30 Days of Organizing

White Space

Posted by on May 20, 2010 in 30 Days of Organizing, 31 Days of Clearning, 31 Days of Self Care | 1 comment

I colored a mandala again last week. As I looked at the artists outline I wasn’t sure which were the petals and which the leaves. I reminded myself there were no rules this was now my art—color whatever I wanted. It’s a detailed mandala and I realized my first instinct was to color it all, fill in every blank with color, even the background. Then I stepped back and looked with my inner eye. I opened my mind and stretched myself a bit. Yes, all this from coloring! I realized it needed the ‘white space’ to help the color pop off the page. Interesting. What exactly is white space and does it apply to more than coloring?  I looked around at my walls and bookshelves. I discovered yes less is more—the empty space allows the painting or photograph to exist in balance with its surroundings. I have a tendency to put too many things on a shelf and so I tried a clearning experiment. I chose a bookshelf I’d already organized/decorated. I took away books and decorations that I was no longer deeply connected to and filled another donation box. The result was white space, or in this case empty space. Room to breath. What about white space in my life? How does it apply to non-physical space? Space between tasks—breaking up client work and balancing it with self-care or home caring. Space between reading books—so I sit with the experience before diving into another story. Space between giving and receiving. Space for asking and gracefully accepting another’s offer of help. Acknowledging that accepting help is giving a gift. The white space represents balance, harmony, natural flow, and even stillness. In my practice and life it feels as though I am at a standstill but I realize I am taking action by creating balance and discovering a new way to live and work. Weaving white space and balance into my daily living blends the line between who I am and what I do quite...

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Emptying my cup

Posted by on May 8, 2010 in 30 Days of Organizing, Books, Challenges, Web/Tech | 8 comments

April was my month off from my practice. To stand at the precipice on the mountain of experienced VA and ask what’s over there? I’d like to go find out! My journey has been rewarding, relaxing, and renewing. It was also my month to organize. Uh oh! I did organize my physical surroundings: my desk drawers and cubbys plus my bedroom closet. I also gave a huge box of books, which I’d outgrown, to the Friends of the Library. Oh, that was a learning streeeeetch for me! The part I procrastinated was organizing on the computer. I have a HUGE list: My documents, past client files, my favorites under a dozen folders in Firefox, not to mention my photos which are a haphazard disaster. Every time I sat down to begin I would get distracted by something else on the computer. I procrastinated all month—it was too overwhelming and I didn’t know where to start. I vented to my hubby. He had noted how well my new activity cards were working for me! With his prodding I wrote the name of each folder or individual task on a slip of paper. I folded them up and put them in a cup. At a ‘down’ point in my day my DH brought me the cup and a timer. I would pick a piece paper out of the cup and set the timer for 15 – 45 minutes, whatever I had space for, and GO. I’ve dipped into the cup three times this week and have cleared out three Favorites folders in Mozilla, there were hundreds of favs that I hadn’t been to in years. I feel lighter and freer and motivated to dip into the cup again! My task cup reminds me of the scene in 2012 where Lama Rinpoche tells Nima as he fills Nima’s cup of tea to overflowing:  Like this cup, you are full of opinions and speculations. To see the light of wisdom… you first must empty your cup. I also downloaded the audio book Getting Organized in the Google Era: How to Get Stuff Out of   Your Head, Find it When You Need It, And Get it Done Right by Douglas Merrill (former Google CIO). It will support my paperless direction and covers cloud computing and becoming more familiar with Google Apps. After several frustrating glitches I successfully synched my Outlook calendar with my Google calendar today—task by task I am emptying my cup. How full is your cup? What’s your emptying strategy? Do you sip away at it or pour it out and refill it to the...

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Creating Joyful Systems

Posted by on Apr 28, 2010 in 30 Days of Organizing, 31 Days of Clearning, 31 Days of Self Care, Authenticity, Challenges, Inspiration, Love, Self worth | 3 comments

Part of the process of being organized has been my yes list, clearning, letting go, and keeping my word to myself: my integrity.  I schedule work and personal appointments and tasks on my Outlook calendar, but this system didn’t work for me for personal activities, i.e. exercise, writing, journaling, and other ‘me time’ items.  I’d put them on my calendar and then not do them. I wanted to implement a fun and inviting system rather than a ‘have to’ or ‘should’ list.  Here’s what I came up with: a variety of business size cards with a graphic and the name of the activity.  Some activities are scheduled for 45 minutes and others for only ten or fifteen minutes.  I schedule the time block into my days/eves on my calendar and before that time block I choose a card from the appropriate bowl.  So I might do the same activity for 45 minutes or three 15 minute activities in that time slot. My integrity cards:45 minutes: Journal, Exercise, Write (Screenplay/Novel), Read15 minutes: Walk outside, Color, Be still, Type, Life Journal After lunch when I pick read for 45 minutes I’m delighted to take a break in this way and love that my schedule allows for this flexibility.  First thing in the morning I may pick walk outside and then be still for fifteen minutes.  I’m fully participating in my commitment to myself, my health and well-being—and embracing the joy and playfulness in the process! What do you do to keep your word to...

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April is all about organizing

Posted by on Apr 7, 2010 in 30 Days of Organizing, Challenges, Weblogs | 1 comment

So, first I clearned my living and working spaces and now I'm ready to organize them. I am naturally tidy and work as paperless as possible but I would like to be more organized at my desk and on the computer and particularly with my task lists. I've joined Stacy Brice's Organizing Salon and today we joined Kathryn Rose for an informative talk on Social Media Marketing. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn don't seem as daunting after her inside advice and tips! Kat is offering a mastery level course for Facebook at Supreme Social Media. You can also join in 30 Days of Organizing and blog, post, or tweet about your experience!  Tomorrow the fab-u-lous Amy Thill will be chatting about It's Your Time: 8 Principles of Successful and Satisfying Time Management Solutions. Perfect for where I'm at!  I'd love to hear if you feel you're already organized. If so, what you've done to get there, and if not, where you feel you need to...

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