Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Reduce Your Stress: Get Organized!

Julie Walraven, of Design Resumes, had an inspiring blog post yesterday ("Why I Spent Saturday Shredding.") That's Julie on the left there, and her office does look pretty good (from what I can see of it in the photo...) I asked her for a before-and-after photo of her office, but she didn't take one, unfortunately.

I find disorganization to be stressful. Like many resume writers, I'm surrounded by paper. I like to be able to work from paper documents instead of computer files, so I print out lots of stuff -- the client's old resume, their questionnaire, research materials (from which I cull keywords), work authorization files, drafts. Ugh. I am surrounded by paper. (I'm surrounded by more of it than usual at the moment because my shredder died, and the plastic tote box that contains my current pile of shredding is actually too large/heavy for me to "tote" to my favorite office supply store to have it shredded!)

Seeing the piles of shredding -- along with all my normal paper -- is stressful!

When I'm not organized, I'm stressed. When stuff is piled everywhere, I lose or misplace notes. I would forget about meetings and I was notorious for losing receipts. All of this made my stress rise through the roof.

When you buy something and it doesn't work, you stress. THEN when you can't find the receipt....it isn't a good scene. That's happened to me a few times, I admit!

I've heard of a program called Evernote (works for the Mac!) that I'm thinking of trying. Currently, I'm doing a little better with my "overall" notes and thoughts by using an online website called "Workflowy." I'm still searching for a better way to handle the volume of paper that I seem to accumulate, but at least I know that I perform better when I take the time to organize. As the old public service ad says, "Knowing is half the battle!"

Is organization (or lack of) is one of your stress triggers? How do you handle it? What tools help you stay organized? (Are you one of those resume writers who prints everything out too?)

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