KonMari Your Phone

Y'all. I think I might have cracked the code.

Lately, I've been REALLY struggling with my phone, especially Facebook. I'd find myself mindlessly scrolling through my newsfeed when there were so many other things I could be or needed to be doing.

It had gotten so bad I'd thought about setting a special code for the app but that required ANOTHER app and I wasn't up for that. I tried moving it out of the easy reach of my thumb. I tried turning off notifications. 

Nothing worked.

Come 11pm there'd I'd be laying in bed mindlessly scrolling.

I was JUST about to take a friend's advice to set Guided Access every time I opened the Facebook app when I read an article in the New York Times entitled Read This Story Without Distraction (Can You?) that lays out the case for single-tasking. This bit in particular caught my eye.  

“It’s a digital literacy skill,” said Manoush Zomorodi, the host and managing editor of WNYC Studios’ “Note to Self” podcast, which recently offered a weeklong interactive series called Infomagical, addressing the effects of information overload. “Our gadgets and all the things we look at on them are designed to not let us single-task. We weren’t talking about this before because we simply weren’t as distracted.”

The idea that single-tasking is a skill to be developed really appealed to me so I immediately signed up for the Infomagical series. I can't recommend the entire series enough but it was on Day Two that I learned one thing that changed EVERYTHING.

On Day Two, they teach you how to KonMari your PHONE.

When the host first announced the day's challenge, I actually exclaimed, "OHH!" 

We all know I love me some Marie Kondo and her KonMari method. Why hadn't I thought to apply to my digital life!?! 

The process is simple. You hold down the apps until they do that little jiggle dance. Then you go app by app and decide which app sparks joy... just like Marie Kondo recommends you do with your physical objects.

THEN - and this is key - you put every single app in one folder on your home screen.

Christopher Mims, whose article "The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up – Digitally" inspired this exercise, explains why this is important.

"By putting all of [your] apps into folders, you can search for them by name. What happens is your device becomes task-oriented, instead of the place [where] you go to be like, 'OK, what do I need to do next?'"

This was an A HA! moment for me immediately because this is what happened to my television viewing when we cancelled cable. No longer could I just turn on the TV and let it (or my DVR) lead me where I wanted to go next. Now, I have to decide what I want to watch so I can go find it on Netflix or Hulu or Amazon.

No joke I went from watching 1 to 2 hours of television a night to 1 to 2 hours of television a WEEK.

This approach made sense to me so I immediately KonMari'd my phone.

Every app (except my camera) into one folder.

Literally, five times within the first few hours I would click the home button habitually only for my thumb to drift up to... nothing. I'd realize there was nothing to mindlessly click, abruptly realize what I was doing, and shut down my phone.

I can't overstate the impact of that. I've tried so many times get control of my digital habits but it is difficult because I can't simply go cold-turkey or delete Facebook because of my work. Now, I have an ACTUAL solution that changes my behavior instead of depending on my will power.

It feels like a new day!

Do you struggle with information overload? Show me pics if you KonMari your phone!

5 Powerful People Who Keep Me Motivated


It's that time of year. Time for resolutions and goals and reassessing what you do right and what you can do better. This is one of my favorite times of the year because I LOVE self-improvement. I'm a bit of a junkie if I'm being honest.

It probably all started in middle school when I read my first self-improvement book that recommended I list all the things I wanted to accomplish in my life. It was a comprehensive list that included Read the Bible (check!) and meet Dean Cain (still waiting...). 

From that very first list I was hooked and I'm always looking for big and small ways to improve my life. Over the years, I've found myself going back to the same experts over and over again when looking for inspiration. These are people that are also incredibly invested in the power of personal growth. These are people whose entire livelihood is based on their power to motivate. These people are my gurus. 

Gretchen Rubin 

In 2009, Rubin published her blockbuster bestseller The Happiness Project, which recounted her year long happiness experiment. For one year, she carefully examined and applied the science of happiness to see what stuck. I love this book so much that I re-read it every year month-by-corresponding-month. I have found that Rubin's approach of making small daily changes to impact your overall happiness incredibly useful and empowering. Not to mention, her honesty about her own weaknesses and challenges is completely refreshing. I read her blog religiously and can't wait for her new book on changing habits. 

Brené Brown 

When I first saw Brené Brown's TED Talk on The Power of Vulnerability I was completely overwhelmed by her authenticity, her insight, and her incredible compassion. I am a hard core devotee of her Daring Greatly style that embraces the idea that everything great in life involves overcoming fear and facing vulnerability. Every time she opens her mouth I learn a little bit more about myself and how to face all the emotions that come with being me. 

Michael Hyatt

Michael Hyatt is not for the faint of heart, but I promise you this - his positivity will wear. you. down. His goal is to "help you live with more passion, work with greater focus, and lead with extraordinary influence." He's not here to help you manage your emotions but help you manage your time and your work and your goals. He is my effeciency and productivity guru and I love his podcasts and blog for all the hardcore real-life tips he offers. 



Tara Sophia Mohr

I first found Tara Sophia Mohr through her 10 Rules for Brilliant Women. At first I thought she was your average inspire-business-women expert, but she has proven to be so much more. Better than almost anyone else she manages to address the socio-political AND emotional impact of being a woman in America today. She is the best combination of big picture insight and small picture advice. I absolutely love her. 

Standing Desks 101

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Sitting is slowly killing us

No matter where you work - whether it be from home or at a traditional office or from the bottom of an ocean on a submarine - chances are you spend a large amount of time sitting. We sit to work. We sit to eat. We sit down at night to relax.

There’s only one problem. Sitting is terrible for you. 

According to the Mayo Clinic, when you spend a large percentage of your day sitting you increase your risk for obesity, metabolic syndromes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. A recent study found that those of us who sat for more than four hours a day in front of a screen had a nearly 50 percent increased risk of death from ANY cause.

In other words, we need to get up out of our chairs.

Standing is the answer

Enter the standing desk, which is exactly what it sounds like. You stand at your desk and work. Instead of hunching over a keyboard, you stand with your feet planted firmly on the ground, you shoulders relaxed at your side, and your head facing straight in front of you.

I started using a standing desk over a month ago. At first, it felt a little odd to not sit down and dive into my work as I was accustomed to doing. However, I found it was much easier to maintain proper posture from a standing position and I immediately noticed less tension in my upper back and shoulders. I also find it easier to focus and move around the room when processing a new idea or concept.

Standing Desk 101

As the popularity of standing desks has increased, so have the options for anyone interested in standing while they work. For anyone who just wants to test out the idea, I highly recommend The Standing Desk 2200, a very clever DIY standing desk addition for your current desk. I built my own Standing Desk 2200 and it has been a great solution for me.

For anyone ready to commit wholeheartedly to standing, there are great options for all budgets with most experts recommending an electric desk that can also be lowered for sitting when your legs or back gets tired.

If a standing desk of any kind seems too extreme, you can commit to getting up and moving around regularly to help lessen the negative affects of sitting. 

5 Apps That I Can't Live Without



I use my iPhone for everything. EVERYTHING. I don’t just use it to text or check Facebook or take pictures. I use it to stay organized in basically every area of my life from work to parenting to home organization.

At least once a day, I tell someone about an app I love and what it does. Usually, I am met with shock that they didn’t know this perfect app existed and excitement over what it could do for them.

Then I have to spell said app about five times as they download it on the spot.

I know it seems like technology often makes our lives more complicated but, in my experience, if you can stop being intimidated and stay confident through a learning curve, these apps can make your life much, much easier.


This is my digital brain. Every note, every article, every blog post idea, every school calendar, every event plan, every vacation itinerary. It ALL goes here. 

In fact, Evernote is really MUCH more than an app. There is an online version, a desktop version, an iPad app, and iPhone app. They all sync, which means all the information we gather on a daily basis is available to us where ever we are.


Now, you cannot be intimidated. This is a powerful program but it can do as much or as little as you want. All you have to do is start using it! Here’s an a great article to give you an idea of what it can do.

Moment Garden

How often as a mom do you think “I need to write this down!”? If you’re like me, a lot. A funny quote, a silly dance, a great question. Kids are full of those little moments we all want to capture.

Now… how often do you actually record those moments?

For a long time, I would post them to Facebook or in a random notebook or in my journal. Then, I realized I would have no way of actually keeping all these digital and analog snippets of my children’s childhood. 

Then, I found Moment Garden. Now, all those little moments are in one – secure – place. I can email a moment. Upload a Facebook status or a photo. Each boy has their own “garden” and members of my family get email alerts when I post.

I absolutely love it.

Grocery iQ

Shared grocery lists, people! Meaning I notice we’ve run out of eggs and my husband knows this when we stops at the store on his way home!!

Do I REALLY need to say anything else?!?


UPDATE: Sadly, Twist is defunct but WAZE has this capability now! 

Listen, kids make you run late. It’s just the reality. They are slow. They can’t tie their own shoes. They’re lollygaggers is what I’m trying to say. 

Add in traffic of any kind and you’ve got a situation.

Twist is a fantastic app that let’s people know you are on your way. Meeting a play group? Send a twist to the group – don’t worry they don’t need the app! – and Twist will track your GPS and give them updates about when you will arrive.

I love it for when we travel. My mom ALWAYS wants us to text her when we arrive and I ALWAYS forget. Now, I just send twists to all our parents and move on!

This American Life

Some apps keep your organized. Some apps keep you sane.

Let Ira Glass save your from toddler conversation and entertain, educate, and enlighten you in the process. 

BONUS: Not every mom needs this app, but if you are a blogger or work in social media then sign up for Buffer and let it change. your. life. I am obsessed!