Thanks to The Frenzied SLPs for hosting this organization linky party. I’m excited to share 3 organization tips I use daily to help keep me on time, prepared and on my game. Come on in!
I was raised with the understanding that being on time was actually showing up late. Being early was the only acceptable time frame. This really hit me hard in the first year or so of school based SLP work. Nothing ever happened on time! Even with the use of atomic clocks and a morning announcement of the “Rocky Time” (the school’s mascot is an eagle named “Rocky”) things never went like clockwork. But that didn’t mean I couldn’t! I use the alarm feature of my school Outlook account to receive an alert 5 minutes before the next student/group. On days when I’m scheduled back to back, I have a five minute warning to get wrapped up and cleaned up. On the rare occasion there’s not a a student/group in my office, I have five minutes to prep for the next one coming in.
For private practitioners who travel, I recommend the travel time feature when setting appointments to visit clients. When making an appointment on your iPhone, you can add travel time to your appointment. The images below show you the steps to take. If you’ve already entered a location for your appointment, the phone will use the map function to calculate an estimated time to get from point A to point B.
I find myself repeating the same information over and over to parents and teachers about what speech therapy is, the disorders we treat and how we treat them, as well as how we make decisions about eligibility. In order to save myself time, I use parent and teacher handouts that I keep in a small section of my desk drawer. I’ve color coded the forms for easy reference. When someone stops by my office asking about speech sound development or stuttering, I’ll briefly answer their initial questions and then direct them to the handout or website where they can gain more information on their own. I always tell them that I’m happy to answer more questions if they have some. Most people really only need/want the basics anyway, so having a few handouts available to just, well, hand out, has been a great way to educate and inform.
On my game
My mama has always said, “I’d better do this now while I’m thinking about it.” This has become my mantra. I’ve even taught my husband to do this! If the task takes less than 5 minutes, do it now. Then it is done. It seems over-simplistic, but this little trick will save you so much time in the long run. First, you’ll learn that many tasks don’t actually take up that much of your time. Second, you’ll learn what tasks really do need more attention. Third, you’ll make the smaller tasks part of your routine so that they don’t become overwhelming or more pressure inducing by building up.
I hope these tips have inspired you. Let me know how you’re staying on time, prepared and on your game in the comments.
Bonus Tip: Click here to see how I store some of my favorite articulation materials for easy access.