Minute by minute

my thoughts on making the most out of all of life's minutes…


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Pick me! Pick me! Pick me!

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Today is Election Day in Washington State.  It is our primary.  I voted.  I sent my ballot in last week.

I had a thought…..

Do candidates inundate your streets with their signs like this?

Does it ever remind you of Donkey from Shrek?

It does me…..

 

 

 

Happy Tuesday Everyone.  Don’t forget to vote!

 

~Amy

 

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Tips on Tuesdays….change your clothes

How many times does this happen to you….

You wake up, set your workout gear aside and tell yourself “I am going to workout this afternoon.”

Then you go to work, come home and say “I’ll workout after dinner.

Then you sit down and say “I’ll workout after this one show.

And then you go to bed and say “I’ll workout in tomorrow.

A whole day has passed and you didn’t get your workout in.

How can you change that – – change your clothes.

The first thing to do if you have an afternoon workout planned is to change your clothes.

By changing from your work or daytime attire into your gym shorts and sports bra, it sets you up for your workout.   It reminds you that you are planning on going for that run or that walk or that pressing play on that DVD.  It motivates you to stay focused and  then there is one less step to getting yourself out the door.

This really works!

In fact, I’m sitting here at 5:20 this morning as I write this.  My normal routine is to get up and read and write blogs for about an hour and then workout before it is time to wake the boys and get rolling on our day.  The days I change into my workout clothes (and even put my shoes on) are the days that it is much easier to transition from working to my workout.  But on those days when I stay in my PJ’s and work and read….it is much harder to get that workout in, instead I typically work too long and run out of time, and I find myself saying “I need to go change….”

Give it a try.  Do it today.  Report back tomorrow – did it help get that workout in?

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!

~Amy

PS – we’re half way through my May challenge of selling 100 copies of my eBook, Making Time for Dinner.  Won’t you help me – buy your copy today.


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Tips on Tuesday – Birthday Cards

Happy May!

Don’t you love receiving a birthday card?  I do!  I love seeing all the cards displayed across our mantle and I keep them up there for a couple of weeks until I take them down and tuck them away.

I think the art of sending birthday cards has fallen by the wayside with technology and hectic schedules.  But if you love receiving cards, I’m sure people would love to receive one from you.

And it is really quite easy to do.  And it takes just a little bit of planning.

Use the first day of each month as your jumping off point.  On this day, sign, seal, address each card you wanting to send out.  Write the date in the spot where the stamp will go.  When the time gets close, place a stamp over the date and stick it in the mail.

If you prefer to send eCards, many of these have a time set option where you can  put the exact date of delivery.

Then plan ahead for next month.   Make a list of whose birthdays are coming up and stock up on cards.  Then you’ll be ready for next month.

Over time this will become your habit and you’ll feel good about remembering your friend’s special days.

Happy Tuesday!

~Amy


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Tips on Tuesdays – – 25 ways to motivate your kids to clean up

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a blog about The Five Dollar Vacation.    One of the comments I received from a reader named Katha told about how she uses quarters to motivate her kids to clean up.

The concept is really quite simple and I have to say…really quite brilliant.

If you are tired of nagging your kids to clean up their mess, sprinkle some quarters in with the mess…while they are cleaning up they collect the quarters and place them in a jar.  Once the jar is full, they get a treat of some sort…maybe an ice cream, a rented movie, etc.

I would suggest not saving the quarters to buy more toys…that seems like a new toy will only add to the cleaning up issue.   Instead, reward them with an experience.

I’d love to hear thoughts on this idea.  What other ways do you use to motivate your kids without nagging?

Hope your day is great!

~Amy

 


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Tips on Tuesdays – When it comes to advertising….ask!

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Here’s a question for all my small business owner readers.

Do you advertise? 

Here are a couple follow up questions:

  • If not, why not?
  • If so, do you know what works for you and what doesn’t?

One of the questions I ask whenever I am conducting a Time and Energy Audit with someone is about advertising and how it is working for them.  I’m always so surprised to learn that:

 

  • Yes – poeple do advertise.  But no – they don’t know which advertising practice is working best for them.

It is really very simple…ASK!  Anytime you are contacted by a new client or customer, ask them where did they hear about you?  Same thing goes anytime you run a specail or host an event, ask every person “how did you hear about this event?”

That’s step one.  The next step is to keep track of the answers.  This can be as simple as keeping a tick chart – – for every advertising option given, that one gets a little tick.  Then it is just a matter of tallying up the totals over a set period of time.

If you different advertising but in the same genre – like you are running an ad in the different newspapers in your area, dig deeper.  Ask “which paper did you find my ad?”

Finally, if you get a referral from a named customer, a handwritten thank you goes a long way.

Advertising takes money and effort.  Make sure yours is working correctly for you.  Analyze your data after a set amount of time to determine what works.  Those that don’t generate a lot of leads, stop using them.  Those that do bring in the business, increase your efforts there.

I’m available to help audit your advertising stragety  – give me a call if you’d like to chat.  (This phone conversation is 100% free – leave me a comment with your email address so we can connect.)

Happy Tuesday!

~Amy


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Tips on Tuesdays – Sticky Calendars

Check out the following products and consider the many different ways you can implement them into your daily and weekly or yearly routine to help you keep on track and get things done.

Weekly Sticky Notes

I love these – use one for on your desk and stick it on your computer monitor, use one for the family and put appointments and field trip reminders on each appropriate day, use one for your team at work to announce meetings and deadlines and days off too.  I really love the idea of assigning days to each of your “to-do” tasks.  

Weekly Sticker Calendar:   

 

Same as above  – only bigger and color coded.   Assign each block to a family member for daily chores, create a menu for the week, keep track of different projects and deadlines.  I see lots of uses for this one too.

 

Yearly Planning

This is a great way to plan out the year and have it available all at one glance.  Great for families for gifts, vacations, home projects.  Great for work schedules and deadlines.  I love color coding of different sticky notes to represent each activity.  And how satisfying will it feel to rip off those sticky notes once the project is completed?

 

 

 

It’s all about the Sticky Note Love today!  Happy Tuesday!

~Amy

 

 


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Tips on Tuesdays – Popsicle sticks

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Today’s Tip – Popsicle sticks?  

 

The other day I was volunteering in my son’s second grade classroom.  I was working off on the side of the classroom and the teacher was working on a worksheet with the entire class.  I noticed she used popsicle sticks marked with each student’s name to keep track of whom she had called on to answer her questions.  How brilliant is that?

I love this idea – by picking a popsicle stick with a kid’s name on it – she keeps it fair.  With this system, she calls on her students an equal amount of time because she simply rotates though the sticks and starts over.

It got me thinking – could this system be used in different situations?

Here’s what I came up with –

  • Write names of games and activities on sheets of paper to combat the “I’m Bored” comments that see to happen by 9:30am on Saturday mornings.   Set the rule that anytime you want your children to play a game or do an activity, they draw one of the suggestions from the bag – and then they have to do what is on the slip of paper.
  • Similar ideas for date night suggestions.  Brainstorm ideas and then pick from a jar and enjoy some special time with your Honey.
  • Keep track of your employees or clients and how you recognize and reach out to them.  Write a note of encouragement or thanks by randomly picking one each week.
  • Submit some of your favorite charities to the jar and chose one each month to read more about and possibly donate money or volunteer your time.
  • Tired of the same old workout routine?  Write different activities, classes or jogging routes – pick one at the beginning of each workout and it takes the guessing out of “what do I do today”.
  • Want to try new recipes?  Keep printed recipes in a pile and then shuffle them around like a card dealer, face down  – this randomly select your next dinner.
I love the idea of brainstorming at one time and then using this system to take the thinking and guess work out of trying to come up with an idea of what to do – when the pressure is on.  

As I think about it – the ideas for this system are endless.  And I love the idea of popsicle sticks because you can use them over and over without them getting wornout like a piece of paper would from being handled so much.

Today’s Question what other ideas could the popsicle stick system work, be it personal, professional, or other?  Today’s question has a prize – the third person to submit an idea gets an email copy of my e-book “What’s for Dinner.”  And yes – you can submit ideas – one and two and be the third person.

Happy Tuesday – ~Amy