It’s Time to LAUNCH into a More Organized Life!

Did you know that the average American spends nearly an hour every day looking for simple things? How sad! Think what YOU would do with an extra hour every day. It may seem like an inflated estimate, but let’s think it through a bit.

What do you typically spend your precious time searching for? Keys? Wallet? Shoes? Library books? School papers? Important documents? Tools? The list goes on.

Much of what we spend our time searching for includes items we need in order to get out the door. And isn’t that the most frustrating time to be searching? I’m sure you can picture it:

  • The bus will be in front of the house in 3 minutes, but first your sweet child needs to find their jacket and shoes, signed permission slip, gym uniform, lunch and library books. Chances are you just wasted 5-10 minutes searching along with 15-30 minutes in drive time, shuttling them to school because they missed their bus.
  • Your husband is getting ready to leave for work, but where are his keys, brief case, lunch and black belt? Just a few minutes late, and he’s more likely to be stuck in rush hour traffic. Precious minutes wasted in his day before it even begins.
  • You are ready to leave for a meeting, and had planned to run errands on the way home. You are now frantically searching for your brief case, the black pumps you wore Saturday night,  your grocery list and the library books that are due today. You run out of time, give up on finding the grocery list and library books, and head for the meeting, arriving just in time. Consequently, you add 30 minutes to your day having to run back by the house after work to retrieve your grocery list and library books.

Ok, now that you can relate to the problem, what is the solution? Part of the solution is the creation of a “Launching Pad”. It’s a place within your home that you designate as THE place to put anything you will need as you leave your home. It can include your keys and purse, library books to be returned, and the little neighbor’s  sweat shirt that was left at your home last week. Also, items such as your grocery list and errand plan, store returns and your PTA file needed for the next meeting.  You get the picture.

You tend to have a “Launching Pad”, whether you consciously plan to or not. Without a plan, your Launching Pad tends to be your kitchen counter or table, again adding to your kitchen clutter. So take a few minutes and think through a logical place for your launching pad, preferably near the door that you normally use. You could designate a kitchen cabinet near your “Quick Access Files”. Or you could designate a shelf in the laundry room, if it happens to be near the door. Be creative and look around your house for space that is available and makes sense.

This same concept works beautifully for your children. Create a place for them to keep their coats, shoes, backpacks and anything else that they may need as they walk out the door for school. This space could include hooks for coats, cubbies for shoes and larger cubbies for backpacks.

Hooks and Shoe Cubbies

Hooks and Shoe Cubbies

We actually have a small “Launching Room” in our home, with space for our children’s as well as our own coats, shoes, backpacks and other items coming and going out of our home. We were able to customize this space with labels for coat hooks and cubbies for each child. This both simplifies and organizes, saving many minutes and ultimately hours of search time.

Cubbies for the Kids

Cubbies for the Kids

In my previous post, I recommended creating “Quick Access Files” which will enable you to quickly find all those bits of information that you need often. The Launching Pad perfectly compliments the Quick Access Files!

Later this month we will look at creating a simple, yet effective long term filing system. If you can’t find any document within a minute’s time, your filing system is not as effective as it could be. Having an easy and effective long term filing system is yet another time saver.

Have Happy and Organized Days!

Cheryl

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