Flor&order’s Organising Path

In today’s fast paced world, being organised is one of the essential survival skills. Life is busy and being human increasingly reflects that. Getting organised isn’t so simple as doing this or buying that. The urge to organise arises inside each of us in infinite ways but at the heart of the matter is that gaining clarity is a part of life. Clarity that enables us to grasp a sense of where we have come from and where we want to go. I love providing a service empowering others to find their special clarity and move in the direction of “doing life their way”. My organising philosophy combines developing mindfulness, encouraging an appreciation for minimalism, increasing an appreciation of what to be grateful for, and sharing knowledge of essential life support tools which can enable all the above.

I feel there is a connectedness in everything in life and that there’s a strong link between heart, head, and home. Often, people see the everyday human things as annoying yet necessary evils; I want to change that view. I hold that by thoughtfully incorporating and appreciating everyday things that contribute to being human, that a life develops a stronger foundation. A foundation upon which it is more likely a continuum of happiness can be built. Our living spaces are projections of our headspace and heartspace, so if someone  feels overwhelmed or stressed at home or when contemplating their to do list, or doubts their grasp on time, all are messages of distress. Making connections with a person’s values and needs I help them appreciate life’s requirements that in turn help make their waking hours easier and more productive overall. Approaching my own life in this manner has aided me so often that I deeply feel the fundamental truth in this approach.

Organising has been a major aspect of my personality from the beginning. My family moved frequently and I was always the first one unpacked and ‘at home’ in a new house and city. I realise now that this was an innate means of getting grounded and to feel more at ease in new surroundings and getting on with life. My passion is to help clients find what the advantages of being more organised are and how they can contribute to them becoming “grounded” in the same way.

In my mid 20s I got everything in my life organised. I reached out to experts and outsourced style and shopping, fitness, finance, and established a self-care network made up of a massage therapist, chiropractor, hairdresser, and meditation teacher. I organized my life to more fully support me and as a result was able to focus on my priorities.  I felt composed, cared for, and leading a more streamlined life when facing some serious challenges at times. These experiences made me firmly believe that if someone’s essential life structures are in place, they are much more capable of handling the unexpected.

Managing and organising my life has taught me many skills that have been of great utility for clients. My mind likes structure, seeks structure, and sees clearly how structure can work for the benefit of others. In my work I’m passionate about helping clients find what gaps they have in their lives and through our interactions we find what works best to eliminate them. What excites me about this process is that it’s always surprising and varied as to what one person needs as contrasted to another.  No “one size fits all” model in this field.

In my last corporate job the realization dawned on me that I was meant to be doing organising work. What gave me the most satisfaction was assisting my colleagues in providing life hacks, connecting them with sources to achieve a personal project, or motivating them to improve their current situations. By the time I relocated from Canberra to Melbourne in early 2016, I had already begun working with clients on weekends and loved the experience of connecting with people during organising projects and helping them find tailored solutions. Being in Melbourne has given me the opportunity to turn my full attention to organising and in doing so increase client engagement and knowledge.

Recent study has enabled me to obtain coaching qualifications specifically designed for the professional organising industry. Currently I am only one of two Australian organisers with this qualification. My decision to enroll in the Organizer Coach Foundation Training Program fit naturally with my philosophy that being organised is vital and the training has helped me deepen my connections with clients in order to help achieve their goals.

Organising Coach Christie Flora at Flor&order

As an organiser coach I use the principles of coaching to tackle organising challenges. Utilizing coaching techniques I can more fully respond to the enormous desire that is usually just under the surface of a client’s initial request for organising help. My work helps empower clients who struggle with too-busy lives, disorganisation, ADD, situational stress, or challenging transitions. Transitions both in life as well as place. By tackling challenges in this more in-depth way the client is supported and encouraged to explore what they really need and are better able to tune into their underlying, often partially unconscious needs. I’m intrigued with helping clients learn to engage with their motivations, emboldening them to experiment with perspectives, and to test actions and strategies and tweak all whenever necessary.

One of the fundamental steps in getting organised is looking at the mental clutter that has created the issue. My recent training has made me better able to explore the immobilizing beliefs and personal barriers that a client is unconsciously grappling with.  The next step is then to discover new perspectives that can aid in getting to the place or personal situation desired. Kindness, empathy, curiosity and patience are incredibly important to the whole process. Kindness and empathy lead to compassion and adding curiosity to the mix means we are able to gift ourselves the time and space to explore who we are and what is wanted.  Invaluable knowledge.

Organising is a life time skill that evolves and changes through the years. In today’s fast paced world it’s a basic tool for achieving a more fulfilling and encouraging life. Finding stability in support systems and using order creation to develop and more fully achieve in life, are ideals I strive for and are what I love helping clients discover for themselves.

 

Organising heart, head, and home

Flor&order

Click here to book in for your FREE 20 Minute Clarity Session

 

Morning dressing guidance

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Even with the best intentions, getting ready in the morning can sometimes be stressful.

I’ve collected a few pointers over the years that have consistently come back to me in my mornings of need and have helped me focus through the stress haze that seems to be unique to such times.

From I HEART Your Style by Amanda Brooks

A good starting point for the morning is to ask and remind yourself:
What am I doing today?
Where am I going?
Who do I have to be today and who do I want to be?

From A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style by Tim Gunn

Look at your itinerary for the day, see which appointments you have and with whom, and dress for the highest level of expectation for that day.

And also don’t wear a completely replicated outfit as you’ll miss out on an opportunity to experiment with your other pieces. Throw on a different necklace, a clashing bracelet, big earrings or a scarf. Wear different shoes to the last time, see if it makes the outfit feel different. (I often fallback on tried and true outfits when stressed but this comment by Mr Gunn reminds me to explore my wardrobe and to give other pieces a day out.)

From Style by Lauren Conrad

Something as straight forward as a blazer can be interpreted a 100 different ways.

And from an unknown source

Remember that you have everything you need in your wardrobe, it’s just about mixing old things up and finding new ways to present pieces that suit the day.

Time for a rampage?

In my last post I mentioned expiry dates in passing. They deserve a post of their own because expiry dates are great for kick starting a decluttering rampage in the beauty products arena.

At the beginning of the year, I used a lipstick and was quite unsatisfied because it seemed to have lost its vibrancy since the last time I used it. This made me curious about the life span of lipsticks and other cosmetics. Searching online, I found several articles that gave me guidance around the expiration dates of products. I felt liberated. I felt as though permission to throw stuff out had been granted. I felt dangerous. A rampage ensued and I threw out a lot of products with glee that I could finally admit that they weren’t making me happy. I realised that I’d been holding on to many of these products because:

a) I’d spent money on them;

b) I hadn’t really used them all that much; and

c) maybe I’d use them one day.wooden-690762_1280

The following guidelines steered my rampage:

  • Acne treatments: Three months to a year.
  • Body lotion: One year.
  • Shampoo, conditioner and shower gel: About three years.
  • Mascara and liquid eyeliner: Three to four months.
  • Eye and lip pencils: Three to five years.
  • Lipstick and gloss: Eighteen months after first use.
  • Foundation and concealer: About a year.
  • Eye shadow: About two years.
  • Blush and bronzer: About 18 months after first use.
  • Perfume: About two years.
  • Nail polish: One year.
  • Hairstyling products: Three to five years.
  • Lip balm: One to three years after first use.

I found the experience quite fun as a memory lane exercise as well. I enjoyed stretching
my brain to remember back to when I’d bought an item. This also illustrated quite clearly just how long I had held on to something (like said lipstick) and how justifiable it was to throw it out. Once I was on a roll, it felt amazing to keep clearing out my draws and by the end, when I was down to the bare minimum, the feeling of a simplified and clutter free vanity was worth more to me than holding on to products to see if I could justify having spent money on them to begin with.

As a treat to myself for having cleared out so much, including many eye shadow single pots and samples that were as old as Clinique itself, I purchased one beautiful eye shadow palette. My plan is to enjoy this palette for two years before replacing, this will give me plenty of time to fully explore all its combinations and perfect a few looks. This plan fills me with as much joy as seeing my tidy and minimalist vanity everyday. But funnily enough, going on a rampage was so much fun that I actually feel sad that I have nothing left to purge!

Product Placement… make it work for you

As blatantly obvious as it is is, sometimes almost groan worthy so, there’s a reason why product placement is so prevalent on our entertainment screens – because it works. auto-424119_1280Brands that you were unaware of being in existence last week come to mind at the drop of a hat, products that you didn’t even know you needed become utterly important for your reality to continue and you. must. have. them. NOW.

So, how can you use this tactic to your advantage? In your own home? Well, let me ask you… because I’m on a roll with the questions in this paragraph… have you had that experience where you’ve thought ‘I need hand cream’ and then after returning from the shops you realise that you already had five hand creams and two were half used? It’s frustrating, not only because of the additional money spent but I bet that you’d be itching to open the new and exciting hand cream over the older ones (and really, due to expiration dates and all – they should be used up first).

Continue reading “Product Placement… make it work for you”

Money makes the world go round

I’ll admit it, I like budgeting. I find it fun, challenging and rewarding.piggy-bank-760993_1280

The way I have my budget set up, it allows me to take a trip to Sydney at a moment’s notice, to go on shopping sprees and to have my hair done nicely every eight weeks. It also accommodates medical emergencies and gift giving.

I do this by having a billion accounts with my bank. Okay that’s an exaggeration but I do have a lot. More than the usual customer I would guess because every time I go in to a branch or use phone banking the teller will, without a doubt, comment on the number of accounts I have. I smile along and say ‘it’s just how I manage my finances’.

I have 13 saving accounts and then my every day account on top of that (where my fortnightly food and social money lives). To set this up I had a look at the demands on my money and then went further into each area and decided how much I would need to put aside each pay to reach a certain goal. Take for example my haircut – it’s $96 every eight weeks, so every pay I put aside $24 and then when it’s time to have my hair done I’m not scrambling around trying to balance the amount with the rest of the week’s demands.

  1. Bus and Taxi
  2. Career Development and Entertainment (concerts etc)
  3. Clothes and Style
  4. Cosmetics
  5. Essentials (Such as phone)
  6. Exercise (Membership and Clothes)
  7. Gift Giving
  8. Hair (Cuts and accessories)
  9. House Appliances
  10. Rent and Bills
  11. Savings
  12. Travel
  13. Well Being (Anything to do with mental health and physical health – such as appointments with doctors, dentists and massages)

I lose a little on interest by not having all my money in the one account but not enough to give up this method. It works for me so I’d rather the peace of mind over a few more dollars. It’s a bargain I reckon!

A tool that I find really useful in managing my budget is this free spreadsheet available from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission MoneySmart website. This spreadsheet is just the tip of the iceberg of the wealth of information available on this site.

Sometimes staying within my budget can be a challenge – a fun challenge though – like when an expensive dinner pops up unexpectedly, or I’m itching to buy a pair of shoes but there’s not enough funds in my Clothes and Style account. In regards to the shoes, the challenge is to practice patience till the following pay day and with the expensive dinner I borrow, but try not to make a practice of it, from another account and make a note to repay that money back. When pay day rolls around again I absolutely relish the satisfying feeling of making everything right again.

I’ve found that by embracing a budget as an interest, that not only has tracking my money become a fun and rewarding part of my life but it also makes me feel wealthier. And that is, to quote Mastercard, priceless.

The Magic Makeup Brush Tree

Washing my makeup brushes is something I know I should probably do more often as it’s better for my face and overall hygiene. And although I’ve watched several videos on YouTube in attempts to find a method that streamlines the process and inspires me (or scares me) to do it more regularly, I still find it all quite tedious.

A part of the process that especially takes up way too much of my head space is the drying component. While waiting for the brushes to dry it’s at the back of my mind that they may be suffering sun damage, or that they’ve fallen to the ground, the bristles snapping and getting contaminated, or that dogs are using them as chew toys. To avoid these scenarios, I’ve tried different methods such as laying the brushes out on towels near windows (annoying because one side of the brush ends up getting misshaped) and I’ve used hair ties to hang each one upside down on towel rails (VERY time consuming).

But my days of stressing are over because this brilliant contraption. I found it on eBay by accident when I was looking for a makeup brush roll/bag and instead this caught my eye – a Makeup Brush Tree. I took a chance, ordered one and to date I have used it three times. And so far so wpid-20150524_195425-1.jpgwpid-20150524_190317-1.jpggood, the brushes are fully supported, they feel as though they aren’t going to fall on the ground and they are able to dry completely up ended. This ensures that no water can run into the brush and destroy the glue holding the bristles together. The tree also comes apart for easy storage when not in use, so my bathroom remains tidy and uncluttered. Just how I like it.

This experience also reminded me as to why I like eBay so much. You just never know what a word phrase will lead you to discover. So thank you, eBay, for reducing my first world problems by one more notch!

I heart Chemist Warehouse

wpid-screenshot_2015-08-23-13-26-39-1-1.pngI recently had to buy antibiotics from a regular chemist. It wasn’t till later that I realised how much I had forked over for said antibiotics as I was a) not thinking straight and b) just really grateful for the medication. These ones cost me $22.10.

Well, my second round of the same antibiotics I got from Chemist Warehouse, my usual chemist of choice, and they came in at $6.10.

I was flabbergasted. And further committed to Chemist Warehouse.

I’ve been seeking out Chemist Warehouse over other chemists for years now. It’s my go to for prescriptions and if I can get something at Chemist Warehouse, such as vitamins, electric toothbrush heads, makeup, soaps, body lotions or deodorants, I will go to them over Priceline or Coles as their prices are regularly cheaper.

For example, Priceline and Chemist Warehouse both stock the following makeup brands: Revlon, Maybelline and Rimmel. And unless Priceline happens to be having a sale on, the price difference on the same item is remarkable.

Priceline: Revlon ColorStay Natural Makeup $39.95

Chemist Warehouse: Revlon ColorStay Natural Makeup $33.69

That difference in money is a coffee and muffin deal! Or a delicious Saigon Roll… yum yum… anyway! I digress. Chemist Warehouse has saved me a lot of money over the years. Especially if I can resist popping extra stuff into my basket when browsing as I wait for my scripts to be filled.

Bonus tip: If you happen to have an Entertainment Book, there are a few $10 off vouchers for Chemist Warehouse that you can use with an over $50 purchase (excluding prescriptions). I got a huge kick out of ringing up a $51 purchase and then only paying $41 for the lot! SCORE!!

My ready-for-anything handbag

Like my ready-for-anything work draw, my handbag reflects that I like to be prepared for pretty much anything that may happen to me while I’m on the move. Saying this, I’m also conscious of causing unnecessary back pain and so I go through the contents regularly and evaluate an item’s usefulness or replace an item with a lighter alternative if I come across it.

Here are the contents of my handbag:

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Top row, from left :

  1. Estee Lauder Grey Pouch (more about this below).
  2. Glomesh key wallet (I love the feel of the Glomesh and the colour means that I can see it easily in my handbag).
  3. Reading glasses.
  4. My wallet, chosen specifically for its colour (so it’d stand out in my handbag) and light weight leather.
  5. A muesli bar of some sort because I get ‘hangry’. I do. I get so hangry. Many times a muesli bar has saved me from making bad shopping mistakes or has carried me over between social appointments.
  6. Samsung headphones.
  7. Sunglasses (cheap enough that I don’t worry about them not having a hard case for protection).
  8. Some sort of sweet in case I (or someone with me) has a dry throat or starts feeling thirsty.
  9. Samsung phone charger (you just never know when you may have a busy day on your phone and need a top up).
  10. Coloured lipgloss.
  11. Clear lipgloss.
  12. Small pocket mirror! My friend bought this for me in Japan and I just love the print plus it’s really light.
  13. Small tube of hand cream. My hands often do get dry but this can also be used as an emergency means of smoothing away flyaway hairs.
  14. Compact Tangle Teezer (an excellent hairbrush).
  15. Envirosax reusable shopping bag. I love these, they are waterproof polyester bags that roll up so small, come in great designs and carry up to 22kg! Great for those impromptu shopping trips.
  16. Packet of tissues.
  17. A pen.
  18. A small sticky notes pad.
  19. And of course my phone, but it was busy taking the photo above.

What’s inside the Estee Lauder Pouch?

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This is my first aid kit and my on the go medicine cabinet.

Top row, from left:

  1. Bandaids
  2. Bandaid friction block stick (I bought this in America years ago, I use it more in summer than winter)
  3. Refresher towelette
  4. Small tictacs
  5. Small dental floss
  6. Two Systane Lubricating Eye Drop Vials
  7. Thread unpicker (a strange inclusion, I know, but I use it often)
  8. Panty liner
  9. Tampon
  10. Hairbands
  11. Bobby pin
  12. And various tablets for different ailments

What do you keep on your person while on the move? Let me know in the comments below!

Keeping stay ups alive for longer

pantyhose-309057A couple of months ago I went with a friend at lunch time on an emergency mission to buy replacement stay ups (you know the ones with the self supporting silicone hem and wide lace floral trim?). The pair she’d worn to work that day had been slipping down since morning tea time and were driving her nuts.

Lamenting to the store assistant that she hadn’t really had them all that long, the store assistant advised something radical – Once a week, wash only the feet of the stay ups in shampoo and then leave to dry.   

Well, my friend was flabbergasted. It made perfect sense. The stay ups didn’t need to go into the washing machine! The only parts that ever got really dirty were the feet so why subject the whole self supporting mechanism to a brutal spin? It only shortens the life of the silicone hem!

With profound advice in hand we returned to work and although my friend did buy a leave-at-the-office-pair of stay ups, just in case, to date they haven’t had to be employed.

You know you’re an organising geek when…

Your guilty pleasure is to stroll the aisles of OfficeWorks on your way home from work.

I adore it. I feel inspired and there is no aisle I don’t like. I like looking at the new products and new colour ranges of notebooks and writing utensils. I also like the way the store rearranges the aisles every so often, which suddenly make items reveal new potential when seen in a different light.

My most recent OfficeWorks stroll paid off and solved a problem I’d been percolating over for weeks. The feeling of achievement just made me so happy I was running off of it for several days.

A while ago, I made a makeshift shelf out of a plastic food container to make better use of my bathroom shelf. It does the job but the crudeness of my cutting job has annoyed me and I’ve been trying to find an alternative ever since.

BEFORE

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I’d contemplated options in the dollar stores and I’d spent time in Big W. I was thinking about in trays, small kitchen wire shelves, things that I could turn up side down to create a shelf. But it was OfficeWorks’ latest arrangement that brought a brochure holder to my attention. I picked it up and I started to get that feeling. That feeling that lets me know that I am on to something. I turned it over, I got my measuring tape out with eager hyper fingers and it was perfect. What I love about it too is that it creates two smaller sections on either side for smaller items.

AFTER

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An even better solution may present itself at some point but for now, this makes me smile every time I see it.