Monthly Archives: January 2017

Give it a minute!


“Patience is a virtue.” (Attribution)

Most of us have heard that quote at some point in our lives.  Patience isn’t something I’m particularly good at, but certainly something I continue to work on incorporating into my life every day.

I had an experience the other day that reminded me of how powerful a bit of patience can be.

My mom was visiting from out of town and we decided to experience the 3:00 elk feeding at Nelson Preserve at Suncadia Resort.   We arrived at the feeding station about 3:30.  No elk.   A few cars were there already, but left about 10 minutes after we arrived.  Clearly they couldn’t wait any longer for the majesty of nature to arrive.

About 3:45 two more cars arrived.  They were clearly together.  One gentleman came over and asked where the elk were.  “Usually here at 3:00” he says.  He turned away and headed back to his car.  No more than 10 minutes later he signaled to his buddy that it was time to leave.  They’d waited no more than 10 minutes.  Patience was not a virtue they were exercising that day.  Unfortunate, as no more than 5 minutes after they left, the elk started pouring in from the trees.  It was amazing!

About 15 minutes later there were close to 60 head of elk enjoying the hay that Suncadia generously leaves for them. (Thanks Suncadia Resort for taking care of our furry friends!)

Suncadia Resort Elk Feeding
January 28, 2017

Now, I don’t know what else those other folks had going, but I’m so glad that we had the patience to wait.  It was a wonderful experience.

What have you appreciated by practicing patience?







Cindy Jobs
Member Color - WebNational Association of Professional Organizers, Seattle Chapter President
 ICD_LogoTag_Horz_72 websiteCertified Premium Subscriber, Institute for Challenging Disorganization

How do you A.C.T.?

When working with clients, I hear a lot about how there just isn’t enough time or energy to do everything they want to do.  In actuality, it’s not really a time or energy  issue . . .  it’s more about decisions around where to spend their time and mental energy.

I’ve found it helpful for my clients (I use this myself, also) to break down how they use their time or energy into three categories I refer to as A.C.T.

A – Action:  This is where we should spend the majority of our time and energy.  This is the area where we can get things done.  Decisions are within our control.  Actions are doable. We are in charge of our destiny. “Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan.” (Margaret Thatcher)

C – Consciousness:  These are things that are facts and issues we can’t control, yet are worrisome to us.  This category may include the health and welfare of a loved one; whether or not we will get a promotion (once the Action category is no longer in play); climate change (yes, we can do our part, but we can’t control all of it), etc.  Until we let our brains process things in the consciousness zone, they will just sit and ruminate.  Acknowledge them, say a polite “thank you” then let them go.

T – Trash:  This is the easier stuff to let go of.  Falling into this category may be the actions of others (can’t really control those, can we?); the weather (unless, of course you’re having an outside wedding and it looks like rain, then the Action category would be appropriate); things that have happened in the past (can’t change those), etc.  Let go of things you can’t control that don’t have a huge impact going forward.  To these items, I say “Why did I waste my time and energy on you?  Good riddance!”

When your time or energy starts to get the better of you . . . A.C.T.

Cindy Jobs
Member Color - WebNational Association of Professional Organizers, Seattle Chapter President
 ICD_LogoTag_Horz_72 websiteCertified Premium Subscriber, Institute for Challenging Disorganization

The Art of Apologizing (or not apologizing)

Sometimes I focus on the strangest things.  Recently I’ve been paying attention to how much I apologize.  As it turns out, I apologize a lot. Multiple times a day.

This made me curious, so I did some research.

  • Do women apologize more than men?
  • How does apologizing make us feel?
  • What am I apologizing for?
  • How can I apologize more effectively?

As it turns out, contrary to popular belief, women actually don’t proportionately apologize more than men; however, the confusion may lie in what we find apology worthyWomen apologized with more frequency, mainly because they believed they created an apology-worth event.

I was astounded to find that not apologizing may be better for us than actually apologizing. Although, in my opinion, we should always apologize for things that truly hurt people or property, possibly not apologizing  for minor transgressions may have benefits. According to researchers Tyler Okimoto, Michael Wenzel, and Kyli Hendrick:

“Results showed that the act of refusing to apologize resulted in greater self-esteem than not refusing to apologize. Moreover, apology refusal also resulted in increased feelings of power/control and value integrity, both of which mediated the effect of refusal on self-esteem.”

Who knew?

So what is it that I apologize for? Here’s a small list over the last few days:

  • Being slightly late. (I mean, like, two minutes.)
  • Eating the last slice of bread. (We don’t eat a lot of bread.  This didn’t impact anyone.)
  • Taking a call from my mom while I’m in the middle of a conversation with my husband (Really!?  She’s 87 and lives 500 miles away.  I will always take that call.)
  • Calling my mom, then finding out she has company. (Seriously! She lives 500 miles away.  How did I know she had company?)

I got to thinking.  Would any of the men in my life feel a need to apologize for those things?  Absolutely not.  So yes, I apologize more because I’ve convinced myself I need to apologize.

So, if I do find a need to apologize, what does an effective apology look like??

  1. Expression of regret
  2. Explanation of what went wrong
  3. Acknowledgement of responsibility
  4. Declaration of repentance
  5. Offer of repair
  6. Request for forgiveness

So, let’s pretend I’ve just broken an expensive serving dish:

“Mom, I’m so sorry, but I just broke your platter.  I was washing it and my soapy hands just didn’t hold on.  It’s all my fault and I am so sorry!  Can we go shopping together so I can replace it?  I hope you can forgive me, I will be more careful in the future.”

Or, let’s say I’m five minutes late for a lunch appointment:

“Thanks for waiting for me, I’m really looking forward to catching up.”

No significant harm done.  Acknowledge the minor transgression and start the lunch date on a positive note of appreciation.

It’s up to each of us personally to decide what we need to apologize for, but maybe not apologizing is better for everyone involved.  Your call.


Cindy Jobs

Organize to Simplify RGB

Member Color - WebNational Association of Professional Organizers, Seattle Chapter President
 ICD_LogoTag_Horz_72 websiteCertified Premium Subscriber, Institute for Challenging Disorganization