I’d like to introduce you to Sue Anderson, Certified Professional Organizer, and owner of Simplified Living Solutions.
How We Met:
I first met Sue when we were getting settled into our current house here in Missouri. We had relocated from Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina, and it had been a rough 2 years leading up to our move.
We still had a storage unit in Mississippi, things in storage here, and my former business inventory stored in our basement. I was extremely overwhelmed and my energy was drained knowing I had to deal with all these “things”.
I’d finally had enough, and called Sue after researching local certified organizers. From the moment I met Sue, I felt extremely comfortable and never felt judged for the mess our lives had become. We had some great laughs and at the end of our weekend, I finally felt optimistic again.
I asked Sue to share with you some ways to simplify the holidays. I plan on taking these tips to heart this year, because I’ve finally learned that “simple is better”!
Quick Tips to Simplify the Holidays
· Simplify your holiday to-do list. - List all of the holiday-related tasks that you feel responsible for (e.g., buying gifts, making cards, decorating the house, guests, etc.). Look at the tasks that you don't truly enjoy and ask yourself what tasks you could scale back on, or delegate, to reduce your stress.
· Say goodbye to perfectionism. - A big step in making holidays more manageable is to decide that you are willing to give up on perfection. If you accept that your gathering, or gift, will not look or feel exactly like the picture on the cover of a magazine, you might be able to enjoy it more.
· Slow down and breathe. - Unfortunately, too many of us get trapped in the chaos of shopping, planning, cooking, and cleaning. We speed up so much that we never really slow down long enough to enjoy the season. The heart and soul of the holidays often get lost. This year, focus on what's really important rather than the duties of the season.
· Simplify your shopping with a list. - Rather than just jumping in your car to go shopping, take some time to plan out your route. Begin by deciding what gifts you would like to get for the people on your list. Then transfer the information from that list onto another list of where you will get each item. Once you've done that, map out the simplest, most time effective route to get it all done. Take a healthy snack to keep you going.
· Simplify receipt keeping. - Keep all of your receipts together in an envelope marked Christmas 2010. Using this method will help you quickly locate any receipt you may need, and it will make it very easy to purge the expired and unnecessary receipts later.
· Prepare for next year. - When the holidays are over, take the time to clear enough space somewhere to store all of your holiday decorations together, so you can quickly and easily find them next year. If you use an artificial tree, and space allows, leave the lights on the tree year round. That will cut down on time and stress next year.
Sue Anderson, Simplified Living Solutions
*I encourage you to follow Simplified Living Solutions on Facebook. Sue does daily organizing posts on her page. If you suggest SLS’s FB page to all of your FB friends and then post “I did it” on my wall, you’ll be entered into a contest to win a $20 Target gift card.