So, I’ve told you that I like to set systems for those areas of my life where I tend to do the same actions or activities over and over again. One thing I didn’t mention is that the reason I do this is that I’ve found it opens up a lot of extra free space in my life–on all levels.
Time, Energy, and Emotions.
Why You Need Get Rid of the Sludge
If you never clear up all those little things that keep you from expressing yourself, creating amazing art, doing your best at work, having honest relationships, launching your big ideas then you'll always feel like life is a struggle. You'll be stressed a lot, annoyed at the people around you, and maybe even a big-time complainer.
Now, I'll admit…I used to never ever make time to chill out. I think this has always been my core challenge–even when I was a kid. I had to be reading, playing flute, organizing a talent show, doing something productive.
I couldn't just lay around doing nothing or go through the motions. I was always preparing for the future. Have you ever felt that way?
What Clarity Feels Like
If my bills are on auto-ish, my appointments are all scheduled, I have a specific way to handle all client emails, I do work for some people at only specific times, I have the same people I see every single month and things I do on a regular interval in my business–if all these things are on somewhat auto systems, I tend to create more and feel simply at ease.
Ahhhh….now that feels nice!
But here’s the other kicker, by setting as many parts of my life/biz on auto, I get to plan time blocks for doing rejuvenating activities — like I want to get 2 massages per month or go to 1 yoga classes per week or even going to the farmer’s market a few times per month.
I also get to block off “no scheduling allowed” time for myself using my systems…so even my chill out time is a system (well the anti-system, but you get my point). I can’t leave it up to chance. I can’t be trusted not to book something in a potential rest time.
Tools To Help Me Get The Job Done
Instead of giving you an exercise to clear the clutter, I'm just going to go ahead and tell you what tools I use to get my thoughts/to dos/brainstorms/random outbursts out of my head.
So here is my short list of tools that help me get my s*!t together.
Most of these tools allow me to be wherever I want to be and still have access to my business, other projects, and create whenever the inspiration hits, but also let it go when I need to without the worry that everything will fall apart.
As you will notice some of these I use primarily for business, but to streamline my life I find just as useful for my personal life. I like to simplify and am always encouraging others to use their business tools to manage their personal life too!
Ok without further adieu, here is my productivity crush list:
- Google Apps – gmail, calendar, chat, google reader – You can use google.com too if you are just tracking personal systems. I seriously do use a lot of Google Apps — everything from gmail, calendar, gchat, analytics, and google docs. I love them all – I can use it for random brainstorms, planning, food journaling, the whole she-bang. One of the best things about this is that you can share all of your work inside the apps with other people!
- Physical Wall Calendar – to list out bills due, appointments, and any other random things
- Iphone – I stay on top of email, send photos to family, and have my computer with me at all times.
- Inbox Zero – see the video that Laura Roeder introduced to me – I struggle with this one, because I hate ‘LETTING GO’ of email even…but I’m getting better all the time. And now, when my email boxes are empty, I feel great!
- Paper Planner – Ranging from Filofax to a custom one I pull together.
- Trashbags and the Good Will
Ok, the last one is more of an obvious way to clear out your physical space. So guess what?
That's your To-Do Item this week.
Do you have a tool that you’ve been wondering about, but it’s not on this list?
Leave a comment below…chances are I’ve tried it! And If I haven’t, I’ll jump right on it for you to get the details and see if it’s worth it for you to use.
Here’s to clearing more space and freedom in your life…and experiencing more moments of <insert sigh here>!
Spend the next 30 days with me clearing space in your life so you can do your best work and live your best life – check out my White Space Solution guidebook.