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Overwhelmed? Try 15 Minutes

One of my clients struggles with keeping her desk organized. It is located next to the kitchen, near where the kids make art and practice music. It frequently becomes the dumping ground for items when she is in a hurry or can’t make a decision on something. She can frequently find something she would rather do than deal with her cluttered desk.

“Let’s try an experiment. How about working on it for 5 minutes?” I asked.

“Oh, okay” she relents.

I set the timer and told her to go as fast as possible for 5 minutes. She quickly grabs items one by one and made a decision. Some items needed to be returned to other rooms so I suggested putting them in the doorway for later putting away. Many items needed a quick glance and then ended up in recycle.

When the timer ended, she asked for 5 more minutes. So, I set the timer and said “Go!”

She quickly gathered “like with like”, filed a few documents and asked me to sign a card in my best little kid handwriting so she could send a card (her daughters were in school). Timer went off.

“Really? I think your timer is not working. That could not have been 5 minutes already! I want 5 more!” The last photo shows the results of a total of 15 minutes. What have you been putting off that could use 15 minutes of your time?

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