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Top Ten Organizing and Time Challenges People Face Part 7

By: Janet L. Hall

1. Paper. Includes mail, reading material and files
2. Bedroom. Includes laundry, clothes, drawers and closets
3. Children. Includes their schedules and their bedroom and toys
4. Shopping. Includes food, gifts and cards
5. Kitchen. Includes organizing, meal planning and cooking
6. Spending time with family, children, friends and self
7. Appointments. Includes medical, school, parties and events
8. Tools
9. Car
10. Maintaining home systems and cleaning

Today we'll be addressing the number seven challenge, appointments:

As you awake in the morning, your mind races ahead of your body with all kinds of stuff pouring in and out. All your thoughts, ideas, chores, appointments and worries that you might have. No wonder you’re tired before your feet even hit the ground.

Before you realize it, you’re up and running here, running there, going through your morning, unaware of how you even apply the toothpaste on your brush or what body parts you wash first. All the while, stuff is pouring into your head from everywhere: ideas, chores, appointments, commitments, relationships, conversations, past events, the future. This self-talk, we all have it. Random thoughts: worries, fears, negativity, frustration, happiness, joy, freedom, inspiration, and light bulb ideas.

Many times your appointments, whether with yourself or someone else, get in the way of your daily routine, especially if it's an unexpected appointment and you had other plans.

Medical Appointments:

Let's start out with some common appointments we all have, such as yearly check ups with the doctor, dentist, vision, hearing and vet if you have a pet.

Get out your calendar for this year or next and call the above and see if you can schedule yours, others in your family, loved ones and the pets appointments. If you have a family see if you can get family appointments, in which each member goes on the same day with times back to back. If you have more then one pet see if you can get appointments for all your pets on the same day with times back to back.

School Appointments:

If you have children going to school, ask the school or teacher for the years calendar of events, teacher/parent meetings and PTA meetings. Put on your calendar the events and meetings you are interested in attending.

Personal Appointments:

Personal growth appointments or meetings could entail going to the gym, seeing a nutritionist, attending workshops of interest at your local shops, or attending conferences. If you are working with someone, such as a trainer, see if you can set up your appointments on the same day and time each week or month. Contact your local shops and/or conference places or industry you are in and see if they have a yearly or quarterly events schedule available so you can plan for those events that interest you.

Consultants Appointments:

If you're a consultant, such as myself, you must be flexible as you never know when someone will need your services and on what days and times. What my business tasks are and works for me is the following, knowing I might have a client call and being flexible for them:

This schedule has worked well for me in the past year and when a client calls, I go, no matter what the day.

Taking Appointments:

For those of you in business in which patients or clients call in to make appointments you might want to check out some Internet based appointment schedulers. This frees up some time for your receptionist or you and also is helpful and convenient to many of your clients. I found two services on the Internet for you to check out at  and

Business Meetings:

Business meetings, whether by phone or in person, can also be set up for the same day and time quarterly or yearly. This not only helps you yet others that are involved.

If you are asked to attend a meeting ask the following to help you decide if your attendance is really necessary:

Often times you might find that you can send someone in your place, send the information, or only attend at the time of the meeting when your input is needed. This would depend on the type of meeting it is.

Board Meetings:

Perhaps you sit on a community, business or non-profit board. Generally when one has a board meeting all board members are required to attend because there is so much exchange and input from one committee to the next that can affect all involved. Board meetings are generally set up for the same day and time throughout the year. So if you sit on a board and the board doesn't have a regular meeting time you might suggest creating one. Helpful to you and helpful to others.

Bottom line, do your best to get standing appointments, same day and time, with those you do business with on a regular basis and don't forget to put them in your calendar.

Appointment Reminders:

For those of you that tend to forget appointments or might have lost your calendar you can also put your appointments into some software programs you might have on your computer. Many programs have appointment reminders, such as Outlook, ACT and other software. I recommend NOT keeping your calendar JUST on your computer in case of a crash or you don't turn it on that day.

Keeping Track:

If you're using a tickle file, you can drop a note of whom you have an appointment with, plus directions or other paper work if needed, in the current months date or month in which you have an appointment. Don't forget to place the date on the note for the appointment if it's several months in advance.

Oh and let's not forget to add to your calendars birthday parties, anniversary parties, special family events and special business events.

To help you succeed in keeping your appointments and keeping track of your to-do's I have two products that might interest you: Tickle File at  and my 3 W's To-Do Pad at

Now don't forget to make appointments with your self for your "me time" as we discussed in the last issue at

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Top 10 Organizing & Time Challenges People Face

Janet Hall is a Certified Professional Organizer, Certified Pyramid Feng Shui Practitioner, Speaker, and Author and can help you regain control of your life, your time, your stuff, and your environment. Organizing By Phone and in person at

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P.O. Box 263, Port Republic, MD 20676
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Janet L. Hall
P.O. Box 263
Port Republic, MD 20676
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