20 February 2020

App Review – OneNote




Purpose: OneNote is a digital note taking app. It provides you a place to collect your thoughts and ideas. In OneNote you can also store articles, images, videos and more all in one place for easy reference. 

Benefits: OneNote provides a centralized place to “brain dump” everything that is in your head, as well as a place to plan and store information. Notes are organized in a Notebook – Section – Page/Note setup, which allows for easy navigation and search. Where Evernote notes are very linear, OneNote notes can be set up much like a collage or inspiration board. This is great for those who don’t always think in a straight line. The app is cloud-based as well as desktop, allowing you to sync across all devices – iOS/Mac and Android/PC

Cost: There is an always free cloud-based option. You can also get OneNote as part of the Office365 subscription from Microsoft.

Opinion: I’m a big fan of note taking/information management apps. Those who know me, know I am devoted to Evernote. That being said, OneNote is a very similar app, but a great alternative for those looking for a different interface. The collage setup/page option can be very useful when planning a project. Like Evernote, it has a web clipper option for adding online content to your notes.

If you’re interested in learning more about what Evernote can do, check out the following blog post – Evernote and Getting Things Done

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6 February 2020

What to do when your routine falters




My three cats love their routine. Each day at 4:30 I get out the bowls and a can of food and we go through our steps. Murphy circles the kitchen island while I spoon out the food. Then we all go to the ‘feeding rug’ and set down the bowls in a very specific order. Ta da, dinner time!

Everything goes along smoothly as long as the routine is followed. But if dinner is late, or it’s that one time when Mimzy insisted on being fed in the hallway, then everything falls apart. There’s panic, crying, and running around the room like the sky is falling.

It can be like that for us, too. We’ve all got our routines. Those processes we follow that keep us organized and on top of our things. But life happens to all of us and it can throw us for a loop. It could be a family emergency, a change in job status, or even something seemingly unimportant like construction during our daily commute. 

Whatever it is that happens, we fall out of our routine and start to become disorganized. Piles begin to form on our desk and it just gets easier and easier to add to the mess, especially when your time is limited. Next thing you know it seems like everything is disorganized and there’s no way to get back to how it used to be.

Now is the time to call in help. 

I work with entrepreneurs who would consider themselves organized, once upon a time. But life happened, they fell out of a routine, and things got disorganized. That’s okay because it’s never a bad time to reassess your situation and reset your routines. 

My goal is to get you back to an organized way of life – a lifestyle that makes it easier to deal with life’s bumps and stumbles. If you’re ready to reset, give me a call.

If you are looking for tips to get back in order yourself, make sure you’re signed up for the Ilios Digital newsletter!
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23 January 2020

Papers – What to keep and what to toss




I still have my original birth certificate and social security card. They’re both worn with age and tucked away safely until needed. My old pay stubs from working at the bookstore? Those were tossed years ago along with old birthday cards from school friends. Grad school papers on my computer? Yep, still got those. Receipts from four years ago? Those are on my computer as well. 

However, holding on to things only increases the amount of clutter in your office and home. So what are you supposed to do? You can’t, and shouldn’t, keep everything. But how are you to know what stays and what goes?
It can be hard to know what to keep and what to let go of when it comes to your paperwork, especially when you are talking about digital documents. Yes, you could hang on to digital files longer since they appear to take up less space. But the question becomes, do you need to?  

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16 January 2020

First Choice, Last Step




Starting an organizing project? Got your eye on some pretty boxes and bins down at the Container Store? 

Wait!

Buying storage and organizing containers – bins and boxes and more – shouldn’t be your first step when it comes time to get organized. Instead, save that step till last. After all, how do you know what you need (containers) until you know what you have (stuff)?

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6 November 2019

Managing Tech/Life Balance




Look up the effect technology is having on our lives and chances are you’ll see this cartoon. It’s decrying how much time we spend on our devices, even when we’re with each other.

But why is that so bad? This picture is me and my husband nearly every night. After supper, we sit down in the living room and play on our computer (him), work (me), and watch TV together (kinda). And even though we spend a lot of time focused on our screens, we still talk…because we’re together, not off in our separate offices staring at our screens alone.

Is that a good example of tech/ life balance? Or is all tech bad when you’re with other people? Does it depend on the activity you’re doing? I’d love to know what you think!

17 October 2019

How To Stay On Top Of Your List




Today was grocery shopping day. I’d made a list of meals we could have during the week, cross-referenced that with a list of things I needed to get at the store, and off I went. Having just moved, I’m in the gradual process of restocking things like baking essentials and condiments. I’m also in the process of testing out several different grocery stores, so it’s hard to remember what I’ve bought from where.

You would think having a grocery list to follow would eliminate any confusion about what I actually had in my cupboards but nope. Just like everyone else, there is the grocery list and then there is all the other things you pick up that you forgot you needed. Do I have the sliced cheese I need for BBQ sliders? Probably not, because I didn’t like the options at Kroger. Cooking oil for the brownies? I remember looking at it, but did I pick any up?

Our brains weren’t designed to hold everything in memory, and it’s easy to forget what you’ve done or didn’t do. Email is like that too. You’ll be in the middle of writing an email to a colleague when you suddenly wonder…did I send a follow-up email to that prospective client last week? Then it’s back to the inbox to search for their email. Or back into your sent items to scan and scan and scan to see if you can find the reply. 

But instead of anxiety about not knowing if you’ve followed up or not, what if you could check your Waiting folder and quickly find out the status of your conversation? What if you had dealt with the prospective client email when it arrived? There’s an easier way to manage your email, and it’s through action folders and follow up folders.

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(For the record, I now have a lot of sliced cheese and still no cooking oil)

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