Simplify Home

A simpler life begins making your home a happy place. How would that feel?

 

A home is a kingdom of it’s own in the midst of the world,

a stronghold amid life’s storms and stresses,

a refuge, even a sanctuary.

 

 – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Get Your Simplify Home Guide

If you were standing at the front door of your home right now looking in, what would you see? What would you feel? The purpose of your home is to be a sanctuary from the rest of the world, a place you can go to relax and connect with loved ones.  Sadly, many homes today hold the clutter and stress from our overfull lives. There are now TV’s in every room which support checking out from our bodies and lives. We have lost our gathering places, like the kitchen table, where we could unload and share. A simpler life begins making your home a happy place. How would that feel? How could that support your health, your family and the giving of your gifts?

To make this transformation simpler, we want you to begin with one room and choose from the ideas below. We feel the bedroom is the most important room in the home since your body spends the most time there (even when you are sleeping the molecules of your body are needing to heal). Here are places to start:

HOUR OF POWER

Set your timer for one hour and journey through your bedroom gathering all the obvious stuff that doesn’t belong there, is no longer useful, or that you are ready to let go. Keep in mind that you are only going after the obvious and easy stuff. If you have to stop and think about it, then wait. You might be shocked what goes away.

FOCUS ON THE FLOOR

Start at the door into your bedroom and work your way around the whole area staying focused on the floor. Pick up and bag all the stuff that you know needs to leave. Don’t worry about the other stuff, it comes later. Then grab the broom or vacuum and relish in cleaning away the old dust and grime. Return to the door, look around and take in the difference.

HIDING UNDERNEATH

You can start the clutter clearing by pulling out all the stuff under the bed (or other furniture). You want to avoid using this as a storage area if at all possible. If you must store something, choose items like extra blankets or clothing. Remember, your body is feeling everything under there while you are sleeping. Once you clear the space, take a the time to clean it also. You will love how it feels.

ADD BEAUTY

Take a look at the top of your nightstand, dresser and other surfaces. Since you have cleared the clutter, can you add beauty like a candle, a plant, or a framed picture?

Enjoy this guest blog – 10 Organizing Tips to Live by for a Tidy Home

For more help on your bedroom clearsimple.com/organizebedroom

 

Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Home, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr
Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Home, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr

Your Guides to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to transform your life.

Simplify Office

What if you could walk into your office tomorrow, look around, get excited and energized?

Regardless of the size of your business, it is essential to have a personalized and organized workspace.

It helps refresh your mind, improves your productivity and deepens the joy in your work.

 – Marla Dee

Get Your Simplify Office Guide

If you were standing at the doorway of your office with the person you admire most, would you be excited or ashamed? We certainly understand if your work space has become cluttered, disorganized and draining. This is what happens when your work expects more than you can give. You might be spending more time in your work space than at relaxing home. You might even be working from home! We wish more companies would give their employees, and more entrepreneurs would give themselves, at least one day each year just for clutter clearing and organizing.

If you are ready for an office that supports you rather than stressing you, we are here to help. You can start with just your desktop, your supply area, your technology, your paper or your productivity. Here are some great ideas to get you going. Give yourself permission and remember it can be powerful to pick just one!

What every office needs and wants:

  • A really nice, big enough desk that you love working at
  • An uncluttered desktop area for work and creativity
  • A very comfortable, supportive chair and a carpet protector to go underneath
  • Two desk drawers for daily supplies, along with an area for other supplies
  • Two drawer file cabinet within arm’s reach of your chair to hold active projects
  • Window and/or dimmer lighting for your preference and needs
  • Computer equipment that is fast, accessible and ergonomically correct
  • A shredder and recycle container close by so you can clear the junk quickly
  • Inspirational object, plant or framed picture of someone you love
  • Bulletin board or other area for visual reminders
  • Incoming container for the paper and information coming at you.
  • A vertical and visual action container for the papers that need your attention
  • A project action center or location such as a different file drawer
  • To read container and location to keep your reading papers separated
  • Music you love or quiet depending on personality
  • An office with a door so you can have privacy when you need it.
  • A great chair to welcome collaborators or visitors (like your spouse) 
  • The entire iRAFT System to handle all your papers. Get details at clearsimple.com/iRAFT
  • Checkout the Ultimate Filing System for homes or small businesses – FreedomFiler

What if you could walk into your office tomorrow, look around and feel yourself get excited and energized?

 Get your Simplify Office guide here

Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Your Office, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr
Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Your Office, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr

Your Guides to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to transform your life.

Organize Your Paper

Are you drowning in a sea of paper? Are the piles taking over your space and your life?

Do  you remember when getting a letter in the mail was a treat? The purpose of paper and information is connection, education, growth, creativity and productivity. Sadly, we have lost touch with this pupose due to the overwhelm. We need help. We need systems to handle all the information coming at us every day.

Time to go from Paper Pile Pain to Paper Power!

Marla Dee

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© is the 3-step organizing system that works for all the areas of your space and life. Let’s use it to change the paper pain to paper power!

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Paper Guide

SEE IT – Take a look at where you’ve been and where you are now. Do your best to be neutral and take the observer viewpoint while exploring below:

  • Go around your space and take pictures of all the paper piles. Then look at the pictures – what do you see?
  • Tap into your emotions and write the story your paper clutter tells.
  • Take time to write what’s working. You can be specific or general.
  • Is your active paper separate from your older papers? Or mixed up.
  • What isn’t working? Where are you stuck and why?
  • What is stressing you the most about your paper pain?
  • Are you holding onto outdated ways of handling paper?

MAP IT – Make a written plan for what you want. Think about the big picture and overall goals with the paper. You can work out the details later.

  • Write how your space will look and feel when you have the right homes and habits in place for handling all of the paper that comes in.
  • Create an online board of images that reflect what you want most.
  • Create a mind map showing the elements of your ideal area and systems.
  • Now take some time to write a new story. How do you want to feel when handling your paper? How might you be open to a different way (i.e. having less paper, using simplified systems, getting help)?

DO IT – Take the steps to make it happen. The DO IT step is loaded because you are now touching all the paper. We will introduce you to the subsystems of iRAFT© for the active paper and S.T.A.C.K.S.© for all the rest. Get help from a professional organizer if needed!

  • Gather and start with your active paper before the older stuff. This would be your most recent piles of incoming paper and mail, bills to be paid, and such. You will use the system of iRAFT© for these papers. iRAFT© stands for incoming, Read, Action, File and Toss. You will want detailed guidance on each step of this system. Get everything at www.clearsimple.com/iRAFT.
  • After you get your active paper organized, you can tackle your older paper and files. Time for the S.T.A.C.K.S.© System that guides you through each step. www.clearsimple.com/systems. You will also want to consider the FreedomFiler System for all your filing needs! www.clearsimple.com/freedomfiler
  • Once you complete your active paper, take time to celebrate.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Paper Guide

Your Guide, Marla Dee.

I love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

Clutter Clear Your Paper

Here are 3 simple ways to start that can be done in under an hour!

Are the paper piles taking over your space and your life?

Getting in control of your paper begins with clearing the clutter.

Start with your purse or wallet, the kitchen counter, or your desktop.

Marla Dee

If you were looking at your desk right now, would you be ready to work or overwhelmed by the chaos? What if you were looking at your kitchen counter? Are the paper piles taking over? For some mysterious reason, paper lands in every nook and cranny of our homes and offices.  You will find it on the kitchen table, the bedroom dresser, top of the washer, in the bathroom, piled high on desktops and all horizontal surfaces across the nation. Never before in mankind’s history have we had this much information coming at us. 

I want to offer some simple places to start since this project can feel huge. This starts you clearing without getting lost in the details. Keep in mind we will take you through SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT. PAPER next. Choose one of the following ideas, schedule the time, turn on music and dive in. Have boxes and bags on hand for goes elsewhere, shred, trash, and goes to someone else.

HOUR OF POWER:

Set your timer for one hour and journey around your home or office gathering all the garbage paper such as old receipts, junk mail, out-dated papers, etc. Keep in mind that you are only going after the obvious and easy stuff. If you have to stop and think about it, then wait. You can also clear your purse or wallet. You are only doing one hour but you might be surprised and amused by how much goes away.

CLEAR THE COUNTER:

Gather all the paper on your kitchen counter and sort into 4 smaller piles labeled Read, Action, File or Toss (you will learn more about this later). Do I want to read it, take action on it, need to file it or just toss it? Move the read and actions piles to their own container and location, the filing to your file drawers and toss into shred  or trash. Lastly, find a beautiful container to live on the kitchen counter for the future incoming.

DO THE DESKTOP:

Follow the guidance given above for sorting into R.A.F.T. Keep in mind that you are only sorting and don’t get sidetracked by trying to take the actions involved with the paper. Also, you will most likely find many papers and items that don’t even belong on your desk. Take the time now to remove them. It is ok to have open space left as you do need an area to work off of.

When you are done, take some deep breaths and notice how different the area you worked with feels. It can be fun to take pictures of all the stuff leaving. Let yourself take in the change and celebrate what you have done. 

Now enjoy fixing food at your kitchen counter and actually working at your desk!

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© Paper Guide

iRAFT© Paper Guide

Your Guide Marla Dee. 

I love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

3 Step System for Kids School & Precious Papers

Yes, you can have fun with your kids and their school papers using this 3 STEP SYSTEM!

One school year is over and another one is ready to begin! So what to do with the huge pile up of art, reports, awards and all those papers that come home throughout the year. Here is a simple system you can do now to clear out the last year and then be set up for this coming year.

Marla Dee, creator of the Clear & SIMPLE Way, has been helping people for 18 years. And she comes from a family of 10 children so she gets the chaos that kids can create and the desire to keep those precious pieces of art!

Marla Dee on KUTV – 3 step system for kids school & precious papers!

Step 1 – Get a bulletin board or display area for each child for the treasures of the week to be seen!

I have been blessed to work with hundreds of moms through the years. And I have heard over and over again – “Where do I put all the art work and school papers?” When your child has a chosen place to put the treasures, your child feels seen and proud. But you can rotate the pieces weekly or monthly. Once you take them off the board, go to step 2.

Step 2 – Choose a container, about the size of a file tub, which can hold the papers all year long. Once the papers come off your child’s board, ask which ones do they still want to keep and then place them in the drawer or tub or cool container. They will still be there throughout the school year and if you run out of space, it is a signal to go through a release a layer. Now check out Step 3.

Step 3 – Schedule a day with your kids for paper play. It is time to do STACKS© (sort, toss, assign, contain, keep it up and simplify) on the paper. The key is to make this last step FUN. Put on music and have snacks. Then let your child take their tub of papers and dump it out on the table or floor and spread them all out. Enjoy the time as your child relives the school year. Honor this time with them by listening to the stories. Next, ask your kids to choose their FAVORITES – the TREASURES!! Then 3 hole punch them and put them in a big binder. Last, you can let them decorate the front, or pick a favorite and slide it in the front sleeve.

*** The best part is now placing the binders in your child’s room so they can relive those memories for years to come.

Have you tried this system? Please share your stories with me at [email protected] or www.facebook.com/clearsimple.com and I will give you a prize. I want you to get organized and have fun doing it – Marla Dee

 

 

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.

The 3 step foundation system to get organized!

When we are confronted with all the stuff in our space, organizing can feel overwhelming! We don’t even know where to start. Marla Dee defines clutter as “delayed decision or holding onto the past.” The stuff seems to pile up because there are just too many decisions to make. So we need a simple place to start. Try this three step system for any project of any size. For more details get the C&S Systems card here.

Take the 3 steps in order

SEE IT – What’s working, what’s not working and why?

The first step is SEE IT.©, which stands for take a look at where you’ve been. Before you dive into touching the stuff, take 5 minutes to answer the questions what’s working, what’s not working and why? 

MAP IT – How do I want my space to look, feel and function?

The second step is MAP IT.©, which stands for make a plan for what you want. This can seem overwhelming also. To make this step simple write how you want your space/project to look, feel and function when you’re done.

DO IT – STACKS. Sort, Toss, Assign, Contain, Keep it up, Simplify

The third step is DO IT.©, which stands for take the steps to get it done. For this step, try out the Action System of STACKS. Now that you are touching the stuff, the project gets crazy. The power of STACKS is taking one step at a time.You do this by asking one question and making only one decisionat a time. Tune into our blog next week to get more details. 

Get the Clear & SIMPLE SYSTEMS CARD and more here

Clear & Simple SYSTEMS Card

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