While some people like making New Year’s Resolutions, I love spring cleaning. There is something about putting away the winter clothes and opening up the house after a long winter that makes me feel fresh and new. That desire for renewal touches every aspect of my life, including work. Here are 50 ways to clear out the cobwebs and tackle the rest of the year like a boss.
Make a Not-to-do list.
- Review commitments- Are you participating in activities you are no longer passionate about? If it doesn’t feed your spirit, cut it. Time is precious and life is too short to do stuff you don’t really care about.
- Check your time allocation– Remember the Pareto Principle 20% of your activities yield 80% of your return. Are you spending time with the wrong people? Doing the wrong work? With the wrong clients?
3. Plan your vacation– Everyone needs something to look forward to. Imagine if this image of the Rockhouse Hotel in Negril Jamaica was your screensaver? With motivation like this, what work crisis couldn’t you tackle?
4. Plan dinner parties- It’s important to make time to hang out with friends and family. All too often, life squeezes them out. They feed and revive us. Lay out a gourmet spread of just make a big pot of chili. It’s the time that counts.
5. Celebrate your birthday- Do something super fun this year.
6. Schedule Massages/ Spa Treatments– Self care is critical. Put it on your calendar. Soothe might be able to help.
7. Put family time on your calendar– School events, brunch with your mother, date night. Don’t miss it.
8. Plan something fun– Mud Run, Bruno Mars concert, Rattlesnake Roundup, Quilt Show, Crawfish Festival, Monster Truck Show, Boston Marathon, Beautycon, whatever you love. Gather with a group of like minded folks and get your celebration on.
Tame your email.
9. Unsubscribe from emails you never read- You know you are getting too many emails. Cut the clutter.
10. Delete unwanted emails– There are few things more satisfying than an empty email box. Set aside a few blocks of time each day to delete all those emails taking up space in your box.
11. File the contents of emails you have received– The pictures, receipts, articles etc. have a much better chance of being seen if you file them in a place you can find them when you need them.
12. Set up rules in your email client to file/ segregate emails- You love every word Seth Godin says, but want to schedule a time to read all of his emails once a week when you have a quiet moment. send them to one folder you can access at your convenience.
Update your calendar.
13. Put Weddings, Anniversaries and Birthdays on your calendar– You know they are coming. Make them special. Pre-order gifts. Plan surprises. Make them count.
14. Make your doctor appointments– All of them
15. Make dentist appointments- The White strips aren’t enough. Go get your teeth cleaned.
16. Make workout appointments with yourself– Nothing makes you happier than good health. Get a trainer if you need one. You’re worth it.
Commit to Learning.
17. Select conferences you plan on attending this year– Events like Collision and SXSW keep your skills sharp.
18. Select books, webinars, thought leaders you want to be exposed to this year.
19. Register for a class– Online or offline. Keep learning.
20. Hire a coach.
21. Try a virtual guru site like Clarity to get advice on topics you’re stumped on
22. Find a mentor. Don’t make these mistakes if you find one.
23. Subscribe to WatchHerWork.TV– Take advantage of hundreds of virtual mentors.
Polish off your public persona.
24. Refresh your resume– Make sure you update LinkedIn too.
25. Take a new professional photo
26. Update social media profiles– picture, bio,
27. Make glam apps for the rest of the year- Nails, haircuts, color: Get the appointment times you want in advance by planning
28. Take poorly fitting or damaged clothes to the tailor
29. Repair your shoes at the cobbler– A few dollars can breathe new life into your favorite shoes
30. Update your wardrobe– A personal shopper may be able to help.
31. Review your vendors– Housekeepers, car repair, dry cleaner, lawn care… Are they doing a good job? Have their prices crept up? Take a look.
32. Source new vendors– Ask a friend or check on review sites like Yelp and Angie’s List.
33. Try new apps– There are great service apps like Taskrabbit, Instacart, Favor that will run errands for you.
34. Try Upwork– Digital tasks, virtual assistants, financial projections and powerpoint design, are just a few of the tasks you can get done on by freelancers on this platform.
Clean up your phone
35. Delete unused apps
36. Group apps by category- Categories like Productivity, Travel, Finance, Social Media can help bring order from chaos.
37. Make sure all your updates are up-to-date
38. Update Contacts– You have Harry;s number from 3 years ago and Jill moved to California last year. Let’s get those updated and let’s add pictures to your contacts.
39. Move pics/files– Put them in Evernote or Dropbox. They can’t live in your phone forever.
40. Fix that cracked screen– Finally! This time get a real case. Otter and Speck make good ones.
Manage money matters.
41. Review credit card interest rates– You might be able to renegotiate or transfer to a lower interest card
42. Pull credit report– You can get it free at annualcreditreport.com
43. Review car, home and life insurance – Check deductibles, coverage and rates. Maybe you can do better.
44. Review recurring expenses– What is that $10 charge on your MasterCard?
45. Increase your 401K contribution- A 1% increase won’t hurt too much but it will be a blessing in your latter years.
47. Clean off your desk
48. Wipe down all your tech appliances- Computers, phones, mouse, printer, etc. More bacteria lives on this stuff than a toilet handle.
49. File or better yet Scan all your documents-We’re currently obsessed with Scannable.
50. Order filters– Replace all the stuff you know you’re supposed to be replacing
51. Edit your pantry– Are you really going to eat the olives you got 3 years ago in the gift basket? Let it go.
52. Purge your closet– If it doesn’t fir, you must acquit.
53. Schedule maintenance of major appliances
54. Consider a home inspection– they’re not just for House sale time. They can help you identify challenges you’re having before they get to be major problems.
55. Review your goals and make some new ones