I just returned from the NAPO 2016 organizing conference in Atlanta. About 550 professional organizers from around the world gathered to learn about building organizing businesses, learn new skills, think about current and future trends, and discover the latest products and services to help our clients. There was a lot of note taking, conversing, laughing, photographing, tweeting, listening and observing. I loved seeing old friends and making new ones.
Some conference highlights included:
- Attending the IFPOA (International Federation of Professional Organizing Associations) meeting with the leaders from Japan, Canada, The Netherlands, The United Kingdom and the United States
- Going to the President's Black & White Reception with dancing and karoke
- Talking with current and potential ICD subscribers at the ICD Booth during the NAPO Expo
- Discussing influence of future trends on organizing industry including aging, downsizing, coaching, and technology
- Learning new ways to combine video with social media from Mindy Rodenburg
- Hanging out and talking with Denslow Brown
- Learning about Judith Kolberg's unique "to do" list, digital estate planning, and her dance break during her session
- Seeing hundreds of old friends and making new ones
The days were packed from morning until late night. Everywhere I turned, there were new people to meet and old friends to greet. I loved that part. In between conversations, I attended sessions to learn about new trends, ideas and concepts. During the sessions, I took notes and tweeted some highlights. Mealtimes gave us further opportunities to talk, connect and share ideas. Are you getting the picture? It was wonderful. At the same time, there was a lot to take in and process. And guess what? My heart was filled from connecting with all the amazing people, but so was my head. By Sunday morning, my mind felt full and cluttered.
Fortunately, I scheduled a later flight on Sunday. This gave me time to visit the Atlanta Botanical Garden to see the beautiful gardens and Chihuly exhibit. If you live in Atlanta or ever have the opportunity to see Dale Chihuly’s art, definitely go!
It turns out that one of the best cures for my cluttered mind was to spend several hours being outside in the sun, exploring nature, the gardens, seeing and photographing Chihuly’s vibrantly colored and organically shaped glass sculptures, taking in the wonderfully fragrant scents, hearing the sounds of water and birds, feeling the breeze, and walking along the winding paths.
Returning home, I gave myself time to sit by the river to collect my thoughts and review my notes. There are still many people to follow-up with and ideas to simmer and implement. However, by giving myself the time with nature and art, my cluttered mind has settled.
What helps you when your mind gets cluttered? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Come join the conversation!