life design

Well, here we are again. It is the start of the new year, and I am just now getting back to writing this newsletter. Phooey. As I've said before, I am a very, very well-seasoned procrastinator! ;)

In fact, in case you haven't yet noticed, I am one of those Type A personalities that tends to research things to death before making a final decision. So, while preparing for the Christmas season, I spent time finding a boatload of helpful holiday tools online. That research blossomed into a Holiday Helps series on my blog, but put me a bit behind on my newsletter writing schedule.

And then, of course, we have the new year. More research. This time, it's planners and calendars. I have collected a slew of free printables to share with you, but they'll have to wait... I'll be posting them on the blog, so be sure to subscribe to get the latest updates (if you haven't already).

Anyway, the mere thought of even thinking about the idea of New Year's Resolutions just wears me out! But, this a good time to make changes... the holiday break is nearing its end, we'll be writing 20092010 on our checks when the bills come due, the kids will be back in school, and we'll be back to our regular routines. For me, that is part of the problem... routines far too easily turn into ruts... and we get stuck...

I want to challenge you this month to join me in breaking free from the old routines. Re-evaluate your priorities. Is your life effectively reflecting your values? What is the biggest, most important thing for you right at this moment in time? Is it the two-year-old at home? Is it the man you just married? Is it a community service project? Is it your health? It's time to stop... look... listen... feel... refocus.

Make a decision today to re-prioritize your life if things have gone askew. Not next month or next summer or next year... now!

In the words of my all-time-favorite-organizer-in-the-world, Peter Walsh, now is the time to "Live your best life."

Michelle's Signature

Professional Organizer

P.S. January is Get Organized Month! Start off the year on the right foot with a Productivity Power Hour Consultation for only $50! Schedule online or call me at (859) 321-4759 before January 31st to take advantage of this specially-priced offer!

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planning prowess

To help me refocus on this journey—redesign my life, if you will—I need to write my plan down and revisit it daily. I am a visual learner and having things on paper helps me tremendously. (If you are an auditory learner, you might create an affirmation recording for yourself. If you are a tactile learner, you might design a three-dimensional vision board for yourself.) But, for now, let me share my "planning plan" with you...

I always look forward to the new year because I get a new planner, fresh and clean, a blank slate to make my own. Every year, I learn a little more about myself and what works best for me during that particular phase of my life. And as our lives and our needs are everchanging, so is my planner! ;)

In all my research last month, I simply could not find exactly what I was looking for in a planner—I am rather particular—so I decided to create my own. Just last year, I discovered that a small clutch, designed exclusively to house a two-month daily planner, works perfectly for me at this point in my life. I always have my calendar, pen, cash, id, and notes with me.

This has come in tremendously handy when stuck in the waiting room at the doctor's office for longer than my sick little girl wants to be... and it's about the only time I'm actually thankful that Amanda likes to draw on "mommy's paper"!

So, why didn't I just order a refill planner for my clutch, you ask? Well, the layout of the planner didn't entirely suit me. As you've learned, prioritizing tasks is an issue for me, so I need something that will help me stay focused on what is most important. I need something that will help me identify a few key tasks that must get done each day, and yet still keep track of my future to-dos and all my creative ideas (as they don't seem to come around all too often anymore).

In my research, I found that most pocket-size planners are set up in the weekly or monthly format rather than the daily format that I need. Unfortunately, the two or three daily pocket-size planners that I did find were either not quite the right size to fit into my clutch or they were set up exactly the same way as my old planner. (Plus, I was hoping to find something "pretty" this time!)

The new planner that I designed combines ideas from D*I*Y Planner, Printable CEO, Getting Things Done, Productive Flourishing, momAgenda, and lobotoME. I have adopted and adapted ideas from all these creative thinkers to design something that really caters to my needs. I've even added pages to help me track leads, clients, blog ideas, and 60-second "commercials" for BNI meetings! Plus, it's fully customizable. I can add or remove pages as needed to keep my clutch both portable and pretty!

So, what about you? Have you already settled on your planner for the year? What are your "must-haves"? How do you go about choosing your planner or calendar? I'd love to hear from you!

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blog highlights

Between October, November, and December, a total of 27 new organizing tips & ideas were added to my blog, and the new Holiday Helps series was a huge hit! Some of the most popular blog entries from the last 3 months were...

  *  Thanksgiving : Menu Planner @
  *  Wednesday Wisdom : Joyful Living
  *  Friday Fave: Yoono
  *  Holiday Helps : Budget Forms
  *  Holiday Helps : Cards, Decorations, and Parties, Oh My !!
  *  Holiday Helps : Gift Wrap Supplies

Don't forget to e-mail me questions about your toughest organizing dilemmas, or your favorite organizing tips. If I feature an answer to your question, or your tip on my blog, you could win some real neat organizing goodies!


productivity power hour

Get Organized Month

Yay! The new year is here... time for fresh starts, ambitious goals, and endless possibilities! To help you along your journey, I have put together a special offer just for you! Schedule your on-site Productivity Power Hour consultation today! Put my expertise to work for you to increase your efficiency and your profit margin! So, here are the details...

Productivity Power Hour : $100 $50
  *  Complete tour and needs assessment of space,
  *  Review of current routines, habits, and organizing systems,
  *  On-site verbal and written recommendations,
  *  Rough time estimate and plan-of-action, and
  *  “How-to” organizing principles instruction.

  Book Now

Wouldn't you like to regain control of your stressful home or work environment so you have the time, space, and energy to enjoy life to the fullest? The volume of information you will glean from this one-hour consultation is literally invaluable! Invest in yourself for a change, and get the new year started off the right way!

january 2010

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