Organized Charm
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Sunday, September 25, 2016

What's New at Organized Charm





If you've been following this blog for a while, you may have noticed it's been inactive (or veeery sparsely active) for quite a while. 

If you've just landed here for the first time, welcome! I'm Kirsten!

I just wanted to give y'all a little update about what's been going on in my normal life, Organized Charm, and a few little changes:





First- Why Organized Charm only had 8 posts last year:


So, I've been teaching Kindergarten for as long as I've been writing OC posts. However, last year was a drastic change for me because I switched from private schools to public school. And wow, what a difference it was!

If you are a public school teacher, I definitely applaud you because it was SO MUCH MORE challenging than I could possibly have imagined! The meetings, the class sizes, the testing... The paperwork alone was exhausting!

Additionally, I was working in a low-income, urban environment so my class roster was constantly changing. Due to unstable living environments, I had students coming in and leaving throughout the year with no warning... which also made it a really emotional year.

As a teacher, it's really hard to invest your time and energy your students and then just have them disappear one day. It's also difficult to never really have your routines and procedures in place because new students are coming in every week. 

I learned SO much from my experience but I'll definitely save it for a different post!





On to the part that impacted Organized Charm- 

Our particular school had an extended day (7:45-4:30). I can probably count on one hand the number of days that I left "on time". 

On an early day, I left between 5:30-6:00. On a meeting night, my team stayed until the janitor kicked us out at 8:30. Luckily, I LOVED my teaching team because we spent a lot of time together. 

So, unfortunately, there wasn't really a lot of extra time/energy left for posting on Organized Charm or any of its social media outlets. 

If you have an unanswered comment, email, question, or requested post... I am SO sorry! I am currently working to catch up on them all!




Second- The "updated" version of Organized Charm

Another thing that's been difficult about writing is that... I'm not in college anymore. 

So, writing about college-related things and study tips can be kind of difficult the further and further into non-academic life that I get. But don't worry, I'm always one step away from going back to school... again :) I'll still write about school, of course, but I also need to throw in some more "grown up" stuff to keep OC relevant to my life! 

Even though I'm not regularly writing about school and studying anymore, there is already SO MUCH of that content on Organized Charm that I think it's still a good resource for college students! 

I rounded up all of those posts and put them together under the "Organized College" tab at the top of the page. If that page is a little too overwhelming for you, I also broke those posts down into 3 smaller categories:



If you've been a reader of OC since Day 1, chances are, you're getting pretty close to graduation!


If that's you, then you may want to start checking out the "Organized Career" tab, which will be updated frequently on job search tips, networking, and other fun "grown-up" things! 

I am really excited to say that I finally have my DREAM job in my DREAM school! So, I will definitely be sharing more tips about finding and starting a new job!


Another thing that is different about OC is that I closed my Etsy store and I am no longer accepting sponsorships and/or sponsored blog posts. 


I REALLY appreciate y'all's support of Organized Charm's Etsy store! And for entering the giveaways, checking out the products, etc.

BUT, you've heard that expression "too many irons in the fire"? 

I mean, I've never actually seen an iron in a fire, but I can certainly make up what I think it means. And what I think it means is that, when you try to do too much, you don't really do any of it well

That's kind of how I felt about Etsy. I just didn't have the time to invest what needed to be invested into it. Sponsorships were kind of the same thing. 

I have had the chance to work with some great companies and review some incredible products over the past few years. However, it can be really stressful to keep up with all the deadlines, requirements, etc. that come along with sponsorships. 

I just want OC to be a thing that brings me joy, not another obligation in my already busy life. I am excited to say that I feel like it's fun again! 

Third- Organized Charm around the Social Media Universe


Kind of along the same lines of making blogging fun again, I want to make social media fun again... not another obligation. 

Like everyone, I have platforms that I absolutely love and others that aren't particularly my favorite. So, I've decided that, instead of trying to post everywhere, I'll just post on my favorite platforms and not worry so much about the others!

I tend to be a big fan of platforms that are visual-based because I just want to look at pretty pictures (I mean, who doesn't?)! 




If you're looking for OC's social media accounts that will be used the most frequently, become a follower of these:



If you want to be notified about new posts but not be bombarded with endless photos of my planner and closet organization projects, become a follower of these: 

(Welll... they may still have a few photos of my planner.)






And, of course, you can always follow OC via email/RSS feed by entering your email address in the "Join Our List" box to the right!




You can also still request a post via the Request page! 

Reader requests are my absolute favorite and I am working to queue these posts as quickly as possible! :) 



Thank you SO much!

Thanks for making it to the end of this (lengthy) post!

OC readers are literally the best and I am truly excited to restart this blog and make it more post-grad friendly! :) 


Monday, September 19, 2016

6-Minute Miracle Morning Routine


I've been working on a new morning routine lately. 

I recently went to a Junior League training event on the "6-Minute Miracle Morning". 

This was based on the book The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod, who has a really, really inspiring story! 

The event was super helpful as far as just knowing WHAT to do in the mornings to set yourself up for success! And while brushing your teeth and getting dressed will certainly set you up for success, the 6-minute morning really focused on preparing your mind for the day ahead. 

Hal used the acronym Life "SAVERS" to help us remember the categories. 

Here is what they stand for:

Silence (meditation)- 5-10 minutes of silent meditation each morning. There are plenty of meditation apps out there, if you need help getting through it. However, thanks to the fact that we've pretty much all been to yoga at some point in our lives, this shouldn't seem to crazy. Simply focus on breathing in and out for 5-10 minutes and deflect any distractions!

Affirmations- 10 minutes of repeating affirmations to yourself. The example that the presenter gave was Muhammad Ali. He is almost as famous for his affirmations as he is for his boxing. He told himself that he was the greatest every day... and he became the greatest!

Visualization- 10 minutes of visualizing yourself achieving your goals. I actually just used this to visualize myself having a productive and organized day... but it can also be used for long term goals, too! 

Exercise- 10-20 minutes of exercise. Tone It Up has a morning "Booty Call" on their website and app. These are quick morning workouts that really do boost your energy throughout the entire day!

Reading- 10 minutes of reading. Probably not a Gone Girl-esque novel, but something a little more uplifting, like a book on positivity or a daily devotional. 

Scribing (journaling)- 10 minutes of writing. 

In order to turn this into a 6-minute morning routine, simply shorten the time of each activity to 1 minute! 

I started this routine this morning and, since it was my first day, I spent 5 minutes each instead of 1 or 10. I wanted to make sure I felt like I accomplished a lot, but also got through everything in time to still look decent for work :)

Do you have a morning routine? Or have you ever tried the Morning Miracle? If so, tell me about it in the comment section! 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

How to Make Your Workspace Work for YOU (whatever your job may be)

 


We have a guest blogger today, which I am SO excited about because I know that y'all are going to LOVE this post as much as I did!

We all love to be organized when we work... but most of the posts out there (mine, included) typically focus on how to organize an office workspace. 

But what if you're an artist, sculptor, beekeeper, etc. etc. and you don't JUST need to organize an office, but a whole workshop?! 

Never fear! Jeriann Watkins from dairyairhead.com is here to help you get organized... no matter what your job is! 

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Organizing Your Home Workspace to Meet YOUR Needs

There are countless tips online for organizing a home office, but many of those focus only on computer-centric office spaces.

Organizing a traditional office is one thing, but many entrepreneurs need to build a workspace where they can create products and store inventory and/or supplies.

Below are some different types of home workspaces and how to begin organizing them.



The Traditional Office


(Image Source: Megaprint Office Murals)

The home office can take many forms, but is often a space for tasks involving paperwork. Emails are written. Reports are created. Calls are taken. Tasks that require a computer are completed. 

The most important organizational aspect of a home office is being able to find information. This includes information for customers, as well as information for the IRS and other administrative entities. 

In the image above, you can see how one person added a large design element to their home office without taking away organizational space. By putting a printed map on the ceiling, the owner was able to personalize their space without taking away wall space for shelves and filing cabinets.


Home Office Organization Tips:
  • Filing cabinets are your friend. There’s a reason that they are an office staple. Filing cabinets are one of the best ways to keep papers safe from damage and easy to categorize and find.
  • Establish a filing system. This will save you countless headaches when looking for purchase histories, dealing with audits, or simply tracking client information.
  • Organize digital files. Even if most of your filing is digital, it is best (and sometimes legally required) to keep hard copies as a backup.
  • Think about workflow. If you complete the bulk of work at your computer desk, then organize your office so that the things you use most are easily accessible from the desk.
  •  Build out accordingly. By putting items you use least in draws and shelves further from you, you will keep the area directly around you ready for action! Those papers you only keep for legal purposes? That filing cabinet can go in an inaccessible corner.
  • Keep personal items separate. This is especially important if you’re claiming a tax deduction for your home office space. You can only claim the space if it is only used for business purposes. Keeping your personal items out of your office will also keep the clutter to a minimum and leave space for the work-essential items you need.



The Workshop


If you create products that require power tools, you probably describe your work space as a workshop. Workshops are designed for efficiency in completing tasks, as opposed to efficiency in finding information. 

This means that workshops need enough space to move about safely and complete production of your productsIf your products require the use of power tools, it is likely that the best place for your workshop is a garage-type area. 

The debris from sanders, saws, and other equipment requires regular cleanup to ensure a safe workspace. A concrete floor will be much easier to maintain than a carpeted space. You also may need to consider ventilation if your products require the use of paint or other materials.


Workshop Organization Tips:
  • Think "safety first". When organizing your workshop, make sure there is plenty of space to operate the equipment you use regularly. 
  • Keep specialty equipment in mind. Specialty equipment often requires extra safety precautions. For example, I just bought a miter saw for my craft business. The manual states that in order to ensure safety, the saw must be secured to a worktable. Since I’m cutting through wood, which causes lots of sawdust, I changed my original plan of keeping the saw in my craft room to moving the saw into the garage and building a secure worktable for it. 
  • Add to your workshop over time. As I continue to use more power tools, I will organize my garage further to become an efficient place to work in. 
  • Choose low maintenance storage units. Fabric cube organizers are nice for papers and office supplies, but they’re a bit delicate for storing dirty tools, paints that might leak, and other workshop products. 
  • Consider metal storage lockers. They’re easy to clean, and have long been used for storing cleaning products and other potentially hazardous materials.




The Artist’s Space


Many people are starting their own businesses creating craft and specialty items. With the popularity of sites like Etsy, there are more opportunities than ever to sell handmade products to a wide audience. This means that crafters who organized their craft space for personal use may find themselves with a space that is not optimal for their new craft business. 

Artists and crafters looking to monetize their creativity will need to design a space that works for their specific craft and workflow. For painters, this means storing supplies efficiently, having a comfortable work area, and having a place to safely store completed work. People selling pottery will likely need a larger space to work, and an area where falling clay won’t cause problems. 

Knitters and others who work with textiles need to find efficient ways to store yarn and fabric so that it’s easily sorted through and unlikely to get tangled.


Craft-Space Organization Tips:
  • Look for object-specific storage. If you work with large swathes of fabric, hanging them in a closet may be the easiest way to see all you have at once. If you make centerpieces or other crafts out of bottles, shallow-depth wine racks will allow you to maximize your space.
  • Cut the clutter. With creative workspaces, it’s easy to save items because they have “potential”. Make sure this doesn’t lead to an abundance of clutter.
  • Every quarter, go through your supply inventory. If there are items that seem to be getting in the way, make plans to use them or find a storage solution in the next quarter. If an item remains on your trouble list for multiple quarters, it may be time to discard or donate it.



These are just a couple of tips for organizing different home workspaces. Do you have organization strategies that have worked for you? Share in the comments!




Jeriann Watkins is currently in the process of organizing her very cramped craft room for her farmer’s market booth. You can check out her adventures at dairyairhead.com
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