Organize Your Life

October 23, 2013

Speaker: Devora Farrell, Professional Home and Office Organizer

Living with cancer influences decision making around organizing your life.  It’s important to approach organizing for the sake of liberation – freeing up time and space for what matters most to you.

The following are helpful organization tips:

  • Ask yourself, “Who am I now and do the things or people in my life reflect that?”
  • Are you holding on to something because you feel guilty letting go for fear it could hurt someone’s feelings, paid money for the item and believe it is a shame to throw away, or feel it may have some purpose in the future even though it cannot be used in the present?  If so, consider letting go if it doesn’t currently enhance your life.
  • Store medication bottles in a decorative box or ceramic bowl so they do not become part of the decor of your home.
  • Clean out your purse on a regular basis.  Unless you are participating on the game show “Let’s Make a Deal” in which you get paid for having obscure items in your purse, it is not necessary to carry the extra load.
  • Prepare different tote bags to take with you to various appointments.  If you know you are going for a lengthier treatment, bring along the tote bag that contains to-do items that require more time to complete. If you are going to a doctor’s visit where the wait is typically shorter, bring a smaller bag filled with things that can be completed in a shorter time period.
  • Keep a master list of what you need to accomplish and note how much time you anticipate that task will require.  You can choose which task to undertake based on priority or how much time you have available.
  • If you have friends or family members who are helping with errands or shopping, there is a smartphone app called Anylist that everyone can download to share and sync to-do lists.
  • Create well-labeled bins to store items that you would like to pass along to significant people in your life.
  • Edit your contact information.  There may come a point when you or someone else is sending emails to everyone in your contact list and you want to be sure that the people on the list reflect who your contacts are today.
  • Keep all of your important and legal documents in a safe place and let someone know how to access them.  Include a list of important passwords.
  • Refresh your goals based on how you are feeling throughout the day.  Begin the day hoping to be productive or social, but build in the understanding that your energy may change throughout the day.  This allows you the freedom to rebalance your day and make changes without internal or external pressures.

Join our Embrace teleconference series for women living with advanced cancer »

Connect with our clinical staff for more information and individualized support »