Wednesday, March 31, 2010

LIFE 101 - EMAIL Overload and EMAIL Management Advice

LIFE101 – Questions & Answers with Nancy Black, Organization Plus (

Q: Nancy, I’m suffering from email overload and it was even worse after a recent vacation. Do you have any email management advice?

A: First, let me assure you that you are not alone. Many people are now asking Professional Organizers for help dealing with email overload and email management in general. Here are some ideas:

Have someone retrieve your email for you, or login to your account, and delete junk email and unsolicited offers (SPAM).

Limit the number of newsletters you subscribe to.

Get a separate or “alternative” email address at Google (GMAIL) or Yahoo! for email newsletters.

Be very careful who you give your personal or private email address to. Give out your “alternative” email address more freely.

Talk with your email provider (Verizon, Comcast, webmaster) or technical support person to discuss the best ways to reduce junk email and SPAM based on the email client software that you use (i.e. Outlook, Thunderbird, Eudora, etc.).

Use your email software to “report” SPAM and junk email. How you actually do this varies from one software package to another, but most have it.

I hope this helps. These things have helped my clients who had the same concerns.

~ Nancy


About Nancy Black

Nancy Black is a Professional Organizer in the Boston area, with more than 25 years of experience helping people get organized, manage the clutter in their lives, and "turn their piles into files." Visit her website at or call her at (978) 922-6136 to learn more about how she changes people's lives in only three hours with a "3 Hour Transformation."

Sunday, March 28, 2010

2010 Cenus Due April 1st.....

How It Affects the Nation - 2010 Census

Be sure to mail in your 2010 Cenus by April st.

It only takes a few minutes to fill it out.

Only 45% have been returned to date
You can help this increase this percent.

Friday, March 26, 2010

April 22nd 40th Anniversary of Earth Day

April 22nd is Earth Day.

It is hard to believe that this year is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.

It seems like it has only been promoted in the last 5 to 10 years.

Many magazines feature articles on recycling and ways to conserve energy. They also promote organizing products that make recycling easier and that are made with recycled material. Check out See Jane Work and The New Essex Office, and The Container Store at: http// /recommendedproducts/html for eco-friendly products.

Looking for a product that you can't find?Ask me about doing product research for you.

Do you recycle, plastic, metal?

How many recycling bins, do you fill up on your recycling collection day?

Do you know that the more you recycle, the more money your community will save?

Have a brainstorming session with your family and friends on what you can do to make your community and the world cleaner and more sustainable. I'd love to hear your ideas.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Real Results: Email from a client.

Real Results

Email from Client Letter:

Many people ask me if they will be able to maintain the system after I create it for them.

Recently I received the following email from a client. According to my records, I had organized her office 14 years ago.

“How many years has it been??? And even in another office I can still do what you said to do way back when!!! Good news is that I do not have those humongous number of boxes stored on those tall shelves anymore in that back room - somebody else is fulfilling orders these days ;

] and my new office only has two offices. But I DO still find myself amidst piles of papers even though I got rid of the 18,000 paper file cabinets! I am down to one file cabinet and keep it pretty lean most of the time ;-].

I left NSBF this morning with renewed impetus to clean off the desk - have been trying (occasionally successfully) to maintain a clear surface ever since I moved (and even before I moved) 18 months ago. Today was THE DAY!!! Got most of it done. Still working on it, however. Recycle paper bin is FULL!!!! And the next pickup day is NEXT Friday ;-[.

I have a nancy-angel on my shoulder whispering sweet somethings about where to put this and that. I sometimes have even put everything from the desk on the floor to filter through!!! Arrruughh, that is tough to clean up!!!

Thought you should have a reminder of your impact - even maybe decades later and still going!!! Could we initiate a Nancy Bunny???

Catheryne (Cathy) Draper
The Math Studio, Inc.
Creator and Publisher of The Algebra Game

What systems have you maintained for over 10 years?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Daylight Savings Time Begins March 14th

Daylight Savings Time Begins March 14th

Remember to set your clocks ahead 1 hour. Spring forward.............

You will loose an hour of sleep, but you will gain daylight at the end of the workday.

Only 6 days later, March 20th, Spring begins.

Those of us who are not "snow bunnies" are happy to that it is almost spring. WE look forward to the birds chirpping , the forsythias blooming, and the flowers budding.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Evening At The Museum March 18th 6-8:30 pm

Charitable Event to Benefit Windrush Farm Therapeutic Equitation

Mayor Kimberly Driscoll scheduled to welcome attendees to event.

On March 18th, WINGS (Women in Networking Giving Support) is hosting its 2010 Networking Event at the Peabody Essex Museum, “Evening at the Museum”.

WINGS is a non-profit organization which aims to enhance the lives and provide resources to empower women across the North Shore. WINGS is comprised of women professionals, entrepreneurs and women owned businesses.

All net proceeds of this event will benefit Windrush Farm Therapeutic Equitation a non-profit, working horse farm that has been successfully helping children and adults with physical, emotional, and learning disabilities since 1964.

Special guest speaker for the event will be Victoria Block, a long-time member of the 7NEWS and Emmy Award-winning general assignment reporter who has covered a variety of subjects from breaking news to investigative features, from education to politics, and from neighborhood crime to global warming.

Mayor of Salem Kim Driscoll will welcome attendees. Silent Auction, cash bar, music and hors d’oeuvres. Doors open at 6:00pm.

Advance ticket sales only at The cost of admission is $35 advance sale, $40 after March 12th.
For more information, contact Cheryl Wogan or DawnMarie Corneau, President 978-299-3035.

Hope to see you there. Nancy

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Life Management 101

Life Management and Organization Basics

With more than 24 years of experience as a Professional Organizer it's clear to me that people often forget about the fundamentals of time management and organization.

With that in mind, I thought I'd use the next few editions of my newsletter to "Get Back to the Basics" of life management and getting organized.

The Why

When people don't understand the purpose behind doing something, the "why," they can quickly drift away from their intentions.

So here is the "why" behind managing your time and getting organized:

Being organized and managing your time effectively will help you to reduce stress, reduce feelings of anxiousness or feeling "out-of-control," and generally have an all around IMMEDIATE positive impact on your life.

Being organized and managing your time effectively will make you feel better about yourself, feel better about the work you do, and allow you to spend more time doing the things YOU want to do for YOU.

Here are some things to consider:

Keep a Calendar

Keeping a schedule, or a calendar, is the only way to manage your time. It will help you plan your time and appointments more effectively.

There are so many different "calendar systems" available it can be overwhelming when looking for one. Whether electronic or paper-based, find one that you like; the style, the layout, the size - and you're more likely to stick to it. Set a goal to use it every day for a minimum of 60 days. I think you'll be very happy with the results!

Plan Each Day

Planning each day ahead of time will help you accomplish more and feel more in control of your life and work. I've worked with people who do this the "night before" and others who do this first thing in the morning. Whatever your choice, planning ahead is a good thing and fairly simple. Write out a to-do list but avoid putting too many things on it!

Prioritize Your Tasks

Not everything can be a "top priority" and time-consuming but relatively unimportant to-do items can quickly be overwhelming and eat up your day.

Prioritizing is very important. You have to choose which items must get done first and which items can wait or be done after the more important tasks. Prioritizing is the cornerstone of time management and getting organized.

Have a System

Having a "system" in place is another critical component of effectively staying organized and managing your time.

Why do so many people lose weight with Weight Watchers?

Because it is a system. If you follow it, it works.

If you fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants, as they say, without a system, you will create unnecessary stress and anxiousness for yourself.

There are residential systems and there are office systems. There are filing and paperwork systems and there are mail management systems.

Without systems managing your life becomes more difficult.

Without systems getting and staying organized turns into a clutter control problem - I guarantee it.

Monday, March 1, 2010

MassPay Got It Done!

Congratulations to Jason Maxwell, President of MassPay, and Sarah Harwood, Security Coordinator, they completed their WISP by the March 1st deadline.

Jason learned about this law at a seminar given by Laurie LaBrie, President of Integrated Staffing and then worked with Nancy Black, Compliance Coordinator of the Get It Done Team.

On March 1st Laurie and Nancy presented Jason & Sarah with a Get It Done cake deigned by
Kelly Delaney, Owner of Cakes for Occassions.

To see the great cake watch for the Beverly Chamber Newsletter and The Salem News. Sorry
photo wasn't available when this was posted.

MA Data Security Law Effective TODAY!

Massachusetts business owners (all) are required by law to protect their customer's information - in any form, electronic or otherwise -
starting TODAY March 1, 2010.
The new standards are pretty stringent. Penalties are significant.

Did you complete your WISP? Do you know what a WISP is? If you aswered NO to either of these quesions call 978-922-6136 noto ask how you can get it done.

Nancy Black, Compliance Coordinator, GetIt Done Team
and owner of Organization Plus

Vote for Time Well Spent for Pepsi Refresh Project Grant.

Vote for Time Well Spent for Pepsi Refresh Project Grant.

One of my colleagues, Nancy Gallant, has applied for a grant from the Pepsi Refresh Project.
She is a March Grant Candidate.

Time Well Spent will be an Eco-Arts & Creative Repurposing Community Enrichment Center. The mission of Time Well Spent is to help people live with mindful awareness of the impact of their daily lifestyle & consumer choices on the quality of their life, the lives of those in need & the environment. Inspired by the need to rid ourselves of the clutter that creates barriers to our best life, we'll put our collective clutter to use in service to our mission!

To find out more about PEPSI contest and to VOTE:
It only takes a minute!