Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A new favorite activity! A time saver too!!!!

As a busy mother of three I really love finding things that make my life run smoothly and optimise my time. Well today I have discovered just one of those things. now I am likely to be behind many others on this discovery, however I am going to share anyway.
At the moment I am sitting at a desk by a large window overlooking a leafy garden, I have my two boys by my side and we are all heads down working. We are at the Library. Now I am a rare visitor of libraries so this was an idea that came to me through necessity. My youngest son is playing field hockey this afternoon after school. I collect the boys at 3.30pm and Hockey is at 5.30pm. It takes me 30 minutes to drive home from school on a good day, and then 40 minutes to get back across town to the hockey fields. So today I collected the boys from school, got some afternoon tea and headed for the nearest library. we are midway between School and Hockey (home is across town) and we are getting things done.
The boys are busy working on today's Prep (homework) and I have checked my emails and am doing a blog entry, I will have a look around my fav sites and add some to my new website that I am building.
It is one of the most relaxing, peaceful and enjoyable hours of wok I have done in a long time. Occasionally I am interrupted with a small question from one of the boys and they are both getting homework done in a lovely environment. I have saved over 1 hours driving and petrol usage and we will be at hockey in plenty of time to have Ben warmed up and ready to go.
I think I have to declare this one of my new favourite activities and each Tuesday during the field hockey season you will find me and my boys having some relaxing, quality but productive time at the local library.
This is a challenge for you to see how you can combine activities and multitask in a simple, easy and relaxed way that will give you great pleasure and productivity as well.
Have a fab day.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Intergrity, what is it? Do you have it?

There are many times in our lives that we are put into challenging situations and wonder if the way we are handling it is the best and most honorable way. I have had a few of those situations crop up in many aspects of my professional life over the past six months and this has lead me to look at these situations and ask. Have I acted with Integrity?
Integrity to me is one of the values I hold with the highest regard, and fail to understand when I see others act in a less than honorable way. For me I want to be held to account for my integrity and always endeavour to act in a way that will leave me with no doubt that I have done my best and most honorably in any given situation.
However recently I have been witness to some strange and in my view dishonorable acts that truly leave me wondering how some people can look in the mirror. 

* Recently I did some work from afar to try and rustle up some support for the Victorian Bushfire victims. This resulted in me personally being attacked by someone who felt that I had neglected another group. Talk about a case of damned if you do damned if you don't. I cannot understand or fathom, why someone would take the time to write to me and attack me for doing what was a purely voluntary thing that offered me absolutely no person gain. Would this person have been better of to offer me some ideas to share that would assist this other group, rather than dis me because I did not have such information to pass on?

* There is quiet alot of stuff around my industry relating to plagiarism and misrepresentation. Unfortunately some feel it is OK to cut and paste information from other websites and try and claim them as their own. I have seen some instances where people have been approached about this and rectified the issue immediately with an apology as well. 
Also though I have seen some people being accused of doing this type of this when clearly there is no plagiarism or breach of copyright. Yet there have threats of intimidation and bullying based on unfounded accusations. When the bully was looked at more closely it seems that they themselves could be seen as guilty of misrepresenting themselves to the detriment of others. Yet when approached about this they deny and think it is OK for to continue to do what they have always done, despite it being a bend of the truth. 
Would these people all not be better off to represent themselves in an honest manner, not inflate qualifications and titles, and only use their own materials in any materials they have? I just do not get it!

* Attacking colleagues, competitors and clients!!!! Oh yes this is rife. I am gobsmacked at how many people spend good time and energy on witch hunts trying to catch others out. There are some people who I wonder if they are so low on business all they do it trawl the Internet looking for someone to attack. Here's a tip. You would be far better of spending your time looking for new clients, new innovations or maybe a new job. Turn that negative energy around and use it for building your business, self esteem and credibility.

This may seem like a negative blog post but it has been playing on my mind for some time now and I feel relieved to have put it on paper. So to end on a positive note, here is a list of the ways I like to operate with integrity: (feel free to use these as well)

* Always look for a win win in any situation or dealing.
* Spend my time and energy worrying about how I can build my business, not kick others down.
* Give of myself, either with time or information to help others become better in whatever they chose in life.
* Keep on learning, "Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful - Samuel Johnson"
* Be honest in all my dealings.
* People I deal with will always know where I stand, I chose not to have hidden agendas.
* I avoid dealings with people who have a negative impact on me or my business.

I would love it if you my readers took a little time to add to this list, by sharing what actions you take every day to live with integrity.
Keep smiling and have a great one....

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Cost Effective and Practical for kids!

My regular readers will know that I very rarely invest in storage products etc, until I am really sure that I or a clients have not already go what is required on hand.
So in the last few days we are getting down to the end of a big renovation here at home. Both my boys have moved into their own bedrooms. What a relief it is. They had literally taken over the house during the renovation as there was nowhere for them to store their stuff.
I had done a big declutter before we commenced the renovation project. So thankfully only had a few boxes in odd places throughout the living, dining and hall area.
I must admit it certainly did not look like the home of a Professional Organiser for a while there. Well that is changing and order is slowly being restored.
During the process of returning the boys to their own rooms (for the first time ever) I came across a gem of a storage product that I want to share. They are called iCube.

I bought my stash at "Plastic Box" here in Christchurch. I was thrilled as there seems to be a major lack of decent storage and organising products available in New Zealand. So I got busy and bought enough for both boys rooms. Despite the packaging tempting me with all difference colours to jazz up the boxes. Here in NZ it is only Black or White, with colour in the inserts of blue or wicker or grey. OH please just because I live in New Zealand does not mean I do not want a better selection..........So aside for having a limited choice of colours I went ahead and got what I needed.
For those of you not in the range of a "Plastic Box" store, try "A Cherry on Top"
I have used these in the boys room to store toys, balls, games and books and they are great. I will send a pic of the real deal in the boys rooms when my camera decides to start working again after a close encounter with an Orca at Christmas, but that is a whole other story.
These would be great for kids rooms, scrap booking, craft supplies and even camping as they are customisable to your specific needs.
So this is indeed one of those rare times I will do a product recommendation, because this one really serves it's purpose and can be made to suit your specific needs. Just remember do the organising before you purchase the product, that way you know you are buying what you really need.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Devastation in Australia

As an Aussie who is living in New Zealand, my heart is truly breaking for all those effected in what must surely be one of the most tragic weeks in Australia.
Victoria has been dealt deadly bushfire's that have killed over 170
 (the toll is rising) and in Queensland they are struck by flooding and drought. What a temperamental country Australia is. Beautiful but deadly as well.
In Victoria entire towns and a huge percentage of the populations of those towns have been completely wiped out by the fires. Approx 800 homes have burnt to the ground. For up to date figure and info CLICK HERE
In Queensland there are floods that are also taking lives and making this another disaster zone. For more inofmration CLICK HERE
As a Professional Organiser my thoughts have immediatly gone to what people can do to help in some way. The most immediate things that are needed are clothing and food. Lifes essentials that have been lost by so many.
If you or someone you know is in Victoria and can help, the radio stations are broadcasting where donations can be dropped off. I am listening to 3AW while working here in Christchurch, and they are broadcasting services that are available and where donations can be left. A fellow PO, Lysa Wheelen from Presenting Homes has advised me that there is a warehouse putting together relief parcels at Lot 7 Henderson Road, Rowville 0409 944 220 (Andrew), 8 -5 every day this week. Items can also be dropped at Unit 48, 1508 Centre Road, Clayton. Thanks to LINFOX transport for supplying the distribution centre. If you do donate items ensure the packages are well labelled so they can get to where they are needed.
As the President of AAPO I have put a call out to all our members to help where they can with time, donations and encouraging clients to donate items. This is a time when we all need to band together to make a difference.
I invite you to comment here with any suggestions as to how people can help and lets help where we can regardless of where we are in the world.