Now that we’ve had a nice three-day weekend, it’s time to refocus and get back to work. The first step is to take stock and see where you are.
Here’s a list of things I do to get ready for a busy fall:
1. Clean up my desk
I tend to collect papers, so I go through all the accumulated stuff, and file or throw it away.
2. File Cabinets
Go through file cabinets and clean out old files. If you must keep files for tax or other reasons, invest in a couple of sturdy “banker’s boxes,” put in the old files well-labeled and store them until you can get rid of them.
3. Go through desk drawers and clean them out.
During the drawer cleaning process, you will find lots of stuff that you aren’t sure about. Make a baggie or box for repeating items like pens, post it notes, and gum.
Collect all business cards in box or baggie, and let that be a separate process. Collect repeating items into separate bags. Later you can decide what to keep. The first step is to sort what you have into piles. Collect personal keepsakes in another baggie or box, for later review.
4. Go through junk drawers and clean them out.
Decide what can go, and what from your previous desk drawer-cleaning can now redefined as “junk.”
5. Go through all email.
Start from June to make sure you didn’t miss anything or anyone.
There are always a few hangnails that you forgot. Also, reconnect with people you may have overlooked in the hustle and bustle, as being a good correspondent is a key to success.
6. Make a master list of everything you want to accomplish by the end of the year.
Take a big piece of paper, set a timer for 5 minutes and just put down everything, big and small. Then sit with your calendar and assess what is possible or not. Making clear choices about how you will spend your time will bring you greater happiness.
Be sure to schedule writing time!
These simple techniques will help prepare you for a highly productive fall.
Here’s to your successful writing,
Professor Marilyn Horowitz