12 Days ’till Christmas

Ditch the pressure and embrace the Christmas spirit 12 Days 'till Christmas

The beginning of December brings much excitement and joy about the fast approaching holidays. You can finally indulge all those crafty whims you’ve saved up for this time of year. Then suddenly you’re knee deep in Christmas cards, homemade ornaments, baking all those yummy traditional foods, shopping for presents (online because it saves more time of course). All the effort and planning we put into making sure everyone has the most amazing holiday is….. EXHAUSTING!

A recent poll from Today Show suggests that women dedicate an average of 83 hours preparing for the festive season. That’s an entire 2 weeks dedicated to all things jolly, on top of everything else we have going on!   How do you prepare for and more importantly, get into the spirit of Christmas?

Wouldn’t it be easier if you had a system for streamlined and stress-free holiday success? Your time and energy would be saved for the moments that count the most. Well you’re in luck! Did You Remember the Milk has the best Christmas Planning Resources at the click of a mouse! I love helping our members to ease that load.   Isn’t it too late to download a Christmas planner now?? It’s never too late. While you’re going through the motions right now in the countdown to Christmas day, start building on your plan for next year. With our Ultimate Christmas Planner, you will be organized in no time.   Each year in November, I open my Ultimate Christmas binder and my whole festive season is planned out for me. There is my gift list from last year, cool gift wrapping ideas, last year’s Christmas card list for updating, favourite online stores, home-made gifts planner, playlists, favourite recipes for ham glaze, Cumberland sauce, turkey stuffing, spiced nuts and all the other divine recipes that only come out once a year. Then there are the favourite charities and their instructions for how to give. I also have the same project file set up on my computer.   Other things you might add to your file:

  • Inspiration for getting into the spirit
  • Your Christmas budget
  • Gift Lists
  • Organise and make invitations and cards
  • Timelines and sequences of when to decorate and make certain purchases
  • Baking strategies
  • Christmas Dinner lists and preparation
  • New Years party planning
  • Sound tracks

That’s only a fraction of what we have in store for you. Enjoy the parties and bubbles and smile to yourself knowing you’ve done it in half the time it took last year.   Download our Ultimate Xmas Planner HERE!


Give yourself a year

An organised life allows you to have more time, less stress, more money and the ability to achieve any goal you desire. But if you’re starting at zero, I mean with nothing, then it is going to take a bit of time and some planning. Rather than getting overwhelmed, it’s important to tackle your organising process step by step. We have made the journey as painless as possible with our step by step systems so you don’t have to think about the process while you’re sorting out your stuff.

It’s important to highlight the importance of commitment when you’re on the road to getting organised. Without commitment, all the experts in the world will be of no avail. You can very easily undo many hours, weeks or months of hard work without systems to maintain your order.

We get disorganised because of one thing: our thought processes. The way we’re showing up today is a result of the way we have approached our life over the past weeks / months / years. Disorganisation is a result of being overloaded, distracted, multi-tasked and overwhelmed.

It has a negative compounding effect in that it becomes even harder and harder to think clearly, to relax and to be present when we’re surrounded by chaos and clutter. So the spiral continues downward.

Even when we know enough’s enough, and we really want to get organised, fear stops us. And when we’re stuck in fear, half our brain shuts down, leaving all our organising skills out the window. To add insult to injury, we look around at our mess and start to feel guilty, ashamed and helpless. Not a very empowering state.

As we grow older, the problems multiply. “Now is not a good time to get organised. I need to…plan my presentation for next week, I need to get the kids’ dinner, I have laundry to finish, I’m busy planning our holiday….” the list goes on.

I believe that we each have a unique calling and that everyone benefits from a calmer, more organised you. Your light shines brighter when you’ve cleared away the clutter. We arrive at ‘disorganisation’ through an unconscious process. It’s the default scenario. So to get back to our best selves, we need to become conscious of the process for a while, until we become unconsciously competent at it. You’re tired of the state of affairs your in, and that affects every aspect of your life.
So the minute you decide to get organised and make a commitment, then everything starts to change.

Give yourself one year, and you can gradually and easily learn the very best organising skills and achieve your goals. And as your physical spaces become streamlined and organised, the rest of your life starts to fall in line. You will notice a shift in your energy, your mood, your time and your money. Imagine how powerful you can be when you’re organised. How would you show up in the world if you didn’t have to worry about all the stuff that’s weighing you down?

Let’s find out….

Nearly 101 Uses for an Over the Door Shoe Rack

This post is from guest Blogger Kristina Duke from Blue Sky Engagement. We would love to hear your thoughts – please comment down below.

(maybe not that many!)

I’m sure many of you have seen a couple of these ideas floating around the Internet but I know I have some ideas that will surprise you and change the way you look at over the door shoe pockets.




Use for cleaning supplies and those pesky odd socks! (Please note that I do not recommend that you have this many supplies on hand – that is just clutter but the idea is great.)

2. Baby

Perfect for holding baby lotion, powder, wipes, breast pads and baby socks and shoes.


3. Girls room

These pockets are great for Barbies and her accessories. They are also great for any other little toys like Littlest Pet Shop and the like.

Another organiser would work also for all your daughter’s hair accessories.

Here is my daughter’s organiser with a combination of all.

4. Boys Room

The shoe racks work great for action figures, cars and even Lego pieces.


5. Bathroom


As one of the smallest rooms of the house, it demands our attention to storage ideas.
If you would prefer not to have one on the back of the door, you could cut an organiser to size and hang inside the cupboard door. Organise the hair accessories, tooth brushing supplies, makeup, bandaids, clean washcloths and more.


6. Kitchen

Pantries big and small have a habit of losing smaller items into a dark abyss. Bring these items to light by storing them on the door – packet mixes, cookie cutters or other small utensils, snack food packets, herbs and spices and more.

Could also be used to store drink bottles and travel flasks.



7. Study/ Craft room

The study is the place where everything that doesn’t have a home seems to live. We put items here because we need access to them but they never really have a spot.

Try using the shoe rack for storing cords, charging cables, small gaming devices, random hardware items, stationary items, batteries etc.

Shoe racks could also serve as perfect storage for craft supplies – those little packets of glitter or sequin, ribbon/ thread or string, buttons, pipecleaners, stamps, paints, brushes, stickers, scissors, tape, textas, pencils or crayons… the list is endless but at least now its organised.

8. Front entry

As this is the last door you see before you leave for the day, this could be the perfect organisation solution for you to never forget things as you walk out. Keys, phones, diary, dog leads, scarf, sunglasses, sunscreen or bug spray and more could all be stored ready for action.


9. Bedroom

I know I like certain items to be on display and others to be in hidden storage. So try one of these ideas to enhance your storage options available and to suit your style.

A clear shoe rack would be perfect for displaying your accessories – costume jewellery, scarves, belts and even hats at a glance and easily accessible to vamp your outfit.
Maybe you prefer to sort your winter tights, or even your underwear.


For the men ties and belts are the perfect items for this inexpensive storage idea.

If you are an avid reader this could be the place to house your paperback books.


10. Garage

Similar to the study, the garage can be a catchall for miscellaneous items. Mount a show organiser to a peg board or on the back of a door to house cords, cables ties, small tools, nails and screws, electrical tape, WD40, spare keys or padlocks etc.



11. Camping


Hang one is your camp kitchen area to hold utensils, cloths, bug spray and other needed items. Keep them off the ground and easy to access.


12. Garden

Hang one on a wall undercover to hold your gloves, spade, weeding fork, secateurs, packets of seeds, gardening hat and sunscreen.

You could even use one to create and inexpensive vertical garden – perfect for herbs!


13. Car

Cut to size to fit the back of the seat, these make a cheap organisation solution for kid car clutter especially on longer trips. Pack snacks, books, gaming supplies, even comfy socks or eye masks for extended journeys.


14. Christmas

Why not make a custom advent calendar?


As you can see if you think outside the shoebox (or over the door pockets) you can find many ways to contain, order and control the things in your house from becoming clutter.

Some things just work better when they are stored so they are visible and easy to access.

The key is set limits to the space that hold your things and not exceed those limits. No one said you couldn’t max out your spaces storage potential though!

(Expert tip: For light items the cheaper brands work fine but I highly recommend spending the money on quality when storing heavier items on your door.)

KristinaAbout Kristina Duke

Kristina Duke is the Decluttering Diva! A Professional Organiser servicing the North Shore Sydney suburbs – helping fellow mums to control the clutter in their homes and create organised spaces that make their lives easier to manage.

Check out her website www.declutteringdiva.com.au or “like” the FB for regular hints, tips and inspiration (www.facbook.com/declutteringdivaaustralia)

The Digital Disaster Zone

orgnasing+photosAre you overwhelmed by your digital images?

Digital clutter is on the increase. People are overwhelmed by images that are stored on memory cards, CD, USB, hard drive, phones, tablets, cloud and a plethora of photo sorting and storing software programs. And it is not only digital images that people feel overwhelmed by; it can also be negatives, slides and prints. No matter what format your precious memories are in we understand that all you want to do is enjoy your photos and have peace of mind that they are safe.

Here are our top 5 tips to help keep your digital photos organised.

1. Check your camera settings: having the correct date on your images will save you time and energy in the future
2. Delete the dodgy ones straight away: Resist the urge to keep all your images and be conscious that a bad photo is just digital clutter.
3. Have a place for everything so everything can be in its place: whatever filing system you use be consistent and make sure everyone knows and uses it.
4. BACK UP!: Wherever, however – just do it!
5. Make it a habit: just like your lawns, your photos deserve your efforts with maintenance, if you stay on top of it you can keep organised in just 30mins a month – promise!


Once your photos are organised it is super easy to utilise your photos in photobooks, slide shows and all the other display options in the current market. Once utilised the enjoyment for you and others comes naturally. As does the peace of mind that you can easily ensure the safety of those images with regular backups.

She's Organised

Think about your kitchen, if your fridge is full of healthy ingredients and your meals planned in advance how much easier is it to do the right thing?

The Filing Fairies are here to help you over that initial hurdle; be it digitising old prints and slides or searching for images on numerous devices. We manipulate your environment to make the things you should be doing (enjoying your photos) easy.

Our organise > utilise > enjoy concept can apply to a myriad of situations and life scenarios. I hope we have inspired you to think ‘organised’ and look for ways to ‘hide the cookies’.

About the author:

Mara from the Filing Fairies is a Professional Organiser specialising in photo and office organisation including paper and digital filing. They provide easy to use solutions to small business, individuals and families. For more info, contact: www.thefilingfairies.com.au

How to Create a Vision for your Business

Are you ready to start turning your ideas / passion into money?

Whether or not you have your business up and running yet it’s critical you begin to see yourself running a successful business.  When I’m faced with challenges in my business, it’s my vision that keeps me going.  When I look at the inspiring vision I set when I started my company, all complications fade and I’m motivated to push through and carry on.

Every major company in the world has a vision or mission statement – a broad, futuristic idea of what their company will achieve and look like in the future. Our five-step process helps you get there, but you need to know where “there” is first.

So, let’s take a look at what a vision statement is, and why it’s important for you to create one for your business.

A vision statement is a broad, inspiring image of the future state a business aspires to reach. It describes without specifying how aspirations will be achieved, or when. It’s ambitious and forward-thinking. It’s not about where the organization is now… it’s about what the organisation will be, or aspires to be.

A vision statement needs to:

  • describe your aspirations and intent
  • be inspirational for your future staff and customers
  • project a compelling story
  • paint a clear picture
  • use engaging and descriptive language
  • be realistic
  • align with your company’s values

The vision statement will also provide a clear criteria or measuring stick for decision-making. When making tough choices, ask “Does this support the vision statement?” If major initiatives don’t support the overall business vision, chances are they aren’t worth the investment of time and money.

If your business doesn’t have a vision statement, it needs one. There’s no time like the present!  If you already have one, then take this opportunity to strengthen it or make sure it’s aligned with the current dream you have for yourself and your company.

Your vision statement – once created, agreed to and perfected – should remain consistent and unchanged for several years.

Your team needs a strong, clear vision statement just as much as you do. When creating a vision statement, keep this in mind. The vision will need to be something that your staff can embrace, get excited about and that will motivate, inspire and build morale.

How will you communicate your vision to your employees once you’ve created it? How can you inspire them to nurture and support your vision on a daily basis, and in everything they do? How can you empower and motivate them to take ownership of the company’s future and their stake in it?

Our next blog post will help you get started with creating YOUR unique vision statement.  In the meantime, if you would like some help, please e-mail me at Brigitte@momentumfirst.com.au and we’ll help you get started quickly and easily.

How to Create a Vision for your Business – Part 2

evaluate_where_your_business_isIn the last blog post, we talked about why you need a vision statement for your business. This post explains the first step to creating your unique business vision statement.

The easiest place to start is to evaluate where your business is today. That will reveal where you WANT it to be.

Start by looking at your current strengths and weaknesses from the perspective of everyone who does business with you: your customers, staff, management, vendors or suppliers and owners.

For example, what would your customers say about your level or quality of service? Would this area be considered a strength or a weakness? What would your staff say, or what would you want them to say about training and professional development opportunities? What do you think about your income and overall financial growth? Use this chart as a guide:

Analyze your observations, and remember that your weaknesses represent great opportunities for change and improvement, while your strengths need to be nurtured and developed.

Take a look at what you’ve written and answer the following questions:

  • What does the overall picture look like?
  • How does the overall picture align with the dream you have for your business?
  • What great achievements and qualities exist in the strengths section? (List 10)
  • What opportunities exist in the weaknesses section? (List 10)

Now that you’ve had a good look at where your business is positioned today, in the next post, I’ll help you to future pace your business and define where you want it to be.

Organise your Office for Outstanding Results

This month we’ve been guiding our members to overhaul their offices for success. When you organise your work environment, you optimise your surroundings for productivity and increase your ability to work effectively. stunning office 2[1]

The actions you take today to organise your office will also save you considerable amounts of time, money and energy.

A disorganised office costs more to run. Supplies, tools and equipment go missing because nothing is organised or put away properly. Those things have to be replaced to get the job done, and twice as much money has been spent in the end. Plus, you spend valuable time searching for missing items, files or paperwork.

In fact, some studies have revealed that the average business owner spends nearly four weeks each year navigating through messy or cluttered desks, looking for lost information. Does that sound like productive time to you?

In our online course, ‘Milking It’ we cover:

  • The psychological impacts of a clean and organized workspace
  • The financial benefits of an organized workspace
  • How to audit your work environment
  • How to implement small changes in your office that will increase productivity
  • Making sure that your office is equipped with productivity tools

If I haven’t convinced you yet, read these benefits of taking the time to create an organized and well-structured office.

  • Better communication. An organised office environment encourages better internal communication. With a central area for staff communication, it is easier to share sales news, track targets, and plan and monitor projects.
  • A manageable budget. Organised spaces will allow you to quickly see what you have, what you need, and when you might need more. This supports the creation and sustaining of budgets, especially for supplies and equipment.
  • Increased work ethic and morale. When you and your staff take care of your surroundings, it makes the workplace a more pleasant place. Taking care shows that you value your work and the people who work for you.
  • Better time management. Simply put, you spend less time looking for things and more time actually working. An organized office will complement and support your time management strategies.

Stay tuned for some office organizing tips.

How to Create a Vision for your Business – Part 3

Where you want to beIn the last blog post, we helped you to explore where your business stands today – the good, the bad and the ugly.

Now we want to get into the detail of where you WANT it to be. When you look at the strengths and opportunities that you explored, where would you like each one to be? Using the features on the chart provided in Part 2, above, let’s now turn them into clear sentences describing the future state of your business. For example, “we constantly surprise and delight our customers with prompt and professional service, which creates word of mouth referrals”.

What opportunities and aspirations are the highest priorities for you and your business?

Take the sentences you created from the exercise above and list them in order of importance to you. You may have to do this several times before you feel the order is accurate. Then combine duplicate sentences or ones that describe similar things.

Once you’ve finished your list, take the top three to five sentences and combine them into a cohesive paragraph. That will give you a really good overview of the kind of business you want to build.

Refine your statements so that they’re broad, future-oriented and use words that reflect your values, priorities and dreams.

You need to refine your statement so it’s smooth, clear and easy to understand. Here’s a checklist to use when reviewing the words you’ve written:

  • is it inspirational for your staff and customers?
  • does it project a compelling image?
  • does it paint a clear picture?
  • have you used engaging and descriptive language?
  • is it realistic?
  • does it align with your company’s values?

TIP: You can use phrases like:

A leader in…
Support the development of…
Offer opportunities to…
Continually create…
Build on…
Bring together…

5. Include your staff in the vision creation process and ask them for feedback.
Do they understand the vision? Do they support it? Does it inspire them? Can they find meaning in their work based on it? Incorporate their feedback where possible and relevant.

6. Put your vision statement where everyone can see it – your staff, management, customers and vendors.
Once you’ve created your vision statement, share it with the world. Your vision is something you’ve committed to, and it lets everyone know where your company is heading. It allows them to see where you want to go, and gives them the opportunity to help you get there.

Now, do you have everything you need to start working towards your vision?

In the Momentum Business Academy e-learning program, we will show you how to work through a comprehensive goal-setting process that will act as the roadmap for achieving your vision. You’ll also review, in depth, the five-step process which is the strategy that you’ll use to achieve your goals, and in turn, the vision you’ve created. Find out more here: www.momentumbusinessacademy.com

Is being organised overrated?

Brigitte, Kelly Higgins-Devine and GraceThis week I spoke live on 612ABC radio with the lovely Kelly Higgins-Devine. She asked me if ‘being organised’ was worth the effort.  This is a great interview for anyone who wants to make some positive changes in their life but needs to know where start.  There’s a lot of laughing, but there are some very practical and motivating messages.  If you listen to the end, there’s a bit in there for the fellas too!


Continue reading “Is being organised overrated?”

Be A Basket Case

contemporary-storage-boxesThanks to bright colours and funky designs, baskets are no longer something Grandma used to store her knitting in. These days they come in a wide range of styles, shapes, colours and materials, that they are not just a great organising tool, but compliment any room in your house. Being both functional and fashionable you can use them for anything from storing clothes and books, to children’s toys or to storing the dirty laundry until wash day. With so much variety you can colour co-ordinate with your room or decor and choose the style, shape or strength you need. Strong baskets are best for heavy items such as books while less sturdy baskets are fine for clothing or children’s soft toys.

Fashionable baskets can enhance any room. In a bathroom you can use them to store towels, soaps, or bath products. A range of smaller baskets inside a drawer can make your make up easier to find and keep it tidy and all together. Matched properly to your interior decor, baskets are stylish solutions for any organising dilemmas from the pantry to the bedroom.

You can colour code baskets for specific uses or each person in your family. Assign a set colour for each child to use for their school items, clothing, toys and shoes. After all starting children off early with strategies to keep their things organised will make them a tidy and organised adult.

If you are looking for an innovative and fresh way to keep your home tidy and keep the clutter away, baskets are a great way to organise your family and your home. Another good thing about baskets is you can spend as much or as little as you want. You’re spoilt for choice so shop around; there is a basket out there that’s perfect for you.