Trust me, I am not one to talk on organization. I had some notes here somewhere on organization. I just can’t seem to find them. Organization is not what many people think it is. Some people point to a clean desk. Some people believe it is everything put neatly into its own cubbyhole. Some people think it is minimalism. And yet, ‘organization’ is really none of those things.

Organization is being able to know where you’re going, what you need along the way, and at any time being able to understand where the tools and items you need are. Some folks with the messiest of desks know which pile holds the next thing they need. Their lives are not planned directly from point A to Z. Instead, they choose a set of ellipses and S curves with a few spirals thrown in for good measure. Yet, they know where they want to go and what they want to do.

The person who is neat as a pin, everything put away, and sitting at an empty desk unsure of what’s next or what his or her next step will be is the one I worry for. The person in the last paragraph has a plan. The person in this paragraph has a set of habits. The question is, where will these habits lead? And, what kind of spark will it take to move from habits to future desires?

I am not trying to make you believe that everyone who is messy and scattered is actually working to a higher plan. Yet, as you get to know people, you will find some that do. Nor am I trying to tell you that people who are neat really don’t know where they’re going, although some don’t. And both groups have people who have not taken the time to consider what it is they really want to do in the future. And there are people in both groups who have worked out their plants and know exactly where they want to go.

What I want to tell you is that you can’t judge an e-book by its cover. Some people, like some books, will follow fantastic winding roads through beautiful scenery and epic adventures. And you cannot judge anybody from the appearance of their outer cover, because everyone is unique and often times full of surprises.

The real thought I want to bring you to is one about yourself and not others. This question is for you. Have you planned where you want your story to take you? What type of epic adventures will you have? And what kind of roads will you walk along the way?

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Saving Time

It seems as though I’ve been fighting a cold this week. The illness is something that my wife gave to me. She likes to share. It’s not a significant event, yet it is an annoyance. It is one of those speed-bumps that just gets in the way of getting other things done.

I am trying to work from my desktop, and I have an annoyance where when I use dragon naturally speaking it crowds everything to one side of my widescreen monitor.  I don’t know why it is just another annoyance. It seems as though we are faced with annoyances on a daily basis, and I find that if I just look at them, and grumble about them, they come back for more.

I need to divide all my annoyances into various lists. A list of what I can correct, and a list of what I cannot correct. One way or another most things are correctable. The question comes down to does one have the skill to correct it, and do they have the time. Hence the ‘To Do List’ is born.

What we need is an ongoing list of items that need to be resolved. Review the ToDos first thing in the morning to see what you can do that day, and again before you go to sleep to help set up the next morning’s needs. Here is the big question though, where do we get the time to do so? Well over half of anything is organization, so if you can organize your To Do List, it will give you some of the time needed. Other time you can find by not playing a game on the electronic device for as long as you usually do. You can also save time by not looking at your emails and texts every 15 minutes. Look at them 4 times a day: morning, 2 o’clock, 5 o’clock, and right before you go to bed. Another way to save time is to clear out your email, so only those emails that are important to you get to you. If you work at this, there is always time hiding somewhere.

Do not short change your rest and do not shortchange those who you love.

Try this and see how it works. I am doing this also, and we can surely get together and exchange notes on what works and what does not.

I thank you for being with me today. I Hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Give it to Someone Organized

It is another beautiful day here in Colorado Springs, not too hot, not too cold, and not too many clouds.

They say, “If you need something done, give it to somebody who’s busy.” What they are really saying is, “If you really want something done give it to someone organized.” The difference between organization and being unorganized is the difference between getting something done, and not knowing where you even put the request.

Please don’t look to me as the perfect person who is preaching to everyone else. Nine times out of 10 I fall into the latter part of the above difference. Not because I am a terrible person. I’m not blowing you off. I’m not acting passive aggressive. I just like to do a lot. Unfortunately, being organized is not one of those things I love to do, nor am I good at it.

I must’ve missed the lecture in school. The one that taught us to make everything else easy keep working at the hard things. Especially, if the hard stuff is organization. And yet, there is good news, you are never too old to learn new skills and ideas.

For years I told people who I worked with, to make sure they see me write down what they are asking me to do. I explained to them I had a mind like a steel trap. That poor thing was permanently rusted shut. And, I did write down the requests I was given. I found I needed one more solution to one more problem.

I would write down the requests that people gave me on anything I was carrying with me at the time. Anybody see the problem I was running into? Yeah, that’s right, I would have notes all over the place, and either not know where they belonged, or they were super cryptic because I was writing too fast. Okay, I needed an organized system.

My system came in the form of a small spiral notebook put out by Cambridge who is a subsidiary of Mead.  It has pages lined on one side and graph paper on the other. I go through between five and six a year.

My system is to write down who is requesting, what they need, and when they need it by, any relevant notes and names of anyone else involved who I should work with. If these people are off-site, I need their phone numbers and/or email addresses.

Does this mean I never missed a deadline and never miss something I should be doing? No. It does give me a better chance to get whatever it is done in an efficient and timely manner.

Have a great day, and please feel free to ask questions at any time.

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