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Back to School – Back to Schedules

Posted on 29 August 2013 by Total Secure Shredding

by Sue Crum, Professional Organizer

While summer is still within our sights, it’s not too early to start some simple planning before school starts.

Maybe you’re saying, “Well, I don’t have any kids so I pay no attention to the start of school.”

May I suggest you give this idea a second look.

Summers ARE special, no doubt about them: long days, relaxing mindsets, flip-flops and bare feet, perhaps more minutes in nature. It might also be a time of relaxed deadlines or a bit of a Scarlett O’Hara mindset. You know the one -

“I’ll think about it tomorrow”

Grab a small notebook and pen; put on your thinking-visualizing cap and step outside for some breathing and dreaming.

  • What would it take for you to have a fabulous fall of 2013?
  • Is there a project you have been putting off starting?
  • Is there a relationship you wanted to repair, end or begin?
  • Were there plans for less stuff and clutter in your life but somehow you never scheduled the time to get started?

Write out some actions you could take this month to get you moving toward completing those items. David Allen, author of Getting Things Done, calls these “open loops” -  you know those nagging voices with volume reminding us of our “shoulds”. We should do this – we should do that.

Take time to write down when you will begin and decide the first step, or drop the task from your mind completely, or put it on a Someday/Maybe list (if the idea/task is in your control but you don’t have it as a high priority right now)

Maybe you do have children and you are getting stressed just thinking about all that needs to happen before school starts. Get those thoughts down in front of you and out of your head so there’s room for more creative thought in there. Keep listing. Set the list aside and as you think of other things related to school starting, go back and add those. Circle the three that need to occur sooner vs. later. Pick the one that if you got that done, you’d be able to breathe more easily and enjoy more of summer.

No kids? Do the above with any work or home projects you have been putting off. Make a list of what tasks are rattling around in your brain; you know – the ones you THOUGHT you would have addressed by now. Circle the three most high value ones, meaning the ones that will help you the most in your business/work life or will reduce your stress for either work or home life. Then decide the ONE you could take action on this month and decide the first step-just one step and make a date with you to make that happen BEFORE Labor Day.

Once that task is completed, ask yourself the next logical action step to keep it moving toward completion.

If you do this, the end of summer won’t be nearly so sad for you as you’ve made a commitment and SCHEDULED time to address these gnawing projects. Then, back to school and schedules can be faced for fall with a fabulous outlook and vision of success!

Sue Crum speaks to associations and groups on how to clear clutter for better productivity and efficiency.

CALL her at 760.803.2786 to discuss how she might help your group or company. She is a professional organizing coach, and real estate stager who might be a perfect fit for your organization’s needs.

To receive her latest EBook, Red Hot etips List for De-Cluttering Your Life, sign up at You will also receive monthly RED Hot etips for energized and efficient people and learn where Sue is next presenting.

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