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Organizing My Day (In the Office)

On this blog, we often talk about organizing space and things.  From a project as simple as a junk drawer that provides a little calm in the chaotic kitchen, to a closet re-do that helps you get dressed easier in the morning, the feeling of being organized is definitely empowering.

The folks in the office often joke about how I am organized to a fault.  I do admit, I do have a little bit of a compulsion in this area and love having a place for everything!

However, one thing I do poorly at is organize my time. 

One example is in the office.  

I am an email junkie.  Self-confessed.  Case in point for the madness:
–When I am working on a project and I see the envelope pop up at the bottom of the screen, I immediately go check Outlook to see if the email is urgent
–I carry my blackberry around all day long, keeping tabs on the newest messages that come in. I am ashamed to admit I sometimes do this in meetings while other people are talking which is a really bad habit. 
–I sometimes have a hard time getting through my actual work to-do list because I am constantly answering emails throughout the day that pop up.

I have read a lot lately about the psychology around multi-tasking.  We have learned to be such great multi-taskers in todays' time, but are we more productive?  Many sources (see interesting article from AMA) say that actually doing too many things at once is counter-productive and then it actually takes more time to get all the items accomplished. 

My morning routine is generally to go through my email first thing in the morning.    On average, I usually receive 100 emails between 5:30pm and 8am, so the average time to plow through the pile is 1 hour.

This morning, I decided to try something different.   I had a hot project that needed attention so I decided not to open Outlook until it was done.   It only took me a half hour to do my project, and I felt remarkably good.  I started my day with the first thing crossed off my to-do list before I opened Outlook.

As this relates to organizing my day, this month of June I am going to try to be conscientous of focusing on one thing at a time to see if this "organization of time" gives me the same empowering feeling that "organization of space" does.  I'll let @rubbermaid (Jim) and @rubbermaiderin (Erin)  give me a scorecard at the end of the month.

As I start this personal challenge, do you have any advice with how you either FOCUS or MANAGE EMAIL that can help me in this endeavor?

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5 Responses to Organizing My Day (In the Office)

  1. Eleanore October 15, 2016 at 6:34 am #

    Thanks – Enjoyed this blog post, how can I make is so that I get an update sent in an email whenever you write a fresh post?

  2. Charles October 6, 2016 at 7:52 am #

    It is the best time to make a few plans for the longer term and it’s time to be happy. I have read this put up and if I may I desire to suggest you some fascinating things or suggestions. Perhaps you can write next articles relating to this article. I wish to read even more things about it!

  3. kierra daniels December 13, 2010 at 7:54 pm #

    thank you the Rubbermaid company you all really helped me with my scoence fair projest my question was Which Type of Insulation Holds Heat the Best? it took me a while to get my answer but it worked out well

  4. Ellen Delap June 9, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    Yes, great starts to a day start with doing one big thing first. Especially if you are a morning energy person, get one thing done in a 50 minute power period and then go back to 2 email. I use a “triage” email method. Scan and delete, go back and answer. It makes me feel productive, and follow my decluttering methods that work for me. I feel more in control after I delete the junk first!
    Happy organizing!

  5. Melonie B June 8, 2010 at 12:09 am #

    It might sound funny but I found using an egg timer really works well to limit my time. Setting up files and moving emails into catagories is easiest for managing files. As I go thru, I drop each into the catagories: urgent, semi-important, adversiting, personal and so on. What’s left is the trash to throw away and the good stuff is organized and managable for future reference.

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