One of the cool things about my job is that we get a certain amount of money to spend each year on professional development.  I usually forget about this fund until the end of the year and then based on I want to accomplish the following year, I buy books.  This will come as no surprise to you all that I went for books that focused on efficiency and making work easier.  Note that it usually takes me most of the year to read the three or four books and I try to take away the things that will have the biggest impact on my life and work.

I’m currently reading “The Personal Efficiency Program” and oh man has it made an impact on how I work and the stress of having a backlog of work.  The general idea is to just do it now.  In general, you shouldn’t start something unless you’re going to do it now and finish it (well as much as you can finish without needing to follow up, etc).  I have applied this to my email at work and it has made such a difference!  I outlined other backlogs that I had at work and I’ve carved out time this coming week to get them all caught up.  I can’t tell you how much more productive you can be without having the stress of other backlogs taking your attention.  It’s amazing!  The biggest impact has been that I’m only processing each email once.  Fantastic!  I only have 20 emails in my In Box now and I am simply waiting on follow ups from others before I act on them.

Then it dawned on me yesterday that I could easily apply this at home as well.  What are piles of laundry other than a backlog of laundry?  The dishes in the kitchen – same as emails waiting to be processed.  We obviously have other bigger projects going on with the house (hello kitchen remodeling), but that doesn’t mean we can’t clear out some of the other backlogs before we get to projects in those rooms.  So, I asked Eric – where should we start?  And we decided upon the bedroom. 

Our bedroom is one of the rooms that we do spend quite a bit of time in obviously, but since we can always shut the door when company comes, it’s not high on the list for cleaning.  The floor is *was* literally covered with clothes.  Part of the problem is also that I can honestly say I wear about 20% of the clothes I have.  Now some of them are being saved for when I finally lose this baby weight, but still…  So today, I went through all my clothes.  Decided on what to keep that I can wear now and what to keep that I hope to wear later.  I also went through my shoes.  I must admit to being an illogical shoe collector/wearer or at least I was in the past.  I mean really, who needs stiletto red plaid shoes that hurt to wear and pinch your toes?  If motherhood has changed anything about me, it’s made me a sensible shoe wearer. So I’m saying goodbye to most of my silly shoes.  Some exceptions being that I just can’t get rid of my pink shaggy fur boots, but they’re not high heels and are comfy, just impractical.  I’ve decided that when I need a new pair of work shoes, I will go for comfort, style and quality.  I must admit that most of my shoes were not high quality just ridiculous.  So I carried boxes upon boxes of shoes to the basement to put in the yard sale pile.  Now it’s time to get through all the laundry and actually put it away. 

I’m feeling better already!



Filed under Chaos, inspiration, working mom

2 responses to “Backlogs

  1. bernadette hoyt

    i’m speechless…i need to read this book…wow!!! and i want to come to your yard sale…so do post the date!

  2. Naturalizer’s are working mother’s friends:) So proud of you and so agree and need to work on this as well! Thanks for passing on the info so I don’t have to read the

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