Chloe on procrastination

This week’s theme is perfect for the busy time I’m going through right now: procrastination.

I’ve noted that the more stressed and overwhelmed I feel, the more I procrastinate. I tend to be a perfectionist as well, to keep some sort of control I guess, and as Marcia says in the lesson, it’s often the main cause of procrastination.

The tips she gives to break procrastination are all great, but my fave is to do the most unpleasant or difficult task first, or as she often says, to “eat the frog“.

I often tell myself, “eat broccoli first, dessert after”, which means the same: once the task you dreaded most is done, you feel proud of yourself and the rest seems almost easy!

I’ve recently noted something very similar in my professional life (again): I had the chance to have a couple days without my boss being in the office all day.

She’s a mayor’s deleguee and we work together all the time since we’re planning a very big event.

We work great together usually, but when she asks for something, “not now” or “I should be doing something else instead” is NOT an acceptable answer.

When she spends the day in my office, I usually don’t do much besides what she asks for. Anyway, last week she wasn’t there for two whole days. On the first one I thought “Oh, the day is long, I can start with some easy tasks, complete some filing and some “relaxing” to-do’s. I deserve some mini-vacation!”

Well, the days aren’t that long actually, and I can’t afford vacations, even mini ones! I ended up not having done much and feeling frustrated for “wasting” a day.

I didn’t repeated that same mistake on the second day when she was gone, and at lunch break I had already written 4 articles for the town magazine, updated the website for the 3 coming weeks and finished the programme for our big event so that it could be printed as soon as she would give me the green light!

I can’t tell you how proud and satisfied I felt compared to the first day.

Lesson learned: I will start my day with the most important and most annoying tasks first, so that if my day gets crazy afterwards, at least this part is done. Filing can wait (not indefinitely, but you get the idea! LOL)!

Take care!


Chloe, I love how you recognised your time challenges both with your boss’s demanding style and with your own internal distractions the first day, but most of all, I love how you self-corrected.

Fantastic job – I’m so proud of you.

Do you procrastinate?
Have you ever thought about why you do so?

Help! I’m stressed

This is Chloe’s guest post – Simplify your Life week 6

This week’s theme couldn’t have come at a better time for me.

I have a 5 day long music festival to organise for the very first time (needless to say we’re starting from scratch!) at work for the end of June.

As if this wasn’t enough, I also had a FET (frozen embryo transfer) planned at the beginning of July. My body started to act weird and this weekend I was sure I would never be able to get the FET done this summer and that I would have to wait until September. Knowing that, you’ll understand why I got a terrible score at the stress test included in this week’s lesson when I filled it in on Sunday night: I got 22 signs of stress, which means that I am 20% effective. Only!

Luckily, my FET issues got solved on Monday and I might have less stress signs if I’d redo the test today. But this didn’t solve everything, by far!

Here are the main stressors I’ve identified, and the solutions I’d like to apply:


  • Infertility: not knowing what will happen, not controlling things. Solution: maybe see a therapist to help me deal with the emotional side of this process. I can’t control the situation but I can control my attitude towards it!
  • Being overweight (well… obese, to be honest!): I feel bad about myself, guilty, always tired. Solution: sleep (it’s a big factor in weight loss, even if often underestimated), eat more good food (eating less of the bad ones doesn’t work with me) and exercise some. That last one might not be done right now considering my crazy schedule, but it’s on the list nonetheless!
  • Feeling that I do a lot of chores compared to DBF (even if it’s not completely true). Solution: express this feeling (he can’t read my mind!) and simply ask him to help me.
  • Money worries. Solution: live frugally by cutting the last few extras, create and follow a budget.
  • Guilt for not doing enough, perfectionism. Solution: admit that I can’t do it all, give up on some things/activities, declutter my (self-imposed) obligations.


  • Too much work. Solution: delegate, wait before saying yes and make sure that I can do something properly and without stress before accepting it.
  • One of my bosses’ interruptions and sense of urgency. Solution: plan for interruptions and make “real work” on other times of the day, when I know she won’t be around.
  • Not feeling recognised and respected. Solution: take my distances, this is “just” a job!

Okay, I know some of those solutions are easier said than done, but listing the things I want to work on is the first step.

I will start taking action on the items that I can manage in this crazy time without adding too much extra stress to my life.

For example, finding the time to exercise wouldn’t be easy and would do more harm than good. But getting to bed earlier to get more zzzzz in is totally doable and would help tremendously. It’s a cost/benefit balance that I need to find!

Do you have any ideas that would help me defeat my stressors? Please share! And take care!!

Marcia here – I’ve answered Chloe in the comments. Join your voice to mine.

{Chloe} on simplify your life – week 6 – saying no

Ah, saying no… quite a program for this week, isn’t it?

Well, to me saying no is something quite difficult to do.

Not because I can’t say no, but because I don’t say it in a good way.

I’m very strong-minded and I have a sharp tongue, and if I don’t pay attention I can be very rude. Knowing that, I was especially interested into the tips that Marcia would give in this week’s lesson about how to say no in an effective and good way.

Strangely, “NO” can be very positive and “yes” can be negative: “When you say yes to one thing, you always say no to something else”, says Marcia.

And the opposite is true. Saying no to something that isn’t aligned with the life your pursue is saying yes to your true goals and aspirations.

The things I want to say no to are the following:

  • accepting extra work that isn’t my responsability, especially when there is nothing good in return,
  • tolerating when someone is unfair and disrespectful to my work and, consequently, to me,
  • doing extra work without even being asked to.

Once again, the professional area is the one I’ll be focusing on, as I feel respected in my private life.

What I liked most about this week’s lesson is that the last page focus on enjoying life. It helps realising that, when you say no to some unimportant, negative, useless things, you have more time, more energy and more life to spend doing important, positive things, that make you grow and feel happy.

The next month will be extremely busy at work, and we’ll have an infertility treatment right after that (frozen embryo transfer), so needless to say that it’ll be a stressful time.

Remembering to enjoy life will be more important than ever, and I’ve already scheduled some fun events: a maternity photo session with a pregnant friend of mine, some pages I want to scrap, a lunch with my friends.

All those steps will make the stressful period easier to go through.

Take care!

Hi, Marcia here

Chloe, I love how you’ve already scheduled lots of fun events to keep you focussed and looking forward. Fantastic!!!

(you’ll see exactly why when you read tomorrow’s newsletter ;))

All the best with your FET and with saying no to things you want less of in your life.

Over to you – how easy is it for you to say no?

PS Sam’s had sick kiddos and will be back once they’re healthy again πŸ™‚

{Chloe} on simplify your life – week 5

Before I get to this week’s topic, just a quick update about last week’s goals I set for myself:

I had decided to

  • walk with my dog 15 minutes every night
  • clean the dishes after each meal
  • spend 15 minutes daily working on our paperwork so that I could get our finances back under control.

Well, it all went pretty well during the week and I’m really proud of the work I did.

On Friday, I couldn’t do any of those because I had a big event at work in the evening. On Saturday I got a bit lazy but I played catch up on Sunday and all in all it’s been a good week.

Everything went much more smoothly than usual, especially thanks to the clean dishes. There’s always one little thing that can make a tremendous difference in a home: make the bed, pick up the toys every night, get up 15 minutes before the rest of the family… I guess for me it’s cleaning the dishes, and I’m glad I found this “easy button” that makes the rest of the housekeeping easier!

Actually, my house was in such a good shape that I took pix for a home tour, that you can see on my blog here. I’d love to know what you think of my home sweet home! πŸ˜‰

Okay, onto this week’s topic: boundaries.

For me, this applies mainly to work.

The professional environment is hard to handle because you HAVE to do some things that you don’t always enjoy, but at the same time, you must not abandon all pride and dignity for your job or you’ll go insane.

It’s hard to set limits and at the same time obey the orders that are given to you. In my job, I have two main boundary-related issues:

  1. inappropriate behaviours (aggressive, machist, mean), mostly from colleagues.
  2. not being recognized and respected, or at least not feeling like it, mostly from my bosses.

For the both problems, the solution is the same: I have to speak up in a good (=constructive) way. I must learn when to ignore bad behaviours (some people are hopeless, I must not waste my energy on them) and that telling things that I want or need simply is the best way to get them.

I already made a great step in the right direction a couple weeks ago: I asked my boss for a pay raise. Even though I was terribly scared (I was literally shaking from head to toe), I asked for an appointment and exposed my arguments.

I was calm and confident (or at least I looked like it! LOL). I haven’t gotten the raise yet, but I have good hopes that it will happen soon.

You know what sentence I repeatedly told myself to give me courage to speak up? “The worst that can happen is that he’d say no… it’s not a big deal!!!”

And it worked, I pushed my limits and even if it doesn’t work, at least I have no regrets because I have expressed what I want.

You know the sentence “It goes without saying”? I always reply “but it goes better WITH saying”, so speak up! πŸ˜‰

Take care!


Chloe, I love this post but more importantly, I love that you took action and spoke up.

It’s so empowering when we start standing up for ourselves and I’m proud of you for doing so!


{Chloe} on simplify your life – week 4

Before we start with Chloe’s post, I’d like to hear from you if you’ve also started following along with Chloe and Sam in terms of making any changes, thinking differently, being more intentional about your life, etc.

Leave a message in the comments otherwise email me on marcia AT (there are lots of shy people who only email me instead of commenting).










Ah, this week we’re getting to the tough stuff: finding balance.

You may have noticed that my journey was very theoretical so far, I learned a lot about myself but didn’t make much concrete changes… yet.

I could use the fact that my clutter was not material as an excuse for not taking action, but not anymore!

This week, Marcia asks me what one thing I can do differently TODAY to create more balance in my life.

The three areas that deserve better care are health/physical, financial and environment (housekeeping).

I then decided to do one thing in those areas every day this week:

take the dog out for a 15 minutes walk every evening, work on my PPW to make sure that my finances are in order for 15 minutes and do the dishes after each meal (that’s one of my worst habits!).

All in all, this shouldn’t take more than 1 hour daily, spread over the whole day.

It should be manageable, right?

Just to make you see where I’m starting from on the paperwork front, here’s what my desk looked like on Sunday, before I started:

Scary, uh?

I’ll let you know in the comments how that goes so far (since I’ve started this on Sunday), and I’ll post about it next week as well. Hold me accountable! πŸ˜‰

From Marcia

Um, yes, Chloe, I’ll definitely hold you accountable πŸ™‚


And now, have a look at a fabulous email I received.

Marcia, I just wanted you to know that I am making big strides. In just one week, I organized my office, bought files, a label maker and even created zones.

I am inspired to work in my office again.

While it was never a mess, I found myself spending way too much time trying to find where I put this or that. Now having everything in its prospective zone is deliciously satisfying.

Ricci Jackson, C.I.D.
Certified interior decorator

Don’t you love how she used the words “deliciously satisfying”. Hmmm, YES!

Your office can also be deliciously satisfying – organise your home office today.


{Chloe} on simplify your life – week 3







After focusing on listing our priorities last week, this week’s lesson is all about finding and getting rid of non-priorities. To me, there are 3 different types of those that take way too much of my time and, worst, of my energy:

  • activities that don’t bring “value” to my life, that don’t make me happy (mindless TV or internet browsing, gossiping and negative talking, fantasies about “what I’d do if I’d win the lottery”, which makes me unsatisfied with what I have right now, etc.)
  • mental clutter, which weighs a lot even if it’s immaterial (worries about things I can’t control, like what other think, unsaid things, unspoken resentment that “eat” me from inside, non-constructive comments or criticism, which is something I’m unfortunately very good at, etc.)
  • physical clutter (mostly things that comes from “shoulds” or “woulds” or “might’s”)

Those various types of clutter all have the same effect, no matter if they are “real” or immaterial: they are blocks on my road to the life I want to live.

They don’t let me grow and develop my potential, they drain me out, they make me stumble and fall down (metaphorically or really), they make me waste my energy and lose focus… Well, they are not good and they can create much much suffering and pain.

This weekend, a sad event put things back in perspective: a friend of mine had a severe accident. He fell off his roof and/or had a bad stroke, we don’t know yet which one came first. Anyway, this terrible event helped me remember that things we take for granted might not last, that we have to live RIGHT NOW and not wait until X or Y happens.

I’ve taken the resolution to not delay the important things I have to do: tell my family and friends that I love them, show them that I care about them, support them when they are going through a rough time. If that means that I will have a pile of dirty dishes in the sink because I spent my evening with my friend’s wife, supporting her while she’s waiting to hear from the hospital where her husband is fighting for his life, so be it. Once my time is over on this earth, I won’t be remembered for a sparkly clean house or a perfectly organised desk, I want to be remembered for being a good person, a caring and loving friend, daughter, girlfriend, sister, and hopefully soon a mother.

This doesn’t mean I have given up on the idea of organisation but it put it in perspective: people I love are my #1 priority and I won’t let anything, any stupid attitude issue, any bad character trait come against it.

Now, please, do me a favor, go see your husband/wife/partner, kids, parents, friends and hug them, tell them you love them, show them your support with thoughtful little gestures and keep my friend in your thoughts and prayers.

Take care ! (and I’ve never meant it more than today!)


Marcia here

Chloe, I absolutely agree – that’s why I like to tell people to be organised just enough to live life like you want to. There is certainly more to life than perfectly organised folders and matching pens πŸ™‚

PS Sam has not been well and will be back with her guest post as soon as she’s better.

{Chloe} on Simplify your life – week 1

I was very excited when I received the first e-mail for the Simplify Your Live e-course. Reading the summary, I already knew this week would be all about vision: what does a simplified life look like. I was already convinced this would be a very important part of the project, the foundation for the rest of it, and the actual lesson confirmed this.

I have to be honest: when I first read very quickly the pages I had just printed and saw “What is your life purpose?”, I completely freaked out: how was I supposed to answer that question?? πŸ˜‰

Then I thought that Marcia would never give me such a deep question without making me ready to answer it, and I read more throughly.

I was right, the lesson and the article provide great starting points to fuel your thinking. Of course, if you expect one of those “one size fits all” kind of course that will give you answers without you having to reflect and dig a bit deeper, you’ll be disappointed.

I started by reading the documents a couple times during the first two days, and I always had the questions and articles in a small corner of my head, sometimes without noticing it.

Unconsciously, it matured and after a couple days I was ready to grab my pen and start filling the forms. The point was to reflect on why I want to simplify my life and what is the goal, what it’ll look like one the process is complete (if such a process can ever be “complete”!).

To me, “simple” is another word for “peaceful“.

I want my life to be easy, to “flow” smoothly, I want to feel comfortable with the people, the things, the activities that are in my life and how they make me feel. My simplified life would be balanced, with a good mix of lightness, of ease and deep relationships (including with myself).

Some things that are blocking me to get this simple life are mainly some character traits, like my (quite frightening) ability to create drama, my taste for arguing and wanting to always be right, laziness that makes me waste myself (my time, my energy), gossiping, negativity.

To fight against those traits I basically have to be more conscious, more mindful of what I do, what I say, how I think. I must make purposeful goals and remind them to myself often, so that I stay focused on those. Baby steps, daily actions (maintenance is a big issue for me) and visual reminders will be powerful tools, I think.

Pfew, what a novel!! Thanks if you read all along! πŸ˜‰

Take care!

Wow, wow, wow!

What fantastic insights and it’s only week 1!!!!

I’m so, SO proud of you already – so glad you’re really digging in and asking yourself the hard questions.

Do you have any questions for Chloe? Or did any of her insights resonate with you?

And introducing guest blogger 2 – Chloe from France








Hi everyone,

My name is ChloΓ© and I’m so happy to be one of Marcia’s guest bloggers for her “Simplify Your Life” series.

I’m 31, I live in France with my boyfriend of soon-to-be 10 years Guy and our pets. We don’t have kids yet because of some infertility issues but we’re going through an IVF procedure, so hopefully this will change soon!

I work full time for the small town we live in, I’m in charge of the communication: the town magazine, the website, the press, the events’ organisation, the mayor’s speeches, etc. It’s a very stressful job but incredibly interesting. I’m also a digi-scrapper and an amateur photographer.

I’m pretty disorganized because I’ve never been taught, but I’ve realised how annoying it is and I’m trying to improve that.

I’m really aspiring for a peaceful environment and a simple life, but I didn’t know how to get it… until now!

I couldn’t pass the chance to guest blog for Marcia, first because I love her vision of organization and because her advices always work great for me, and second because of the e-course itself. I can’t wait to get started and share this journey with you.

Doesn’t Chloe have a great job? I think it’s awesome!

Leave your questions for her in the comments or otherwise just welcome her to the blog.

P.S. I personally can’t wait to follow along with the two ladies’ journeys.

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