Physical clutter can damage your health. In a study done by the University of California Los Angeles, women who described their houses as cluttered, disorganized, disordered, or haphazard had daily patterns of the stress hormone cortisol that are normally associated with post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic fatigue, and early mortality. These women were also more likely to feel depressed.
If you’ve ever spent a morning trying to track down a lost file on your hard drive or searching through a decade of email, you know that digital disorder can also take a toll on your wellbeing. Most people handle a constant flow of text messages, emails, photos, videos, and other digital information. When all that digital data piles up, it can slow you and your devices down. Keep reading for a step-by-step guide to downsizing and organizing your digital clutter.
Keep reading more from Abby Quillen, as she shares how to organize digital clutter, including automating processes and organizing your digital past.
Even in the land of ten thousand lakes where water abounds, many of us appreciate the serenity of garden water fountains - and as fall approaches - these need our cleaning attention, too. Thank you to Sally Perkins, busy mom and homeowner, who is sharing her tips for cleaning those outdoor fountains.
Tips for a Clean Fountain
A fountain makes for a beautiful and eye-catching centerpiece for any back yard or large garden. Although it may be running on water, it still requires regular maintenance to ensure it is free from buildup and mold. Your fountain will run better with a little care and attention, so getting in a professional to clean it regularly may also be of benefit. If you're ready to do this on your own, grab the following items before tackling the cleaning:
Guest Post by Suzie Kolber
Appropriate Ways to Offer Condolences in the Workplace
You only know Jane to talk to her in the hall between your offices. You may send her an email occasionally about a job-related question or say “hello” in a company-wide meeting once a month. Just last week you heard her father died and you’re scheduled to have a meeting with her in a few days. You’re already feeling uncomfortable because you’re not sure what to say or how to act with someone who just suffered a loss.
Should you bring up the subject at all? Should you offer condolences? Should you get a card or buy flowers? Dealing with such a serious subject with a co-worker can be complicated.
Consider Your Relationship
If you only see Jane in passing and never have one-on-one conversations with her, it’s perfectly acceptable to not make mention of the situation at all. In fact, it may make her feel just as awkward as you. She doesn’t know you well and may not feel comfortable discussing such a personal subject.
On the other hand, if the co-worker is someone you know well and eat lunch with or have regular meetings, you should broach the subject at an appropriate time. Avoiding it will be all too obvious, and it may make it awkward for both of you to talk to each other.
Consider the Situation
If you won’t see the person other than passing in the hall for a few weeks, it may be fine not to bring up the topic. However, if you are scheduled to have a meeting with them a week after the funeral, you may want to offer quick condolences. It could be a simple “How are you doing?” which the person will understand the underlying meaning.
If you arrive at the meeting early, you could say something short and sincere like “I heard about your dad, and I just want to say I’m sorry.” That’s it. No need to say more, but Jane will appreciate your thoughtfulness.
Consider the Method of Offering Condolences
You probably don’t want to talk about the person’s loss in a group situation. If you never talk to the person alone, it’s probably best not to bring up the loved one’s death. On the other hand, you will want to say something if you see them in an individual situation.
One of the best ways to offer condolences in a work environment is to send an email. You don’t have to make a big deal about it, but offer a few words to show your support and to let them know you are aware of their situation. Keep it short and to the point. You may say something like the following:
Suzie Kolber is a writer at obituaries.org, a complete guide for someone seeking help for writing words of condolences, sympathy messages, condolence letters and funeral planning resources.
You've heard me talk before about weeding through the closets and files to simplify and prioritize. Maybe you have way more shoes than nooks and crannies to hide them. Perhaps the craft supply closet is turning into a guest bedroom for scrapbook paper and yarn.
Today, however, we're talking about setting priorities in the kitchen. How many times have you thrown out food from the fridge? Do you grocery shop with a purpose - a list - or just throw random ingredients into the cart, hoping a menu will magically materialize each evening?
Beth Moncel of Budget Byte$ reminds us that our efforts should not stop at the shoe rack or craft closet. We need to think more purposefully about what we're putting in our cart and making for our plates. But we also need to take it a step further and think about the empty plates that exist across the country (and the world), and Moncel shares more about Feeding America - and how it can help us clarify our food priorities while doing some good.
I’m so impressed with the multi-faceted approach that Feeding America takes to reduce food waste, while putting nutritious meals on the table for millions of Americans.
Volunteer – Even if you don’t have any dollars to give, you can still make a difference! Volunteer work is a crucial piece of the puzzle. Volunteering offers the added benefit of helping you connect on a personal level with people in your community—something that is becoming more and more difficult to do in our digital society.
Keep reading more from Beth Moncel, including her thoughts on sticking to a grocery budget while still making some amazing meals, and some of her favorite recipes!
Today I'm excited to share a Guest Post by Kelly Jo Zellmann, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in Bemidji, MN. She is helping us look at our health goals and get on track to healthier days!
Are you ready to organize your health and prioritize your goals?
Now that the New Year has settled in, have you checked on how you are doing with your resolutions? Many of us start the year by setting some sort of goals or intentions with the number one goal of weight loss or to eat healthier. However, according to research, the percent of people who actually achieve their goals is less than 10%.
As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in Bemidji, MN I am offering a virtual “March to Memorial Day” 12-week healthy lifestyle program. Through this program, you will receive personalized one-on-one support for nutrition and healthy eating, plus individualized goals to help you successfully get on the right track (and stay there) to achieve your nutrition and wellness goals. The program includes one initial consultation, six follow-up coaching sessions (bi-weekly), and weekly nutrition and exercise check-ins, with unlimited messaging, food and fitness tracking online, all done via phone and/or Skype.
Together, we will discover your motivation for change, help prioritize your goals, and keep you accountable. This program can fit into an already busy lifestyle without having to leave your home or office for appointments and work on your goals all at your own pace, one step at a time.
One of the keys to being successful at making any new lifestyle change is patience and not giving up. In the end, it’s about prioritizing your health to be at the top of your to-do list. Once you have the habits in place you will be well on your way to optimizing your health!
Contact me if you want to start organizing your health today! email@example.com
“But do you mind if I keep that one? And this one? I know attachment leads to suffering– oh, it does; it really does lead to suffering. I know that. I know it. But I’m not quite ready to let them go just yet.” Every time she smiles, her eyes water and crinkle to the point of almost disappearing, sparkling all the more.
Keep reading more from the blog Filling Your Niche to learn how our attachments can lead to our sufferings, if we let them.
Sometimes one foot is all you can lift. Toward what? Doesn't matter. The motion itself is the answer. It may be the only answer you have for all those big horrible questions.
Probably, yes, to all. But stasis . . . stasis is the wrong answer.
Keep reading more from Cinderella, Dressed in Yella, and her response to my blog post last week where I talked about the NWA approach - No Wrong Answer. She's right. If our answer is Zero. Nada. Zip. Zlich. Then we aren't really answering at all. And we can do better than nothing.
A guest blog post about finding beauty in funeral planning
We plan vacations, weddings, and for graduation parties. Such fun and memorable events that the planning can be half the fun. But sometimes there are those events that need the same kind of "planning attention", but we don't look forward to them as much. Today I'm sharing a guest post written by Tricia Andrews of Chickadee Ceremonies, which reminds us that we can take the same kind of positive energy we have for planning a birthday party and use it for planning life-marking events such as memorials and funerals. And we can also find a new kind of joy in planning for these moments in all of our lives. - Tammy
Guest Post by Tricia Andrews
Not necessarily a fun thing to think about, but we find that planning a memorial service is actually a positive and life affirming endeavor. As co-owners of Chickadee Ceremonies, we specialize in customized and unique weddings that reflect your values and experiences. We bring this same care and respect to the task of developing end-of-life ceremonies.
Looking to a new year, it might be time to consider what your own funeral would be like. It can even be a wonderful opportunity to reflect on what is most meaningful to you, allowing your family and friends to honor who you are and what matters to you. A great article to get you started is at https://www.everplans.com/articles/reasons-to-plan-your-own-funeral-or-memorial-service. In the spirit of Tammy’s business motto, “don’t leave a mess” for someone else to deal with when you are gone. Give the gift of peace of mind to yourself and those you love. Chickadee Ceremonies believes that all stages of life can be filled with moments of grace, beauty and humor, and we’d be honored to help by working with you to plan a complete service and even officiating when the time comes. Check us out on Facebook or www.chickadeeceremonies.com, or contact us at Chickadee.Ceremonies@gmail.com.
Tricia Andrews and Terry Anderson
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Tammy Schotzko is a Certified Professional Organizer who