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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Organizing Inspiration

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Are You a Right-Brained or Left-Brained Thinker

This past weekend I devoured the book 4 Weeks to an Organized Life with AD/HD by Jeffrey Freed and Joan Shapiro. It hooked me in right away because it is the first book, of many, that I have read about AD/HD and organizing that explained AD/HD individuals are visual thinkers and that is a gift that left-brained thinkers do not have--or at least not as intense as right-brained thinkers and individuals with AD/HD.

The authors define right-brained thinkers and left-brained thinkers as follows:
"Right-brained thinkers are rapid-fire, nonsequential, visual thinkers. If you are right-brained thinker, you see things from many angles, often at the same time. You are a holistic, big-picture thinker, who needs to know why you are learning something before you can absorb it. You are a dreamer, and you tend to be distracted easily in your own endlessly changing internal world, as well as by the external world.

Left-brained thinkers are more sequential and linear in their thinking, learning in a step-by-step process. If you are left-brained, you think more in words than in pictures. You are logical and analytical. You keep track of time, and you tend to plan and prioritize. You are likely to finish one idea or task before starting on another.

Organization comes naturally to left-brained thinkers and very difficult if you are right-brained, visual thinker."

Previously, I understood that individuals with AD/HD are visual learners and that meant they needed visual reminders to learn and remember. However, the authors point out that if you are right-brained, then your visual mind holds its information in pictures. But these are not ordinary pictures. These are extremely vivid images and before they [right-brained] create anything they must create a picture of it in their mind. The authors state, "The term visual learner really refers to the way an individual stores information, not to how he or she takes in that information."

The authors also provide a quick assessment to help the reader determine if they fit the AD/HD profile. "If you answer six or more of these questions "yes," and you can see these patterns as present for your whole life, then it is likely that you do have AD/HD:
1. Do you procrastinate regularly patting off tasks that, for you, require a lot of mental energy?
2. Do you have difficulty completing tasks or projects?
3. Do you often forget or find yourself late for appointments?
4. Do you feel restless or full of nervous energy and compelled to do things?
6. Do you have trouble organizing yourself to do a complex task?
7. Do you find yourself lost in your own thoughts, even when someone is talking directly to you?
8. Do you have difficulty throwing things away, even if they have little value or specific usefulness to you?
9. Do you react quickly to conflicts?
10. Do you sometimes blurt things out and then wish that you hadn't spoken?
11. Do you take things to heart, finding yourself easily hurt and sensitive?
12. Do you find most of these problems disappear when you have something fun or interesting to do?"

What I find particularly useful about this book is it provides theory and background but also practical activities and powerful techniques to develop and harness the strengths of the visual right-brained thinker that can significantly help them to develop organizing skills that might otherwise be too difficult to master.

I highly recommend reading this book and following their 4 Week Plan if you are a right-brained thinker or have AD/HD.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekly Menus February 23-March 1

Monday-Thursday – I’m making it easy on myself this week and following Robin Miller’s Quick Fix Meals, four of them with Puttanesca Sauce as the base including
Pasta Puttanesca
Puttanesca Chutney over Chicken with Potatoes and Broccoli
Crabmeat Salad in Halved Honedew Melons
Tomato Soup with Bacon-Cheese Melts

Friday Mac and Cheese with Spinach

Saturday Chicken Pot Pie

Sunday - Sun-dried Tomato Pesto-Stuffed Pork

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Storables 25% Sale

I didn't want you to miss out on this information. Storables is having a 25% off EVERYTHING REGULARLY PRICED in their store until March 2nd (see details below)!

If you have been waiting to buy some products to help you with your organizing pursuits, now is a great time to get them!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Organizing Inspiration

“Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.” A.A. Milne

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Weekly Menu February 16-22

Monday - French Onion Soup and Roast Beef Sandwiches (use Saturday's leftover beef tenderloin)

Tuesday - Roasted Vegetable Stew with CousCous

Wednesday - Chicken Curry--roast extra for Friday's dinner (uses Tuesday's leftover roasted vegetable stew)

Thursday - Arugula-caramelized-onion-and-goat-cheese-pizza and Hawaiian-pizza

Friday - Creamy-fusilli-with-mushrooms-and-chicken (uses Wednesday's extra roasted chicken breasts)



Thursday, February 12, 2009

Organized Student

Is your middle schooler struggling with organizing their schoolwork or lacking organizing skills?

Get some tips and solutions by reading an article I was interviewed for by Metro Parent (pages 33-34).

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Organizing Inspiration

Organize your life around your dreams - and watch them come true.”

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Effortless Organizing Solution

Are you hand writing a grocery list every time you shop? Do you zig-zag through the grocery store because you are following your list and not shopping aisle by aisle in a straight forward route? If you are, you may be organized (you make a list and you bring it with you), but you’re not effortlessly organized.

To make your grocery list and shopping activities effortless, create a handwritten or typed list of all the items you typically purchase at your grocery store in the order your grocery store is laid out, i.e. aisle 1, 2, 3, etc. Make several copies for future use.

This makes these tasks effortless because you will have a pre-printed list and it will be in a logical order. Both make it easier for you to shop. If you send someone to shop for you, you are making the task truly effortless!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Weekly Menu

Monday 2/9–Chicken Piccata with Lemon Capers and Artichoke Hearts

Tuesday 2/10–Drunken-clams-over-cappellini

Wednesday 2/11– Chicken-satay-with-rice

Thursday 2/12- Bistro Egg Sandwiches

Friday 2/13– Spaghetti-carbonara

Saturday 2/14–Beef Tenderloin with BĂ©arnaise Sauce, Roasted Asparagus, Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Sunday 2/15– Antipasti Dinner Salad

Friday, February 6, 2009

Product of the Week

The elfa Mesh Gift Wrap Cart is a mobile gift packaging organizer for wrap, totes, tissue, ribbon and accessories. The design begins with a White elfa Medium 7-Runner Frame. Within the frame there are three Medium 1-Runner Drawers and two Medium 2-Runner Drawers. A Melamine Top provides the perfect work surface. Clipped to the exterior are Gift Wrap Organizer Accessories. A Ribbon Dispenser is a horizontal bar with screw-on finial for storing and dispensing ribbon on spools. Organize rolled wrap vertically with a Gift Wrap Organizer & Accessory Basket.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Organizing Inspiration

A quote from Peter Walsh, Clean Sweep host:
Organization is not something you do, it’s the way you live your life. It is not about simply cleaning up, it is about making mindful decisions about your life.”

Monday, February 2, 2009

Organizing Habit #28

Are you constantly forgetting birthdays and anniversaries? Now is the time to sit down and enter these special dates into one calendar that will keep track of these dates every year in the future. Make it a habit to consult your calendar monthly and weekly to give yourself plenty of time to find a card or a gift. Also check out or for free reminders of important dates.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Effortless Organizing Solution

I believe that most people don’t attempt to get organized because they think will take too much effort. I don’t believe organizing requires a lot of effort. In this regular blog, I will share my effortless solutions with you.

Do any of these statistics sound familiar:
51% of women cling to clothing they haven’t worn in three or more years.
64% find the stuff they no longer wear hard to get rid of because they might need it someday.
60% hold on to clothes that don’t fit anymore because they might lose or gain back the weight.
58% have clothes hanging in their closets with the tags still on them.
50% know they have too many shoes, boots, or handbags but cannot part with them.
54% complain that shoes, boots, and handbags are the hardest to store.
32% have too many T-shirts.
33% admit that their closets are bulging.
18% are actually embarrassed by their closets.

Is your closet jammed full? Does the thought of cleaning it out overwhelm you? You are probably making the project bigger than it needs to be.

Set up this one simple system and watch your closet space expand. Place a basket on the floor of your closet or near your closet. Whenever you come across an item of clothing that you haven’t worn in a year, needs repair, has a stain on it, doesn’t fit you NOW, or your simply do not like anymore, place it in the basket. When the basket is full donate what you can’t resell. Set this system up in all of your closets.

Weekly Menu

Monday Love Wrap Sandwich and Tomato Soup

Tuesday Tortellini, White Bean and Spinach Soup

Wednesday Greek Shrimp and Couscous

Thursday Slow Cooker Parmesan Sage Pork Loin with Watercress Salad

Friday Macaroni and 4 Cheeses

Saturday Arugula Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Pizza

Sunday Cornish Game Hens with Brown Rice Stuffing

A bit about me...

I love to organize anything! I love to read anything on the subject of organizing. I especially love helping others learn the joy and simplification organizing habits and behaviors can bring to their lives.

Click here to learn a bit about me and visit our websites (organizing services), (training and education for professional organizers) and my book web site

Anne Blumer

Anne Blumer
Certified Professional Organizer, Certified GO System Trainer and Consultant, and Certified FreedomFiler Consultant

Client Before and After Pictures

Certified Professional Organizer

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