By: Bruce Witchel

How to Keep Your Work from Taking Over Your Life... 

Or How to Keep Your Office/Home in Check!

Tags: Home, Neat, Clean, Tidy, How to Keep Everything in its Place

June 28, 2016 - MISSISSAUGA: I am very grateful that I work in in an industry that lets me choose to live and work in my home office. This is the utmost in work/life balance and lets me control a lot of aspects in my life. But there are some drawbacks that I've learned, through trial and error, to minimize. These include the need to complete chores around the home when I'm working. I've overcome a lot of distractions by being neat and orderly, and by having a place for everything. 

Here's some strategies that I've adopted in my home and office, along with an article from Houzz that may be of interest in your own home:

1. My home has a separate office that's accessible to my clients and is attached to the house. (It's actually my double garage that's been insulated, with sky lights.) When I'm in my office I concentrate on work and the tasks at hand. I show up every day in the morning around the same time. I'm able to grab a bite in my home and then come back to my office.

2. My office is organized and is work-centric. I have a white board that allows me to see what clients are to be served right now and in the immediate future. Everything that is visible helps me to address the tasks at hand. (And everything in the past is put away - in file cabinets, folders or storage.) I display my awards on the wall and use the power of my accomplishments to visualize future achievements.

3. I struggle with To-Do lists! In my industry we have to deal with tons of data, clients to serve and tasks to do. I find that reviewing at the end of the day (what I have to do the next day) works well for me.  I'm currently tranferring my paper-based lists to an online list, like Evernote. The tasks will be available from any online device and will let me get that sense of accomplishment when I strike out any item!

4. I get rid of stuff. Purging unwanted items helps me to not get weighed down by too much clutter or storage issues, and helps keep my mind on the next task. Whether it's files that need to be shredded or old equipment hanging around, noone needs that mental clutter. I try to deal with things as they come up, to fix items if possible, but to do a real purge at least twice a year.

5. I save things for a rainy day. Maybe it's my upbringing, but I believe that all objects can have a purpose. I save pens and notepads and elastics and highlighers and promtional items and have a huge area in my basement for larger items. (Let's just say that if the power goes out for a few days, we'll be fine!) But the key to having a cache of products is to store them (out of the way) so that they are accessible when you need them. I have a bin for each smaller item in a storage cabinet. I have stackable crates lining a room in my basement. Everything is in it's place (and it's so enjoyable!)

10 Principles of Organizing That Work in Every Room




Bruce Witchel, Real Estate Agent
Mississauga, ON,
(416) 948-2435