28. 12. 2015Author: Alexandra John
As a married woman entrepreneur, probably a mom too, you must already have so many things in your life that you are trying to juggle. In such a scenario, if you find yourself always busy and never feeling that you have achieved all you planned to achieve in a day, the best thing you can do for yourself is unclutter your life and bring simplicity.
Women entrepreneurs mostly suffer from the dilemma of trying to achieve work-life balance so they can take care of their business as well as their homes and families. Distractions are everywhere, at home and at work. We have developed the habit of filling our lives with excessive things, stuff that we may not require, but extra stuff is there, distracting us and wasting our productive time.
The idea of living a simplified life, with only a handful of meaningful activities sounds attractive to women entrepreneurs; the idea however may seem not possible to many women entrepreneurs. Here are a few tips of how women entrepreneurs can achieve better work life balance and live a harmonious life by uncluttering it:
1. Start with One
Too often, when we look at our office desks or our bedroom closet, we get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff to clear out – so we never start! Pick a room, a space, a stack of files, a list of projects, a file cabinet, a table – a small area to start off with. Slow and steady wins it - each day you can tackle a small area and cleanse it off of anything extra.
2. Dedicate 5 Minutes Per day
Another turn off in the way of de-cluttering efforts is trying to find enough time to do so. You keep putting it off for the weekend or a day off for work. There is no need to dedicate an entire day or week for de-cluttering, just dedicate 5 minutes every day, as suggested by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits. As a woman entrepreneur who is always busy with work or taking care of family, you should start clearing out the mess from your office or your room by spending 5 minutes every day and soon you will have a clutter free space!
3. The Oprah Winfrey Closet Hanger Experiment
Oprah Winfrey has suggested a great way to clear out your closet and get rid of unused clothes – clothes you feel you need and therefore do not get rid of but in reality you rarely use. According to the experiment, you need to hang your clothes facing backward, and re-hang clothes you wear facing forward. At the end of six months, clothes that are still facing backwards are the ones you need to get rid of because you have not used them for that long!
4. Pass it On
Every day, take one thing that you do not really use from your office and/or your home to pass on to someone else who you feel needs it. For example, give your sister the scarf she loves and you rarely use. If you have extra file covers, give them to your employees so they can use them.
5. All Out Clearance
Clear your office table and drawers and put everything on the ground. Clean your table and start putting things back in their proper place. Remove anything that does not belong or have a place on your office desk or in your drawers. Find a place in your office for the remaining things. Things that are still left are the ones you do not need.
Do the same with your furniture and get rid of items that you do not need.
6. Store Items in a Store
If you are facing issues in letting go of extra stuff just place them in a box and put them in a store. After six months revisit the box; seeing stuff you did not use will make you realize that you can spend your life without these things. Once you realize the reality, it will be easier for you to give this stuff away because you have practically lived without these things for six months!
Giving extra stuff away gets easier and feels better if you donate it to a good cause. Pack up the stuff, find a relevant charity and donate to it. You may even find a charity where you can donate regularly, which will become your regular source of de-cluttering your life and your emotions as well!
8. Delay your Purchases
The best way to live a clutter free life is to not buy extra stuff in the first place! Sounds simple but when we are out on a shopping spree we tend to leave logic behind and make a bunch of purchases that are more of luxuries than necessities. One of the ways you can try to resist shopping temptation is to make a list of things you desire to buy (things that are luxuries rather than necessities) and put a date against each item.
You will lose the desire for buying a number of things on that list after 30 days; you can consider buying things that survive the 30-day period.
9. Do not Procrastinate Organization
Once you are done using any item in your office or your home, make sure you put it back in its proper place – same rule with new purchases and new additions. The moment you cannot find a place for something should trigger an alarm in your mind and you should re-consider whether you really need that item or not.
Make sure you teach the same to your kids and ask them to put everything back in its place. It is one of the sure shot ways to identify whether the thing belongs with you or not!
10. Keep Moving Files
Whatever document you receive in your office, take action on it until it is disposed off. For every piece of paper, decide whether you need to send it forward, file it, throw it in the trash, or put in the ‘action’ pile. Keep reviewing your action pile; if there is anything lying there for more than one week’s time, it needs to move – either it needs to be filed, forwarded or put in the trash bin.
Free your space – free your mind – free your life! Get rid of extra stuff and make your life as a woman entrepreneur a little less complicated. Once you start enjoying an un-cluttered life, you will feel that you have become better as a woman entrepreneur and will find yourself less distracted, more productive and a lot happier – at work and at home!
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