I have been working on cleaning up my office … AGAIN. If you have followed my old idogenealogy.net site, most of the “organizing genealogy mess” content still exists on this site. Just click on the “Messy Desk | Office” in the “Genealogy Organization” category found in the footer of every page.
I can actually invite people into my office and not be ashamed of it.
For the first time in YEARS my office is straight. Yes, it is crowded with genealogy “stuff”. But the “stuff” is in boxes, folders, etc. Nothing is sitting in a pile waiting for me to sort through it. When I worked, I rarely left a messy desk at the end of the day. I had a place for everything and that enabled me to quickly clean off my desk at the end of the day. I’ve FINALLY got this in my home office — my genealogy office.
I found that all the work I did several years ago was truly worth it. So was the work I did last year. Even though all the leftover Christmas stuff that had been thrown in…instead of the cleanup taking weeks, even months to get my office straight, I accomplished everything in 6 days. No, it’s bigger than that. I’ve spent time before but never achieved THE END. This time I did. Forgive me while I do my happy dance.
BUT…It’s embarrassing what got buried in my genealogy mess.
» I owe one society who passed on never-would-have-known-it information a donation. Geez!!!
» Data I thought I had passed on to my co-editor but had not. ARGH!
» Junk mail that I MEANT to shred but didn’t.
» Stuff I had made notes on, Xeroxed copies of, etc. I’m beginning to HATE little scraps of paper!
» Stuff I got out and did not put back.
» And of course, all the things that got dumped on my office during Thanksgiving & Christmas.
One Way I Got More Time
One thing I found was a short list from 2014 I made with the title “How To Get More Time”. As I read through it, I found the list actually did help me. Looking back more than a year allows you to see more clearly.
- Play through [my favorite iPhone] Sudoku only one time per day.
- Drop Goodreads’ Giveaways for awhile.
- Only mark stars in Goodreads reviews with very abbreviated reviews or none.
- Stop checking Facebook. Limit to one time a day.
- Drop reading Kindle deal emails.
- Start using a timer.
- Chart my day for where my time is being used.
- Take DOTS (game) off my iPhone.
I never did #7 at all.
I’ve used #6, a timer, for literally YEARS. I needed to remind myself to use it again.
I did #2, #5, #8 completely.
I modified #1, #3, #4 which allowed me to still enjoy these but not lose so much time in them.
For example, I still do reviews on Goodreads. I try to always review 5 star (great) and 1 star (horrible) books. I no longer beat myself up if I don’t get a review done. And I started checking my Facebook via my Kindle. It’s not as “easy” getting into the liked pages & groups which allows me to quickly read but not end up rabbit-holing myself in either. It also takes longer to key in replies so I seldom do it on Facebook when I’m using my Kindle. Probably a good thing. 🙂
My suggestion…try making a list of your own. Here’s some ideas on how to come up with ideas.
- What are you doing that you can stop doing? Are you part of something that takes time on a daily, weekly or monthly basis that used to be fun or you thought it would be fun but now you just dread doing? Time to dump it. No matter WHAT it is. When he hate doing something, we don’t do it to our fullest capability. It hangs over our heads like a giant boulder. It can even start keeping us awake at nights.
When we always keep a position, we are denying others the opportunity to grow.
The fact that is a worthy activity should NOT be part of your decision. The above was told to me when I was feeling SO guilty about dropping something. I had never thought about the fact that because I was STILL in the role actually meant no one else COULD be.
- Identify your three biggest time wasters. Can you quit doing them? Or can you at least find a way to control the amount of time you spend.