HR-080215-Ara4-1Cleaning can be a tedious task, but it doesn’t have to drain your time. With this three-step formula from Laura Stack — aka the “Productivity Pro” — you can increase productivity and have more time for fun in the sun.

• Get ready to tackle the clutter.

Start by labeling five large boxes: Put Away, Give Away, Store, Shred and Trash. Then select the area that needs to be organized first. Instead of viewing cleaning as an all-day task, take an hour here and there to get the job done. When you’re ready to begin, set your timer for 50 minutes. When it buzzes, use the last 10 minutes of your organization session to handle the boxes: put things away, place charity items in the car, put items in storage, shred paper and toss out the trash.

• Get set and put a plan in place.

Anything that goes together should be stored together. Find attractive boxes, baskets, toolboxes and totes to organize common items such as batteries, make-up, tools, cleaning supplies or gift-wrap. As you group similar items together, avoid keeping too many of the same items. Do you really need five spatulas or dozens of sweaters? The next time you think about purchasing something you already own, give serious thought as to what you are willing to give up.

• Let go of all the clutter.

Paper piles can stack up fast around the house, so shred sensitive documents with a reliable Fellowes shredder. The jam-proof Fellowes 79Ci works for large shredding jobs and can cross-cut up to 16 sheets per pass and run for 20 minutes. For smaller shredding jobs, try Fellowes P-12C that destroys 12 sheets per pass with a five-minute run time. Both shredders can be found at If you’re still having a hard time parting with certain things such as clothing or kitchen gadgets, place a tag on each item with the date one year from now. If you use the item, take the tag off. When that date arrives, anything that still has a tag goes.

This article is courtesy of Brandpoint.

When cleaning, look for paper shredders with productivity-boosting features that help you complete your yearly rituals quickly and efficiently.