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    Discretionary Dollar Simplification

    Simplification means something different to everyone. But in today’s busy society, simplification is a challenge we all face. Let’s work on reducing and eliminating things we don’t enjoy and making room for things we do.

    Mastering Email Filters

    Thursday, September 15th, 2011 at 6:12 AM

    We all email. But we don’t all use email filters. Let’s see how filters may make your digital life much easier.

    What is a Filter
    A filter is a set procedure or action that happens when a trigger occurs. In this case emails will be our triggers. Some email clients call these rules (outlook) while other call them filters (gmail). They do the same thing in most cases.

    Why you Should use Filters
    They will save you time and help you organize your inbox. It can also help reduce spam if that is a problem.

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    Not worth your time? Are you sure?

    Friday, July 15th, 2011 at 4:11 PM

    As an aspiring do it yourself-er I tend to hear a few common responses when sharing new projects or ideas with friends and family. One such phrase comes in many forms but usually sounds like:

    • That’s not worth my time
    • You are losing money if you factor in your time
    • Time is money

    So let’s explore this notion of your time and its value. Think of time in two categories, working and non-working time.

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    Inbox: Defined

    Sunday, December 12th, 2010 at 10:46 AM

    You most likey use an inbox (physical, digital etc).  So here are some tips on getting the most from your inboxes.

    What an Inbox is not:

    A storage spot – Your inbox is not a storage spot. It’s not called a Stay-box. It’s not meant to store things for any longer than absolutely necessary. If you have items in your inbox that are older than a few days, either you are really behind, or you are using your inbox as storage. Shame on you!

    A contact database – Your inbox isn’t meant to keep track of all your contacts. Use an address book for this. If you find yourself keeping messages in your inbox because you don’t want to loose someone’s email or phone number, don’t. Save it in an actual contact database and archive the message.

    A to do list – Nope, your inbox isn’t a to do list either. There are better ways to make a to do list from your inbox items which we will touch on later. Read how to get your inbox to empty….coming soon.

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    Paperless: Reducing the Stream

    Sunday, September 26th, 2010 at 11:02 AM

    1. Paperless: Reducing the Stream
    2. Paperless: Getting Started
    3. Paperless: Managing the Digital Files
    4. Paperless: Organizing/Backup/Sync
    5. Paperless: Other Creative Ideas

    Benefits of Paperless

    • More Secure – Files are secured and can be remotely wiped if a machine is compromised. If our house, car and office burnt to the ground, we’d have full versioned copies of all our files.
    • Less Money – Bottom line paper gets expensive to buy, print on, and store. Also if you need less square footage to store your file cabinets, you can lease a smaller office.
    • Quicker Access – If you want a file the traditional way this means you need to get up, and locate where it is in a file drawer, folder etc. In a paperless office, I (or employees with access) can do a quick search and view all files. Windows Vista and up have a built-in search that makes this a breeze.
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    The Case For Paperless

    Saturday, June 26th, 2010 at 9:31 AM

    Paper litters nearly every aspect of our life. Not only is paper a nuisance, but for every piece of paper you decide to keep, you have to organize, store and manage it. What a waste of time and resources.

    Is your desk covered with neat (or messy) stacks of paper? Do you find it frustrating to find documents in a file cabinet? Tired of having stacks of mail and paper clutter your life? Are you interested in simplifying your life and spending more time doing the things you love?

    Here are just a few reasons to work towards eliminating the endless stream of paper.

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    Borrow or Buy?

    Saturday, January 16th, 2010 at 9:29 PM

    Why do we buy? Do we buy because we need to use or do we buy because we want to have?

    This simple question not always has a simple answer.

    Are you spending extra time and money purchasing things you could be borrowing instead? Here are a few things to consider before you hit the store next time.

    Benefits of Borrowing:

    Test Drive Products for Free
    Would you dream of buying a car without a test drive? I know I wouldn’t. A major benefit of borrowing is that you get to try before you buy. And if you do end up needing to purchase this item (perhaps rarer than you may think), you will be informed with hands on experiences on what features you like or don’t like.

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    Cash for Clutter

    Friday, January 1st, 2010 at 9:26 PM

    So you have now identified a few items to sell for your replacement fund. But how do you turn those items into cash and grow your replacement fund? Here are some ideas.

    Pick The Best First
    Set yourself up for success and sell your best items first. This means items with the highest profit and that are the easiest to ship or transport. These are usually books, electronics and other consumer goods.

    Price to Sell Fast
    You have already decided you wouldn’t mind shedding these items, so don’t let price get in the way. It’s easy to get hung up on what a “deal” the buyer is getting. After all, you paid -insert your price here- and it has the -insert some feature here-. The past is the past, so don’t get hung up on the other guy. (Yes, he is probably getting a good deal). Good deals are what drive sales. The fact is, if it wasn’t such a good deal the buyer wouldn’t be knocking at your door. Make your item a great deal and don’t look back.


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    Chuck the Checkbook

    Friday, December 25th, 2009 at 3:28 PM
    Balancing your personal checkbook is not as necessary as it once was. In fact it’s not necessary at all. Ten years ago you’d have to wait for a statement showing what checks cleared. Times have changed. Here are a few ways for you to get rid of the checkbook and the balancing chore that goes with it.

    Stop Writing Checks
    First thing is first. In order to eliminate the checkbook you have to stop writing checks. While you may not be able to do it cold turkey, in most cases you can use other means of payment. For example you can use your credit/check-card or a BillPay type service.  Electronic transactions like plastic and BillPay clear within a day or so.

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    Tracking Expenses The Easy Way

    Friday, December 18th, 2009 at 9:46 PM

    Do you wonder where your hard earned dollars get spent? Here are some ways to track your expenses in just a few minutes per week.

    1. Use Online banking

    Some smaller banks are still catching up but the larger banks have done a great job of giving you all the tools you need online. If you aren’t using online banking then tracking your expenses will be much more difficult and may require far too much time and effort.

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