Leap Day – here’s that extra 24 hours you needed!

A leap year is a year in which an extra day is added to the calendar in order to synchronise it with the seasons. So how are you going to make the most of the extra 24 hours on Wednesday?

Asian Professional Organisers recommends using this valuable chunk of time wisely (See the link “The 10 Biggest Organizing Mistakes”, number 3) by making a start in getting organised. I can wager 7 out of 10 people included it as one of their New Year’s resolutions. Here are three simple tasks taking less than 15 minutes each that will propel you out of the clutter and chaos.

1. Conquer the Paperwork F.A.S.T: Despite computerisation, the bane of most offices is paper. Win the war on paperwork by following the F.A.S.T strategy. Go through each pile of paperwork and divide into stacks to File, Action now, Send to someone else or Trash. Take baby steps and invest just 15 minutes to whittle down a pile 10cm high. Never be tempted to have a “Don’t know/Maybe” stack as everything will end up here.

2. Adopt a healthy organising habit: Most people have the best intentions, but just don’t know how to become better organised. Here’s a practical start to creating a place for everything so that everything is in its place. Choose five frequently used items and decide on a permanent home for each (Keys on a hook next to front door, diary beside the telephone, stapler in top left drawer etc). Remember to return each item immediately after use to its designated spot until this becomes second nature and expand the routine to include another five items.

3. Eliminate your old emails: If you still have unread emails in your Inbox, chances are, several weeks into 2012, that you’ll never get round to them or they were never priority reading. Free up space in Outlook by creating an Archive folder “2011” under the File menu and set the “Before” date as 31 December 2011. In the “Browse” box, file these emails under a memorable name such as “Emails 2011”. Your Inbox will be much easier to handle, searching on recent items and backups will run much more quickly whilst the Search function will locate old messages.

Note: Inputting your instructions will be quick, but depending on the number of messages the entire archiving process may take a few hours, so leave this magic to work overnight.

Don’t be fooled by the calendar. There are only as many days in the year as you make use of. – Charles Richards.


Written by

Asian Professional Organisers is the first member in Singapore of the Australasian Association of Professional Organisers, serving clients in Singapore and Hong Kong. Georgina Wong started out as a professional event organiser before transferring her expertise to where it matters most - in the home and workplace. We offer all forms of organising from home staging of your property to workplace productivity and from wardrobe auditing to digital decluttering.