Deep Breath

You know those days where the so-much-to-do-so-little-time cliche is overwhelmingly true for you? When you are surrounded by fires and are spinning in circles, beating each blaze in turn? When you don’t even have a minute to think?

Our natural response to this is to go in swinging — do as much as we can as fast as we can and all at the same time. This is counter-productive. Our heart is in the right place, but our head isn’t driving.

Next time this happens, would you try something new?

Take a deep breath.

Take a deep breath and rapidly prioritize. I’m only talking about a minute here, no major planning. Just decide what needs to be done next and then next after that. Once you have a start on your priorities, start doing them. I’m all for plowing — but in a straight line! It works better than running in circles or a scatter-shot approach.

The deep breath gets you off on the right foot. Collect yourself a minute. So often we respond to others’ urgency or react emotionally before thinking things through. Remember, tension will work against you. Give yourself a few seconds to make sure you react wisely and think through your priorities well.

If you will focus on one thing at a time, knocking them off the list as you go, you will get more done faster. You will be thinking more clearly and be able to handle each item well. Once each thing is done, you have one less task to think about, and that relief will snowball the more you do.

DEEPBreath --Now Get it done!

Moving — Pre-Planning II

This is the second in a series. For the first part, click here.

Sketch a floor plan. This will be helpful when you actually move the furniture, of course, and it also helps with decisions about what will fit where and what may need to be let go. The fewer decisions you have to make on the spot on moving day, the easier it will be.

The rooms in your new location will probably have a different layout than the old location. A rough layout of the new place will allow you to think through and map out where each big piece of furniture will probably go. When you are standing in front of the truck, it’s much easier to know you know. You can even hand off the plan to someone else to direct traffic, as long as you have better descriptions than I do on my sketch (pictured).

As you work through your floor plan, you will probably see some things that need to go on your to-do list (i.e., buy a TV mount or install outlet on a certain wall or sell the enormous entertainment center that won’t fit anymore). Add them to the list right away!

Start using stuff up. Once you know you are moving, avoid the big grocery shopping trips or the warehouse store foray to stock up on paper supplies (except paperware for those in-between meals). The less you have to move, the better. A few creative meals won’t hurt anyone, so use up what you have as much as you can. It’s easier to move the kitchen when your refrigerator and freezer and cupboards are not slam full.