Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Saying “No” to Others Lets You Say “Yes” to You

Dorothy The Organizer provides weekly tips to unclutter life and work. With her permission, I wanted to share what she sent me recently. –Andrea Michaels

Operation Take Control
How do you stop the overwhelming madness? When you are having an overwhelming moment, situation or event, you must stop and regroup. Delete things from your daily calendar that are not a priority.

When my clients tell me that they feel so overwhelmed, I look at them and say “show me your calendar.” I look at it and say, “Tell me, what you can delete from your day?” Clients look at me horrified because we don’t look at life that way. In life we have a “to do” list not a “to don’t” list – in other words, so what would life look like if you asked yourself, “What can I delete from my list?” Look, something is not going to get done anyway. Now is the time to tell the brutal truth. Stick to the priorities and start saying “no” to what is not critical.

What Is the One Thing I Need to get Done Today No Matter What?
Ask yourself, “What is the single most important thing I need to accomplish today?

If your focus is on at least the one thing that has to get done no matter what, everything else seems to fall into place. When your commitment is that one important task, I guarantee you will get so much more done. This will also give you a sense of satisfaction and you will feel better about yourself at the end of the day.

Saying “No” to Others Lets You Say “Yes” to You!
It is my belief that overwhelm can stem from our inability to say “no” to requests (from others and to our less responsible selves). If you would like to reduce the “O” Factor (overwhelm, over tired, overeating, overspending, over committed) in your life, consider saying “no” to others.

Benefits of Saying “No”
Saying no is the source to help resist temptation
Saying no keeps you from the burden and backlash of over committing
Saying no protects you,  your family, and your health
Saying no provides the time needed for what matters most in your life
Saying no preserves energy levels for top priorities
Saying no makes room for other opportunities you didn't even know were available
Saying no permits you to take charge of your schedule and enjoy a sense of accomplishment

·   Watch Dorothy’s video on how to put yourself first:

It’s Okay to Have a Dump Zone

Do you have a dump zone in your home or does your entire home become a dump zone? Listen, if you are the type of person who likes to drop things on a table the minute you walk in, then let’s accommodate that behavior. Rather than let it pile up on the couch or dining room table, consider hanging some hooks for your dry cleaning and briefcase, or a small table for your mail and backpack. Create the space to accommodate your natural behavior.

Are You Constantly Looking for Your Keys?
Maintain one spot for all keys in the house and put them in the same place every time. It may be helpful to label all the keys for your household such as “garage,” “pool gate,” “van.” Also, if you consider color coding your keys, it can make them much easier to find when you’re rushing about – you can do this with varying nail polish colors. You can also use a hook for your keys or a pretty bowl near your front door. At the very least, find a nail or two and tap the nails in the wall near your door. Hang your keys. Boom – organized.

For more information on Dorothy’s Curb The Chaos, visit If there is a topic or issue you would like covered in a future enewletter or Curb The Chaos Question and Answer Webinar, email

Andrea Michaels is founder and president of Extraordinary Events, a multi-award-winning international event agency based in Los Angeles. Andrea is the author of Reflections of a Successful Wallflower: Lessons in Business; Lessons in Life and an in-demand speaker and leading voice in the special events industry. She may be reached via

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