Closed September 2017

Clutter Video Tip: How to Get Out the Door on Time in the Mornings!

Having no morning routine can leave you feeling rushed, battered and bruised before you even start your commute. Just a little preparation can help you get ready and get out the door intact.

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Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and I was just on my way out the door, so I thought I’d make you a video about how to get yourself out the door on time. This is a struggle for lots of people.

So, it all starts with our morning and evening routines. So, especially the night before, anything you can do in advance, such as gathering up items, making decisions, can help you save tons of stress and time in the morning when everybody’s scrambling around, trying to get into the car. So, doing things like packing up backpacks, packing up a briefcase, packing lunches the night before, laying out clothing for yourself or your children, all of those things are easily done before and they can streamline everything when you have the minutes ticking away in the morning. You also want to look at that morning routine and try to simplify any kind of grooming and beauty routines that you have and gather up items and centralize them so that that process in the morning is as simple as possible. And, of course, have an organized closet so you can find outfits and put them together and not have a big stressful mess facing you when you wake up.

Another thing I want to talk about though is your calendar. So, we have electronic calendars that a lot of us use now, and we have a lot more space in our appointment fields, like notes fields and location fields and Google Calendar and Outlook, where we can put a lot of information and hardly anyone is really using those. I see people doing that in the most basic way and if you take the time to fill in some of that information it can really save you a lot of stress when you are ready to go. For example, if you need driving directions to somewhere, look them up in advance. You can paste them right into the notes field of that appointment, you can paste the address there, and on some smart phones, you can just click on the address and it will take you to a map. All of that you can put in. and any information about the person you’re meeting with can all be captured right there.

So here’s a question that I teach in my book, The Home Office Handbook, this question you should ask yourself before adding anything to your calendar, and that is this: What can I do before, during, or after this appointment to improve it? So thinking about anything that you could look up, like the driving directions, thinking about anything you might need to bring with you, anything you need to do to prepare for a meeting. If it’s a business meeting, you might need to research that person or their company, you might need to bring business cards. You might need to bring a computer, something to take notes with. If you are going to be with your kids, you might need to bring a lot of changes of clothes or something like that. So there are lots of things you can do before the appointment, you might need to have with you during the appointment. And you might even think about the after so that if there’s a thank you note that needs to be written, or something that needs to be sent, you can get a step ahead of that too. Capture all those things in the appointment fields so that you have that information at your fingertips.

Another thing I want to talk about is gathering up your stuff to bring with you. So, we’ve talked in another video about purse organization, that is really half the battle, knowing where your purse is and having everything you need in it so you can walk out the door.

Now, we also have talked in another video about a destination station. This is the place where you enter and exit the house the most frequently. You want to have at least some hooks there. I am in a temporary apartment right now. I am building a house. So my destination station here is behind me. It’s very basic. I have a hook for my purse, and I have a hook for my keys. And if that’s all you can do, great. It’s a head start. If you have room and you have a better set-up, you can do some shelving or some kind of piece of furniture where you can have all kinds of stuff for yourself. Shoes and socks for the kids, you can have umbrellas, hooks for the backpacks, you can have an errand shelf for anything that needs to go out the door with you. So think about how you can create that destination station in your home.

One of the things that’s really helpful is if you have a lot of things to carry with you, you can use a tray or a basket to consolidate those trips and to even gather these items in advance. So I use this tray, and you can use any kind of basket you want, but if there are things I need to take with me, I usually put them all in here so that I can make one trip to the car and know confidently that I’ve got everything I need for that appointment or meeting.

If you like these tips, there are more where that came from. We are certainly out on social media – Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, all of those places – and if you want to get our weekly newsletter it comes out every Thursday. You can find out more about that at

See you next time, and may you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.

You may have been searching for tips to be prepared for the day and stop being late.

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