Tips

10 ways your rockstar assistant can make your life easier

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When you feel like your case of the Mondays happens every day of the week, you may be suffering from overwhelm. Whether you are just starting a business, running a large corporation, or somewhere in between, the key to minimizing overwhelm is in your office. Not sure what it is? The answer is simple, your assistant.

According to a Gallup study, 39% of business owners work over 60 hours a week. That’s 20 more hours a week than a normal employee.  But how do you cut back on the number of hours you work each week? You delegate to your rockstar assistant.

What a rockstar assistant can do for you

A rockstar assistant can do more than just answer the phone; instead they are an extension of the executive. They often handle all of the day-to-day work and problems in the office, but they can also manage how your work and personal life intermingle. Their goal is to make your life easier, but you will never feel the benefits if you don’t let them in and hand over control. Here are a few things your assistant should be doing for you:

 

Meeting  support

Whether you're leading or attending a meeting, you need support. Your assistant can help support you by preparing any paperwork and materials you need before your meeting. You can also have your assistant attend meetings and take notes for a debriefing when needed.

Inbox filter

How many hours a day do you spend reading, writing, and deleting email? Instead of ignoring your inbox when you’re busy, hand it over to your assistant. Create a system for your assistant to place emails that need your attention, but also empower them to respond to lesser important messages on your behalf.

Manage your schedule

From planning your meetings to your lunch, your assistant should manage your calendar. Always communicate any important dates or messages to your assistant and have them pencil you in. Giving up control of your calendar is stressful, but when managed successfully, it is a huge weight off of your shoulders.

Date planner

Never miss buying a gift or being at a family function when your assistant manages important dates. Hand over your personal calendar and have your assistant keep you informed when a special day is near. You can even send your assistant out to shop for gifts as needed.

Coordinate vendors

When your email isn’t working, or you need an important fix, your assistant should be there. When it comes to working with vendors and coordinating service, have your assistant schedule and meet with all service providers.

Office equipment aficionado

Instead of worrying about learning how to use all of the technology in the office, stick to the basics. Have your assistant learn how to use the equipment and even create easy-to-use training manuals. When you need to fax an important document, or have something scanned, delegate it to your assistant.

Organize your travel

When your meetings require travel, delegate the travel planning to your assistant. Have your assistant handle all of your flight and hotel booking and transportation needs. Before you leave, have your assistant program your transportation details into your favorite app.  If there is a chance your flight may be delayed, have your assistant monitor your travel so that they can make changes and reschedule as needed.

Personal errands

When you’re building a company, time is precious. Sometimes you may need to ask your assistant to handle personal errands or schedule household repairs. Don’t be afraid to ask your assistant to take care of these tasks while you focus on work.

Project finisher

Some projects don’t require you to complete them. Since your assistant is an extension of you, don’t be afraid to delegate some of the projects to them. When you hand over projects, make sure you communicate clearly what is needed and when it is due. Regularly follow-up on the progress of the projects so that you will know the status and can answer any questions that may arise.

Noted notary

Legal documents always require a notary. Having your assistant become a Notary Public in your state will save you a lot of time and added expenses.  

 

Learning curve

Your assistant is extremely important to your well-being and success, but training them isn’t always easy. That is where we come in. LifeSquire has created a professional assistant training program called LifeSquire Academy. When you send your assistant through this program, they not only learn the basics of how to be an assistant, but they will also learn how to meet and anticipate your needs, how to manage their time, how to create professional boundaries, and more. We feel these classes can take your assistant to rockstar level.  For more information, click here.

Need an assistant?

Did you know that it takes approximately 33 or more hours to find and place one employee? It could take even longer when you are looking for a certain set of skills. The time really adds up when you don’t find the perfect fit or the turnover gets high.

LifeSquire Connect goes beyond the typical cookie-cutter staffing agency and finds the perfect assistant (or any other support staff role) for you or your company. We find out what you need from the person in that role and customize our recruiting process to find you the perfect match.  You’re already busy without an assistant; you don’t need to add ‘hire an assistant’ to your to-do list. We can handle that for you. For more information, click here.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

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Tip Tuesday

Sometimes working with an assistant can be a struggle. We want to help make your working relationship better. Join our weekly Tip Tuesday email list by emailing info@lifesquire.com and letting us know you're interested.

16 tips for parents on how to make this school year the best

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From day trips to afternoons at the local waterpark, it can be hard to give up what summer break has to offer and get back into a school routine. But as the school year approaches, it is important to plan for more than just the first day of school. If you’re ready to have the best school year ever, follow our guide to get and keep your children school-ready.

Ease Into The First Day

The first day of school can be a challenge for you and your child. There is a lot of stress in starting a new year. Here are some tips to make your first day easier:

  • Get into a routine. Summer fun often includes late nights and later mornings, but as the alarm bell gets closer to ringing, it is important to be ready for it. You should start getting your child into their school routine at least two weeks before school starts. Read our post about how to get your child into their school routine easily.

  •  Organize school supplies. While you’re out school supply shopping, think about organization. It may seem weird, but sometimes parents just get the items on the list. Get all of the necessary supplies, but also consider getting pencil bags and containers to keep their supplies organized and easy to find. Also, open necessary supplies before sending your child to school.

  • Transportation. Before the first day, make sure you have a plan for getting your child to and from school. If they ride the bus, make sure you know where the bus stop is and what time it will arrive to pick your kids up. If you have someone taking your child to school and picking them up, make sure they know where the drop-off and pick-ups are located and the times for both. If you’re struggling to find someone to handle the transportation, contact LifeSquire.

  • Conquer first day jitters. No matter their age, your children may be nervous about starting a new school. Beat the first-day stress by going to the school beforehand. Show them how they will enter the school, where their classrooms are, and show them where places like the cafeteria and bathrooms are located. Also remind your child that everyone is nervous on their first day, even the teachers.

  • Storytime. If you feel your child is getting into the back-to-school blues, share your experiences. Tell your child stories about positive experiences you had during your school years. That will encourage and excite them about school.

 

Throughout The School Year

Even though the first day has passed, it is important to set your children up for success. Besides getting their quarterly report card and encouraging them to join school clubs, there are other things to encourage a school year full of learning. Here are our tips for ongoing success:

  • Activity Calendar. Your children will often be sent home with a schedule of activities throughout the year. In order to make sure that your child has a clean purple shirt on purple shirt day, create a calendar with all school events. An activity calendar will keep you from being caught off guard or missing any important events.

  • Snacks and meals. Children that eat a nutritious breakfast and have healthy snacks will be able to focus and function better at school and while at home. Plan out breakfast and snack options for your child during the week.

  • Have a lunch plan. It doesn’t matter if you want your children to eat lunch at school, you pack their lunches, or a mix of both, have a plan. Children are bound to not like every meal, so they will probably request a mix of both. To avoid a lunchless day, go through the schedule each week, and determine what your child likes. When packing lunches, follow our handy guide on how to make school lunches easier.

  • Late nights = struggles. Even through the sad puppy eyes, you have to be strong. Your children may beg and beg for another 30 minutes, but always stick to their bedtime schedule. Your child getting enough quality sleep is critical to their success in school. Always make sure they follow their nightly routine and get adequate sleep.

  • Buddy system. Encourage your child to become friends with another child that lives near you. The buddy system is important for walking to school and for waiting at bus stops. It also will make them more confident and comfortable starting and ending each school day.

  • Encourage reading. Even during the school season, you should encourage your child to read. Take them to the library regularly to pick out books. Set a book reading goal for the year and maybe a prize for accomplishing it. Do something that keeps them encouraged to explore the literary world.

 

Create Excellent Homework And Study Habits

We send our children to school so that they learn and grow into educated decision-makers. Unfortunately, with all the activities and goals you and your child set, they may not have adequate study time. Here are some tips to ensure your children get the best study time possible:

  • Study space. Create a homework and study space that includes supplies your child will need. Make sure it has limited distractions and have them do their homework and studying there each night. Their work space is key to effective studying.

  • Ample time. Make sure when scheduling activities after school, that your child has ample study time. Don’t rush them through homework to make it to their little league game.

  • Technology. Create a household rule that all electronic distractions (i.e. phone, television, and more) stay off during study time. If your child needs to use the Internet or computer for homework, supervise them to make sure they stay on track.

  • Know the due dates. Children can be forgetful or not know when their homework is due. Make sure that you know their assignment deadlines and make them visible for your child. Include a paper calendar in their study space and write due dates for each assignment. Teach your child how to prioritize their homework.

  • The struggle is real. If you see your child struggling in a particular subject, don’t let it continue. Schedule a meeting to talk to their teacher about their struggles and get recommendations for people that can help them get back on track. It is OK for your child to need a tutor.

 

If you find yourself overwhelmed during the school year, reach out to LifeSquire. We provide quality personal assistants that will purchase school supplies, provide safe transportation to and from school and other events, meal and snack prep, and more.

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

9 tips to keep your pets summer safe

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With warmer temperatures outside, you’ll likely want to get outdoors and play with your pets. But did you know that the dog days of summer can put your pets in a furry situation?

As the sun beats down this summer, make sure you keep your pet safe from the elements. Here are 9 tips to keep your pet safe this summer:

Water and shade

Playtime can be dangerous without plenty of water and shade when it is hot outdoors. It is important to remember that your pets are thirstier than you are. When they play out in the heat, they will need more water to avoid dehydration. If your pets have dry gums or become excessively drooly, they may be dehydrated.

Having a shady spot also will help your pet stay more comfortable in the sun. While your pets love to sunbathe, too much direct sunlight can cause heatstroke and dehydration.

Understand heatstroke

Did you know that your pet can also suffer from heatstroke?  You probably already know that dogs and cats do not sweat, so instead, they drink water and pant to bring down their body temperature. If their temperature stays too high, they will suffer from heatstroke. It is important to watch for the signs so that you can get your pet help.

Signs of heatstroke:

  • Heavy panting

  • Dry or bright red gums

  • Thick drool

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Wobbly legs

If your pet shows these signs, move your pet to a cool place and give them water. You can also put a damp towel on their body to help cool them off while you call your vet. Just don’t put your pet in cold water, that could lead to shock.

Paw patrol

Be mindful of the temperature of the roads and concrete when walking your dog during summer months. They can get really hot and burn your dog’s paws. A great way to check if the roads are too hot is to put the back of your hand on the cement. If it is too hot for you, it is too hot for them. If you would like to go on summer walks without burn fears, consider getting your pup some shoes.

Swimming safety

Dogs love to swim and keep cool in the water. If you plan to take your pet to the pool, lake, or ocean this summer, consider getting them a life vest. Even the best swimmers can struggle with getting out of the water or currents. Think safety first when it comes to water time.

Safely keep bugs away

Rain and heat are great for things we hate, bugs. There is always the fight against fleas and ticks, but other summer bugs can carry diseases. Make sure you treat your pets against fleas and ticks; we recommend using a Seresto flea and tick collar or using a heartworm pill that also controls fleas and ticks like Sentinel, but always check with your vet before starting any new treatment.

Also, be cautious when using pesticides and fertilizer on your lawn. There are chemicals in some of these products that can be toxic to your pets. Keep your lawn in pet play areas cut short to help keep bugs at bay. If you have to use pesticides, find ones that are safer for pets.

Never leave your pet in the car

Your dog probably jumps around excited when you mention a car ride. While it is fun to take your pet with you on the go, never leave them in the car. Even 70 degrees outdoors can be dangerous for your pet. Your car can heat up to 90 degrees in 10 minutes. If you have to leave your pet in the car, cracking the window isn’t enough. Leave the air conditioner on and blowing to keep them safe.

Antifreeze watch

When cars run and heat up during the summer, they can leak antifreeze and leave puddles in driveways and on the street. If you take your pets out for walks during the summer months or even trips around town, make sure you keep your pet away from the puddles. Antifreeze is toxic and potentially deadly for pets.

Sun protection

You put sunscreen on yourself to protect against the sun, but did you know that some dogs need sunscreen too? Often, dogs with short hair and pink skin are susceptible to sunburn. Check with your vet to see if your dog needs extra protection and how to apply it safely.

Pet care

Beach dreaming and travel can keep you away from your pet this summer. When it comes to pet care, make sure you hire someone you can trust to watch them while you’re away. LifeSquire offers pet and house sitting to make your overnight stays a breeze. Contact us for more information .

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

15 tips & tricks to move like a pro

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Congratulations on finding your new home! Next comes the fun part, the actual move.

Now that you know you will be moving, it is time to start getting those boxes and packing away your items. You know that you should pack fragile items together, use packing tape instead of masking tape, and to label your boxes, but there is more. We thought of some unique moving tips and wanted to share them with you.

Utility move

Avoid a weekend in the dark without water by scheduling a transfer as soon as possible. It can take a few days to set-up electric, water, gas, and more during your move, so when you know your move date, call your utility companies.

Overnight ready

Odds are, after your move you won’t want to start unpacking boxes to find your essentials. Instead of searching for your toothbrush and favorite pajamas, pack an overnight bag. Keep your overnight bag in the car with you, and you’ll be able to say goodnight without hunting through boxes.

New home prep

If possible, try to get to your new place and clean the kitchen and bathroom before you move.  Try to clean more if you can, but those two rooms are the most important. Also, set-up your bathroom with your shower curtain, clean towels, and don’t forget the toilet paper.

Pack ahead

Packing can be stressful, but it is even more stressful to pack on the day of your move. Don’t be extra sleepy on moving day because you stayed up all night packing. Be ready for your move in advance.

Leave the drawers

Instead of emptying all of the drawers, pull them out and wrap them with saran wrap. You’ll save box space and can avoid having to unpack and reorganize them.

Create a number system

When packing your boxes, also create a numbered spreadsheet. Label the box with the number and put a list of items for that number on a spreadsheet. This will keep you from having to dig through every bathroom box to find your hairdryer.

Purge unwanted items

When packing, don’t just throw everything into a box thinking you will donate items as you unpack. It is easier to discard and donate unwanted items before you move. As you pack, decide if you really need the items you are boxing up.

Bag it up

When taking down TV mounts, removing doors, or other hardware, make use of sandwich bags. Put all of the nuts and bolts in the bag, use a Sharpie (https://www.sharpie.com/) to label the bag, and tape it to the item.

Take a photo

Before removing the cords from appliances or technology, snap a photo. It will be easier for you to plug the cords in the right spots later if you can glance at a guide.

Use what you have

Make use of baskets, trunks, hampers, luggage, and more for packing. Not sure you can carry a box of heavy books? Use a rolling suitcase to pack your favorite reads.

Color coding

Color is your friend when it comes to moving. You can write the room each box goes to on the box, or you can use easy to see color. Grab a few rolls of different color tape and add it to the box. Write the name of the room on the tape just to be safe.

Schedule a pick-up

At least a week or two before you move, schedule a nonprofit to come pick-up your unwanted items. It will keep you from having to load up the items and take them over for donation. Not sure who to donate to? We recommend Focus On Home.

Be a good host

If your friends and family are helping you move, make sure you have plenty of water, drinks, and snacks. Also, opt to buy pizza for your helpers. If you’ve hired movers, it is still nice to offer treats and drinks.

Change your address

Don’t forget that you need to update your address. Have your mail forwarded by USPS, update your address on all of your credit cards, store accounts, magazine subscriptions, PayPal, your bank, and driver’s license. Try to get this done within two weeks of moving.

Schedule LifeSquire to organize

Now that you are in your new home full of new spaces, it is time to get organized. Schedule LifeSquire to come organize your new home. We specialize in organization and can set-up any room or closet for easy use.

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For more moving tips, see our previous post 8 ways to make moving a breeze.

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

10 tips to get you prepared for your summer vacation

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As the weather heats up, you’re likely beach dreaming. But before you can put your toes in the sand, you have to prepare for your trip. Forgetting to do something as little as taking out the trash could dampen your vacation.

With all the excitement of exploring somewhere new or returning to your favorite place, you can often forget some essential tasks before you board your jet plane. From packing to preventing a moldy fridge, LifeSquire is sharing some tips on how to get you ready for your summer trip.

 

  • Check your passport. If you have summer travel plans, don’t forget to check the expiration date on your passport. Don’t wait until you’re about to board the plan to renew. It often takes longer during summer months to receive your updated passport in the mail.

  • Book your pet sitter. Don’t forget about your furbabies! Make sure you schedule a pet sitter in advance to care for your pets. LifeSquire offers pet and home sitting, contact us (https://www.lifesquire.com/contact) to schedule.

  • Call your bank. When traveling, make sure you call your bank and let them know when you are traveling and where you are going. Don’t get locked out of your funds because you didn’t make the call.

  • Stop your mail. While you’re away, have USPS (https://holdmail.usps.com/holdmail/) stop delivering your mail to your house. Alternatively, you can have your LifeSquire bring in your mail when we check on your house.

  • Skin protection. Your skin doesn’t want to go to war with the sun. Now is the time to stock up on sunscreen before you spend your time soaking up the Vitamin D.

  • The great purge. Before you put the luggage in the car, make sure you won’t come home to refrigerator mold. Check expiration dates and remove everything that will go bad before you get home. You won’t want to clean up right after your trip.

  • Copies, copies, copies. Even if you don’t like paper, you should make copies of important documents before traveling. Consider making copies of your confirmation numbers, itineraries, passports, credit card information, insurance cards, and emergency medical information. These can come in handy if you happen to run into any problems.

  • Make a list. When packing right before your trip, it is easy to forget essential items. Before you pack, make a checklist so that you don’t forget your most important items. Don’t forget your phone charger and portable battery!

  • Roll your clothes. Roll all of your clothes for maximum luggage capacity and minimal wrinkles. If you don’t like to roll, you can also use compression bags and roll the air out by hand.

  • Prepare your house.  Close the curtains and blinds, set the automatic lights, leave a radio playing, unplug appliances, and set the alarm before you leave.

 

Not having to worry about forgotten items or coming home to horrid smells will help you enjoy your time away from home. If you need help planning and preparing for your vacation, LifeSquire is here.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

8 ways to put the fun in summer break

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As the school doors close for summer, you’ll be the main component for entertainment for the next few months. As the days go by, you might hear the words, “I’m bored,” come out of your kid’s mouths. Keep the boredom away by preparing for a fun summer break. Here are some tips on how to get ready:

 

  • Annual passes. From the local zoo to amusement parks, several places offer annual passes. Consider purchasing some passes for fun activities throughout the summer.  Also, check to see what summer events those places have and put them in your calendar.

  • Summer camp.  There are a ton of different summer camps available, but they usually fill up fast. If you’re sending your children to summer camp, get them enrolled as soon as possible. Once enrolled, make sure they have all of the necessary supplies to have a good time at camp. Also, get your children any identification they may need for the travel.

  • Keep track of get-togethers. Summer is the perfect time for families and friends to plan get-togethers, reunions, and parties. When the invites come in, make sure you mark your calendar. You don’t want to miss out on the fun. Get your kids excited for the parties by having them help prepare food and other party favors.

  • Book challenge. Explore distant lands in your own living room. Inspire your children to read this summer by creating your own book challenge. Take a weekly trip to the library to check out a new book. Once they read a pre-set amount of books, reward them.

  • Swim like a fish. With warmer weather comes water activities. Make sure your children know proper pool safety and how to swim before summer is in full swing. Enroll your children in swim lessons, so that pool parties are more fun than terrifying.

  • Travel local. Take short road trips to state parks and local hotspots. Pack a picnic for even more excitement on the road. Before you go, also prepare an emergency kit, bring extra clothes, and don’t forget the water.

  • Learn something new. Consider enrolling your children in some classes this summer to learn something new. Art classes, cooking classes, or music lessons can keep your children entertained and still keeps them learning.

  • Activity books. If you’re worried about the long summer break, consider getting some age-appropriate school activity books to keep their school content fresh. Set aside some time daily to work on these books.

 

Summer is a great time for your kids to keep learning and try new things. If you find yourself struggling to create activities or get them from one place to the other, LifeSquire can help. We offer children transportation services and creativity.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

9 ways to get your home ready for the summer heat

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While it may seem like the most important thing you need to do to prepare for summer is to pick out the best sunscreen, there is more. As the temperature heats up, your home should be ready to beat the heat. No one wants to come home to a scorching home, an algae-filled pool, or a cracked foundation. Besides getting a standard A/C tune-up and the regular home things you do, here are some other ways to make sure you stay cool this summer:

 

  • Gutter gleam. Your gutters are clogged from all of the leaves that fell during the fall. Keep your gutters from overflowing by having the debris removed.

  • Shingled out. Cold winter temperatures and spring storms can take a toll on your shingles. Avoid finding leaky spots by having your roof inspected. Get any repairs completed as soon as possible to keep your home in tip-top shape.

  • The white stuff. When your windows let in air, your air conditioner has to work harder to keep your home cool. Have the LifeSquire handyman add a fresh coat of caulking around your windows to beat the leaky window heat.

  • Water more than the plants. When the ground under your home dries out from summer heat, it can mess up your home’s foundation. During dry summer days, make sure to water your home’s foundation at least once a week. When in drought, water the foundation several times a week.

  • Fix your tools. During the summer months, you break out a lot of tools and equipment. Have the tune-up on your lawnmower taken care of. Clean your grill before your next meal. Have your pool inspected so that you can spend the summer in the cool water. Whatever tools you use, give them a check before they are regularly used.

  • Waterworks. Freezing temperatures can wreak havoc on your plumbing. It is always a good idea to have a plumber come out for a pipe inspection to stop and prevent any leaks.

  • Trim around the bushes. Your trees will bloom and grow all season. Have them trimmed to avoid problems with power lines and other objects that don’t need to be consumed by branches.

  • Streak-free. After the winter weather and spring pollen, your windows aren’t exactly spotless. Book window cleaners to come out and put the shine back in your glass.

  • The cool down. Your attic holds a lot of heat. Before the temperature gets too bad, have your insulation checked. Add extra insulation to your attic to help beat the heat.

 

When you get all of the maintenance and chores out of the way, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the summer months. If you don’t have time to complete them all, LifeSquire can help. 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

10 quick and easy ways to practice self-care every day

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With the everyday hustle and bustle of life, it’s easy to neglect yourself. After spending extra hours in the office, your nights end up looking like a whirlwind of activity from cooking to wrangling children into bed by bedtime. And after all that, your bed and Netflix look more and more attractive.

While it is extremely important to get those tasks done on a daily basis, it is even more important to make time for some self-care. Now you’re probably thinking, I don’t have the time to spend days at the spa or going on regular shopping sprees, but self-care is more than just an outing.  Here are some self-care ideas to add to your daily to-do list:

Write about it

No matter how bad your day has been, there will always be something that makes you feel grateful.  So whether it is the fact that you are still breathing or you won the lottery, grab a journal and write down five positive things in your life each day. When you write down positive things in your life, it puts more emphasis on the things you are grateful for instead of the stressors in your life. Focus on the good.

A positive morning

Start every day with something positive. Whether you read inspirational quotes, stories or you indulge in your favorite coffee drink, try to start each morning with something that makes you feel good. You can do this while sipping your morning coffee and not have to add any extra time to your already busy morning.

Give back

If you want a quick positivity boost, do something for someone else. Volunteer once a month or help a friend or loved one out with a project they can’t do alone. Sharing your talents and giving back to the community is good for your soul.

Go on a technology detox

In most situations, you can’t imagine turning your cellphone off and taking a break from social media, but sometimes one way to make the craziness of the world stop turning is to take a break from the center of it. As much as you love social media, it can play a real role in your mood. Don’t be afraid to take a break, even if it is just for one hour.

Just say no

To all of the overachievers out there, it is okay to say no when someone asks to make plans with you. We often find ourselves wanting to do more than we are actually capable of doing. So while you don’t have to give a solid no, don’t be afraid to ask for that night out for a later date.

Playtime with pets

Pets have this furry covered way of soothing the soul. When you spend time petting and playing with your pets, you’ll easily forget the stresses of the day. If you don’t have a pet, visit your local rescue for all the playtime you can handle.

Have a self-date

It may sound a little weird, but you should always date yourself. Spend an hour alone doing something that feeds your soul. Maybe it is taking the time to read that new book you’ve been dying to start or relaxing in a bubble bath with a glass of wine. Do something that is for you and only you.

Just dance

Turn on your favorite song, and dance like no one is watching. Not only is music good for your soul, but dancing can put a little bounce in your step. Never deny yourself a mini dance party.

Take a road trip

There are likely some beautiful places within a short drive of you. Do some research for local sites to see and plan a short day trip over the weekend. So when the weather is nice, load up the car with your family or some close friends and hit the road.

Get in the right mindset

Download a meditation app on your phone and start your mornings with some peaceful relaxation before hitting the stress-filled traffic on your way to work.  Better yet, get to work a little early and listen to your meditation app before heading into the office. You’ll be a lot calmer, and it will be easier to start tackling your day.

A little goes a long way

Self-care is vital to your well-being. It doesn’t have to be an all-day affair to be considered self-care.   Just do a little something every day of the week, and you’ll quickly feel that stress fog lift. Make sure you add self-care to your to-do list daily and make it a priority in your life. 

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

7 home organization tips to conquer the clutter war

7 home organization tips to conquer the clutter war

Did you start this year off by watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix? We did too. You may want to immediately start wanting to find out what sparks your joy, but moving too quickly and taking on too much too fast will turn into organization overload.  Here are some of our best tips to set you up for home organization success:

Start in one place

You may want to grab the trash bags and embrace the minimalist life, but it is important to start in one place. Instead of creating a huge mess by tackling every room at once, pick one place in one room to start. Once that spot has become an organization masterpiece, move on to the next.

Visibility, Accessibility, Flexibility

The most important concepts to remember when organizing are items should be visible, accessible, and flexible. Choose organization containers that are clear and easily labeled to make it easy to identify the contents. You create accessibility by prioritizing the need of the contents. Put the less used items higher on the shelf than every-day items. When you decide on your storage systems, pick containers that can adapt and grow as your needs change. Make sure all of your containers are flexible and able to solve a variety of home organization problems.

Maximize wasted space

Cabinets are an organizers dream come true, but most homes don’t come fully equipped with enough of these little storage miracles.  Luckily there is a solution to the lack of cabinet space, and that is to make use of wasted space. Take time to think about places that can be transformed into organizational havens. Some places you should use include under beds, over and behind doors, closet floors, and more.

Go container crazy

Containers not only help keep your items in one place, they can also dress up a shelf while keeping your items hidden. Make use of baskets, boxes, trays, and more when you’re organizing. We recommend taking a trip to The Container Store to get all the containers you need and more. Variety is key.

Say yes to color

Color coding your life is more than just creating a perfect rainbow in your closet. It doesn’t matter what room you are trying to organize; you can enhance it with color. A great way to make use of color is clearing up paper clutter with a color-coded filing system. You can also use color to help your kids keep their toys in place. If you have multiple children, give each child a colored bin for storage of their toys. You can also use multiple colored bins to organize by type of toy. Never say no to color.

The 2-year rule

Becoming a clothing and shoe hoarder is easy. When it comes to clearing out your closet, we suggest the 2-year rule. If you haven’t worn the clothing or shoes in the last two years, it is probably time to donate it. Once those clothes are out of the way, go through your remaining items and separate them into three piles: keep, discard, and donate.   

Give back

Over the past eight years, LifeSquire personal assistants have been organizing homes and offices throughout the Oklahoma City metro area.  We have helped people minimalize and enhance their homes through organizational bliss. In doing so, we have donated thousands of items to different local nonprofits. This year, LifeSquire has partnered with local nonprofit, Focus On Home.  LifeSquire wants to bless this nonprofit with donations from our organization projects. If you’d like to help us bless families in need, contact us about your home good donations after you’ve minimalized.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

Why an organized house will make you happier, reduce stress

Why an organized house will make you happier, reduce stress.jpg

Imagine this. You’ve spent a long, hard day at work and you’re ready to come home to relax and kick off your shoes.  You walk in the door of your home and see piles of mail, books in disarray, dirty dishes, and a pile of laundry on the bed. It gets even worse, you’re looking for your newest book and can’t find it. You also can’t find your favorite house slippers. Your home is an unorganized mess, and nothing has a proper home.

We all know that you suffer from stress from finances, your job, and other things happening in your life. When you come home, you want to relax, but when you live in a poorly decorated, extremely cluttered, and disorganized house, it is nearly impossible to relax. Disorganization can lead to reduced happiness levels and increased stress. This article tells why living this way only adds to your stress.

Clutter brings on the stress

It’s hard to imagine that a cluttered house can bring on stress, but it can. When home, you will likely remain in a state of overwhelm as your brain takes in all of the information around you. Once your brain has processed the clutter, you’ll quickly realize how much work you have to do on your home. The more mess you see, the higher the stress levels. When your home is organized, and each item has a home, you will save time looking for items, but also you will feel a sense of peace in your nice calming home.

The social butterfly

Do you like to host social gatherings but avoid them because of a cluttered house? When you take the time to organize, you’ll be more excited about having friends and family over. Those Sunday family dinners and wine down Wednesday social settings will be more exciting than dreadful.

The last-minute visitor

Not everyone sticks by the ‘contact first before showing up at your house’ rule, and you may have an unexpected doorbell ringer. Other times your kids beg to have friends over after school without notice. The last-minute visitor is a real obstacle when your home is an unorganized mess. Once you’re aware of your visitor, you’ll begin to feel your stress levels increase. You’ll likely see things you find so horribly placed and wonder if your guest notices them as well. While they probably don’t care about what kind of condition your house is in, you will feel like they do.

Increased exercise

What? An organized house can increase your exercise? The answer is, yes. How? The biggest barrier to living a healthy lifestyle is a lack of time. As adults, we have a lot on our plates and gym time often gets put on the back burner. When you are living an organized life, you will have more free time to take that spin class or yoga class you’ve had your eye on. You won’t be coming home to cleaning and organization projects instead.

Fewer family conflicts

Have you ever gotten into an argument over the location of an item that seems lost? You have one place in mind for that object and your spouse or other family member has another. When that item is needed and cannot be found, this may create and amplify a family conflict. When everything has a place, the chance of arguments happening because  you can’t find your keys, your favorite pair of shoes, or even your tax documents will significantly decrease.

How do you fix it?

Now that you know why you need to organize your house, you may not know where to start. You’ll start with going through your items and donating what you don’t need. From there, you find containers and places to put items that are left.

You can spend your evenings and weekends taking trips to The Container Store and embark on a mission to organize your house, but what if you don’t have time? This is where LifeSquire steps in. We are professional organizers and can take your house from mess to success. If you’d like information about our organization services, email info@lifesquire.com.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager