions you feel the reporter may ask. This allows you to get over any rough patches or places you may stumble in your answers.
  2. Be honest: If you don’t believe in what you are saying, why should you expect others to? “I don’t know” is an Video camera viewfinderacceptable answer. Be sure to tell the reporter the steps that you are taking to get the answer. Don’t be afraid to ask if what you are saying is clear.
  3. Don’t assume: Don’t assume that the reporter knows what you are talking about and avoid jargon. Sometimes terms we use every day at work are lost on the general public. This can lead to misinterpreting and things being taken out of context.
  4. Get your message out there: The interview is about you. Make sure that your messages are clear, quotable and of interest to the reporter. Just because something is important to you, doesn’t mean that the reporter – or public – will care.
  5. So you are going to be on camera: Check your appearance right before you go on. Wear solid colours, but not black or white because you will look like you are disappearing – a navy suit is always a good option. While being interviewed, relax and smile – people can tell if you are uptight and nervous. Don’t rock back and forth or shift the weight of your legs.
  6. Interviews by phone: Use a landline; cell phones are more likely to cut out. Eliminate all distractions – turn off the TV and Computer and put a Do Not Disturb sign on your door. Keep your notes nearby and organized so that you aren’t shuffling for answers. If on the radio, remember to smile – people can hear it in your voice!

Remember, this is your interview. You may not be able to control the questions, but you can control how they are answered. Being prepared can make interviews seem a lot less daunting.

The Roadmap for a Healthy Business Trip

>A good business trip takes careful planning. So does maintaining a healthy lifestyle and a healthy weight. If you travel frequently in your line of work, or for your business, you know how difficult it can be to keep up good habits and how easy it is to slip into bad ones. The good news is that, with a little added preparation and smart choices, you can considerably reduce that risk. Here’s how:

Set realistic goals – Goals will help you stay focused while you are away, but be realistic. For example, instead of losing weight, why not set maintaining your current weight as your goal?

Be prepared – It’s easier to maintain your health and weight with a little preparation. For example, call ahead to the hotel where you are staying and see if they have a fitness centre. Or, for frequent stays, consider a pass to a local facility. And be sure to take along your workout gear.

Scan the menu – Taking time to review your choices will help you make healthy ones.

Consider avoiding foods with descriptions such as ‘fried,’ ‘crispy,’ or ‘battered.’ They are likely high in fat. Instead, look for high-fiber meals, like a baked potato or salad.

For baked potatoes and salads, avoid high-calorie dressings and sour cream, or extras such as meat, cheese, egg and croutons. Or, ask to have dressings and toppings on the side so you can control your portions.

Ordering a small or kid-size portion. This is a great way to reduce the amount of calories, sodium and fat you consume.

Eat on schedule – Skipping meals or not eating for long periods increases your hunger and the risk that you will overeat when you finally make time for food.

Curb the urge to splurge – Keep snacks like graham crackers and fruit on hand in your car, bag or briefcase. This will help keep your appetite in check when standing at the buffet table or ordering a meal.

Forego fast food where possible – If fast-food restaurants are your only option, remember that many now have health-smart choices. Be sure to ask for the nutritional information and check the calorie, fat and fiber counts before ordering. Often, these choices aren’t healthier than what is on the main menu. Avoid the value meals; the calorie content is generally equal to two meals.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at http://www.organizeanything.com

Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
http://www.organizeanything.com
Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Working with Your Memory to Find a Lost Item – Eileen Pease

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This blog entry comes courtesy of Eileen Pease of Dynamic Learning. Eileen is a leader in maximizing your memory and brain function to increase your productivity at work and at home. If you’re interested in learning more or arranging a training session for your organization, please visit her website.

There is nothing more frustrating than trying to find a misplaced item. The pressure to find it increases exponentially when it is something really important – like a passport.

Stop searching, sit down and think. There is a 99.9999% probability that the item is exactly where you left it. Here are some brain-friendly steps to help you find it.

  1. Stop imagining the awful things that will happen if you don’t find it. That distracts your mind away from the work you need to do with your memory to find it. Imagining awful consequences will stress your brain, decreasing your memory.
  2. Remind yourself in a friendly, optimistic way that you will find it soon because you know there is a logical reason why you haven’t found it yet. When you do find it, you will be relieved and amused.
  3. Take three deep, relaxing breaths and sit or stand exactly where you were the last time you had the item for sure.
  4. Keep your focus on that moment, look around slowly, and think about the next steps you took. Don’t let your mind run off into saying things like, “But I already looked there.” You have not found it yet because you have been distracting yourself with other thoughts and commands. Calm your mind and focus on where you were and what you were doing the last time you had it for sure.
  5. Remind yourself that this is the last place you were when you are certain you had it. Review the evidence. For example, “I had my passport in my hand while I was booking my flight.”
  6. Identify the one most probable place you would have put the item. Look for it there. If you don’t find it, step back and look to see if it could have fallen somewhere, slipped behind or under something, or been covered up somehow.
  7. If you still can’t find it, sit down again to think. Remind yourself it is exactly where you left it. What were you thinking about at the time? Was there anybody else involved? Were you listening to your radio or TV? Did somebody phone you or drop in just at that time? Did you go out to your car? Were you cleaning up in a hurry shortly afterward? It is often helpful to actually re-live and act out the sequence of what you remember happened next. Your memory knows what happened next, it just needs you to trigger the reminder.
  8. Continue to work calmly with your memory. Remind yourself you are going to find it and it is better to keep concentrating on it now, than to give up and search for it later. Acknowledge that physical items do not vanish into thin air and rarely get stolen or deliberately hidden by somebody else. Guard against *fantastic* solutions and reassure yourself there is a logical reason why you have not found it so far. When you do find it, there will be a perfectly logical reason for it to be there.
  9. If necessary, revisit in your memory the last moment when you are certain you had it in your hands. Are you making any unchecked assumptions about where you were or what you were doing? Look in your planning calendar, talk to anyone who was around at the time, and re-create that moment. See yourself holding the item and mentally follow the scene that unfolds.
  10. Sometimes the search becomes too irritating. Then it is better to stop and turn your attention to something completely different. Sleep on it. Next morning, rested and with a fresh perspective, start again at step number two.

Once you find the item, note the logic of where it was and recognize the assumptions you were making that stopped you from finding it sooner. I would love to know your lost and found story; please email me atepease@eileenpease.com or phone me at 902-483-5700. If you have faithfully tried every step above with no success, phone me and I will help you get your memory to tell you where your lost item is.

 

Start the New Year Right

It’s a new year, and a time when people like to start fresh and sample some new approaches to areas in your life you would like to improve. You have seen the development of the organizing and redesign shows take over our television stations. It’s been called the latest trend, the new dieting, but finding improved ways to organize your life is here to stay. Why? There’s just so much return on investment.

One thing we often forget when making changes and it’s especially true this time of year is the importance of starting slow and making small goals:

1. Your desk is a workplace- remove other non- work related items and place them clean deskelsewhere. Hang photos on the wall and place awards, personal objects and knickknacks on a shelf or credenza.

2. Keep the things you use the most close by and within reach, and items that you require only occasionally further away. This includes files, supplies and personal items.

3. Get rid of the extras- how many of one item do you really need-157 pens, 4 coffee mugs- give away, throw away or return to the stationary/supply area.

Speaking of extras, we usually have between 5-10 extra pounds that we have put on over the holidays. Looking for healthy time saving ways to get back on track? Here’s a few tips:

1. Plan your meals and grocery list ahead of time. You can save time and money. Eating healthier during your day will keep your energy up and your waistline down.

produce isle2. Stick to the outside aisles at the grocery stores. This is where we find our core foods, like fruits and vegetables. It’s a great time to eat more fruits and vegetables. Think of these as a healthy snacking alternative. Try a fruit you’ve never had before.

3. Cut back on your portion sizes- especially when eating out. Order half portions or ask for a to-go container for the remainder of your meal. This also gives you another meal you don’t have to prepare.

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Organize Anything Gift Certificates

Do you have someone on your holiday list that is impossible to shop for? No idea what to get the friend that seems to have everything? Try an Organize Anything gift certificate for Christmas this year! It’s the perfect choice for the person in your life who needs a helping hand getting a handle on the clutter and disorganization in their life.
Whether they need organizing help at home or in the home office, Organize Anything can help. Know someone who could use some extra assistance getting their productivity up? We have a gift certificate for that. Know a student who wants some making their study habits more efficient? Have a grandchild moving out this spring to go to university? Buy a downsizing or relocating gift certificate for their parents.
Our gift certificates options are wide open so that they can be tailored to meet your needs. We offer professional organizing and productivity services. We also are available for public speaking engagements, teaching seminars and life coaching. Visit our website, http://www.organizeanything.com for all the details.
Please contact us if you aren’t sure if we offer the service you’re looking for organize1@organizeanything.com or (902) 233-1577. And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter too (@organizeanow)!

Holiday Office Survival Guide

Holiday office parties can be a chance for you to shine in front of your employer and peers. You can take advantage of the casual setting to have some fun and advance your career, or misbehave and cripple your career. Follow these tips to make sure you adhere to the highest standard of office party etiquette:

1) Don’t pass up the opportunity! It’s not every day that you get the chance to have a one-on-one personal conversation with the boss. Even if you can’t stay the whole evening don’t be a no-show. Arrive, mingle, and then make your exit.

2) Always ask before bringing a guest. Bringing your spouse or partner is a great way to meet new people in the office and showcase a bit of your personal life. However, not all office parties are open to families.

3) Don’t overindulge. Just because there’s a buffet or an open bar doesn’t mean that you should help yourself all night. You never know whose eyes are on you.

Businesspeople at Christmas party

Businesspeople at Christmas party

4) Dress appropriately. Dress more festively than you would for a day at the office, but more conservative than you would for a night out on the town.

5) Get involved. Don’t be afraid to take part in activities at the party. You’ll stick out more if you refuse to be a team player and participate.

6) Don’t forget it’s still a business event. Be sure to take the time to chat with your colleagues and superiors. Get to know the people you work with, but maintain your professional image.

7) Be gracious to the hosts, and send a thank you note to management and the personnel who organized the event the next day for inviting you.

Office parties are a great chance to network and have some fun with your co-workers. Enjoy yourself, meet some new people and expand your contacts in the organization. By following our simple do’s and don’ts you’ll avoid making any embarrassing missteps.

Have a Hassle Free Holiday

It’s the holiday season.  A time for buying gifts, throwing parties and decorating your home.  All that work can leave little time for enjoying what should be the most wonderful time of the year.  So here are some quick tips to help make your holiday season merry and bright.

  • Make a list of all the people you plan to shop for with gift ideas that match their tastes. Consider gift certificates, which are easy to wrap and create less clutter.  Be sure to set a gift budget for everyone on your list.
  • Check weekly flyers for sales to plan your trip to the mall. The best times to shop are weekday mornings when there are fewer people shopping.  Some stores have personal shoppers who can assist you in finding the right gift.  And many stores have websites that allow you to save time by shopping from home online.
  • Set yourself a deadline to complete your gift buying so you have more time to enjoy the holiday season.
  • Planning a successful holiday party is much like planning any party. Start by selecting a date, preferably one that doesn’t conflict with other holiday gatherings.  Once done, determine where you want to host your party – at home, the office or at a favourite spot – and make reservations if necessary.  Now you’re ready to draw up your guest list!
  • Make a plan. Before you drag out boxes of lights and tinsel, visualize how you want your home to look. A good plan covers everything from your theme – such as An Old-fashioned Christmas – and colour scheme to the decorations you want to use and where you’ll place them.
  • Toss it. Sift through your holiday decorations and donate or purge any outdated or unwanted items. Be sure to test your lights to make sure they work properly. Replace all burnt-out bulbs and frayed cords.  If you need to buy new outdoor lights, consider strings with built-in timers.  They’ll save you time and energy costs.
  • Make a party of it! Invite family and friends to help you decorate, with the promise of eggnog and other holiday treats.  You could even purchase some craft supplies and have your friends over to create some memorable tree decorations. (And a few holiday season memories!)

Follow these simple ideas and enjoy the holidays the ways you were meant to – relaxing with friends and family.

 

The 2016 Organize Anything Top 10 List

The 2016 Organize Anything 10 Ten List

 

Every year we ask our clients, fellow organizers and our friends what products they’re using right now that make their lives easier. These ten products are ones we’ve tried or have had recommended to us and we love how they make our lives a little simpler – whether it’s at home, on the go, or in the office. Please let us know what products you’ve tried and loved!

1) The Tile App. We’re big fans of this little piece of plastic that tileensures we never lose our purse/wallet/laptop/bike/keys again. You can attach these self-contained GPS units to pretty much anything and sync it to an app on your phone or tablet. When you misplace whatever you’ve attached the Tile to, you simply log into the app and ask it to find your missing item. It will pull up a map that will show you the location down to 20m AND an alarm will start to sound from the Tile itself.

Each Tile lasts for approximately a year, and then you can re-order through their loyalty program for a great discount off the original price. To order visit www.thetileapp.com

passion2) The Passion Planner. We’re obsessed with the Passion Planner. It’s more than just a day-planner, it’s laid out so that you can track your personal/professional goals, your appointments, keep notes about the wonderful things that happened that week and provides space to brainstorm and journal too! We’re also fans of their pay-it-forward program and free planners to non-profit organizations. The planners come in academic (August to August), yearly or undated. You can learn more at www.passionplanner.com

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3) The UpCart. The UpCart is a stair climbing hand cart that can carry up to 100lbs! The cart is designed with three wheels on each side, so you’re able to easily pull it behind you up a flight of stairs, or across uneven ground. It has an adjustable handle, and because of the design of the wheels, there is reduced strain when pulling it. Whether you have loads of groceries to carry up stairs, or gardening supplies to get across the yard, the UpCart is a great solution to save your energy and your back. To order visit www.upcart.com

 

moonjar4) Moonjar Moneybox. This is a fantastic way to teach children about managing money! A fun, easy way to introduce financial management to children the Moonjar Moneybox has three separate deposit jars. One is for spending money, one is for long-term savings, and the third is for charitable giving. We love the idea of introducing kids to giving back at a young age! The kit includes a transaction record and a family guide to help parents have meaningful conversations about money with their children.

 

 

5) Max Mirani Mobile Closet. This carry-on suitcase mobileis everything you need for your next business trip. Designed to fit in most airlines carry-on luggage compartments, it’s also has compartments for all of your necessary items that fold together to keep clothes and toiletries ready to go. When you arrive to your hotel, you can hang the Mobile Closet up, and your wardrobe is ready to be accessed – no unpacking involved. We’re all about easy packing and travelling light, so this suitcase makes our list for sure. And the best part? The entire interior of the suitcase can be removed and used as a tote bag! If you’d like to learn more or purchase, visit http://www.maxmirani.com/collections/move-mobile-closet-ii

nest6) Nest Thermostat. How much do we love the Nest Learning Thermostat? So much! This genius piece of tech will keep your home comfortable while saving you tons of money and keeping your home eco-friendly. It tracks your patterns and builds a temperature profile unique to you and your family. It only takes a week to recognize patterns and the temperatures that your family prefers. It has a bright, stylish display that can be easily seen and adjusted and it will adapt seasonally. The coolest feature? You can connect it to your smart phone and adjust the temperature from the office or the car in case you’re coming home early or you forgot to adjust the thermostat before vacation. To purchase visit www.nest.com

7) Wireless Charging Pad. We hate cords. They’re wirelessmessy, get tangled and always seem to be missing. A wireless charging pad for our mobile devices is so stress free and easy to use, that we can’t help but love it. We’re fans of the Duracell pads because they can be used with any brand of mobile device. Simply keep your charging pad plugged in, and place your smart phone on top when you need to charge it. They come in a standard 1-device size, but if you have a busy family on the go, you can get pads that charge up to 6 devices at once. To learn more or to purchase visit www.duracellpowermat.com

 

aqua8) Aquanotes. We don’t know about you, but inspiration can hit at any time. We love this notepad that sticks to the wall of the shower and you can write on it, even when it’s wet! Simple and easy to use this fun addition to your shower stall is great gift or idea for the person in your life who gets struck with inspiration at any moment.

 

tilley

9) Tilley Hats. They’re tagline says they’re the best hats in the world, and we tend to agree! We’re really feeling their new TTW2 Tec-Wool hats. It’s made of a wool blend that keeps your head comfortable by automatically expanding in heat and contracting in cold to keep the air flow around your noggin the perfect temperature. Not only is Tilley a Canadian company but they guarantee their products for life! We’re fans of this durable traveller’s hat and love all the fun styles you can now buy for both men and women. You can purchase Tilley hats in stores or online at www.tilley.com

Remember-the-Milk-Logo10) Remember the Milk. This to-do list turned task manager will have you organized and whipped into time-management shape in no time at all. This digital task manager can sync with all of your devices, allows you to add reminders for family and friends. You can have reminders sent to you by email or text or by Google reminder – the options are endless. We’re head-over-heels for this easy to use, fun, digital task manager. Create your account today by visiting http://www.rememberthemilk.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Into Organizing – Professional Organizer’s of Canada Guest Post

Ready, Set…Spring!

Who is ready to shake off the cobwebs of a dark, chilly winter season and welcome Spring into our spaces?

Now is the perfect time to identify your Spring organizing projects and schedule them into your calendar.

What is on your list this year? Here are our Top 5 Spring Organizing Projects to help get you inspired:

  1. Wardrobe Switch: Swap out your fall/winter wardrobe for lighter shades and fabrics. Portable racks make this task a breeze. Think seriously about donating items you didn’t wear last season!
  2. Under the Bed De-Clutter: Who doesn’t like a clean & clear space under the bed? Pull out all of the items lurking, and be sure to chase away the dust bunnies! Re-locate items to the place where they belong and let go of anything not needed anymore.
  3. Garage Changeover: Time to get ready for outdoor activities! Put up the sleds & shovels and bring down the bikes. Sports equipment storage products keep your garage well organized.
  4. Garden Planning: There are many tasks associated with getting your Spring garden ready. Mark key ones into your calendar: clear debris; rake lawn; start indoor seeds; plan flower/vegetable locations, etc.
  5. Spring Cleaning Tote:Make this task a breeze by putting together a Spring cleaning tote to take to each room as you go. We recommend including gloves, dusting cloths, paper towels, your favourite cleaning products, toothbrush, scissors, and a labeller of course

Happy Organizing!

The Flaw of January 1

Quote from author, Ellen Goodman:
“We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential.’  

Paper Trail: Common Sense in Uncommon Times by Ellen Goodman

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