Don't Shop 'Till You Drop



By: Becky Esker, President, Get Organized! LLC

      Shopping and errands can be time-consuming endeavors.  Have you ever found yourself spending the entire day running from one errand to another and not really accomplishing much?  This is stressful to say the least. With gas prices these days, it is down right expensive too.  With the holidays just around the corner, shopping and errands are plentiful.

     Planning is the key to making the most out of shopping and errands.  Before you leave the house, make a list of all the places you need to go.  Also have a list of each item you need to get or task you need to complete for each stop you make.  Evaluate all your stops and start with the errand farthest from home and work your way back home.  As you make the stops, check them off your list.  

     Shopping lists are critical to stress-free, efficient and cost-effective shopping. If you have a list of all the items you need, stick to the list and it will save you money.  You will also be in and out of the store and on your way to your next destination in no time at all. 

     Keep a running shopping list at home.  A shopping list on the refrigerator, on or in a cabinet door, or any other sensible location in the kitchen is a major time and money-saver. Anytime you or a family member notices something running out, add it to the list.  Take the list with you to the store and check off the items as you place them in the cart. 

     Avoid shopping during the busiest shopping times. Saturdays and early evening are generally busy times as is Christmas Eve. Consider shopping late at night or early in the morning as there are less people and more parking spaces.

     Once arriving home from shopping and errands, you should promptly put all items away.  If you have cold items, put these away into the refrigerator and freezer first.  Then empty each and every bag putting the items away in their designated homes.  If an item is new to the household, designate a home immediately and put it away. If you have gifts for the holiday, consider wrapping them right away.  Leaving your purchases in their bags is simply creating clutter.

     Remember the telephone is a valuable tool.  If you question whether or not a store might have what you need or where the item you want is located, call ahead!  If possible, request the store hold the item at the front counter. A few minutes on the telephone can save an hour or more of your time.   

     Instituting a well-planned day will reduce your stress and leave time for you to enjoy the things that really matter in life. Enjoy the shopping, just donít do the dropping!


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Becky Esker is a Certified Professional Organizer, owner of Get Organized! LLC, speaker and the forthcoming author of "2 Minutes to Organization: The Simplest Way to Get Organized."

Ms. Esker is available for local, regional, and national professional speaking engagements, seminars, retreats, and trainings. She is an experienced, energetic, and dynamic nationwide speaker. As a certified professional organizer and entrepreneur, Ms. Esker possesses specialized expertise in Chronic Disorganization, Basic ADD Issues with the CD Client, and Business Productivity Management. As an author and instructor, Ms.Esker is uniquely suited to create custom tailored results-driven presentations that engage and inform the audience while addressing today's hot topics in the business, corporate, personal, and residential organizing arena.  She is a regular contributor to The Edge Business Magazine and City Revealed.




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