Teacher Tidy Up… Keeping the Piano Studio Sane

Last month I announced that I would be sharing one organizing tip each month. I am one of those people who enjoy being organized, but am constantly working on aligning my habits to get there.

The truth of the matter? The more organized I am as a teacher, everyone benefits. I am calmer and more put together. My students get the benefit of my calm demeanor and there is a steady expectation being met in piano lessons. Both my students and my family get the best of me – not the burnt out leftovers of my energy.

Does this sound unattainable? You may feel like you’ve gone down a black hole that is impossible to climb out of. Never fear! I am a firm believer in changing small habits to get big results. And voila… we now have Piano Teacher Organizing Tips to help you along 🙂

In January we talked about the Backwards Planner – you can read about it here. 🙂 Keeping track of details in the moment can go a long way in saving time and headache later!

This month I present you with the 10 Minute Tidy-Up. You likely have heard of this before. It’s not a novel and new idea, but rather a tried and true trick to keeping life manageable. The key? Spending 10 minutes tidying up today and tomorrow and the next day (and so on) will result in sparing hours of cleaning later.

In short? “Good organizing is not about changing your personality – just your habits.”

The habit of 10 minutes makes cleaning manageable on a day to day basis. Your habits change, and suddenly you will FEEL more organized.

For me, this takes a few different forms. Minimum 10 minute tidy up of my house in the morning before I leave. Then a 10 minute tidy up of my piano studio at the end of the day (we all know what it looks like after online lessons!). Then a 10 minute tidy up to end the day at home. A minimum 30 minutes of tidying up in a day … usually turns out to be very easy if I just put my phone away and choose organization and cleanliness instead of social media!

Some people don’t seem to mind mess. But it is true that we work better in clean and put together environments. 10 minutes here, 10 minutes there… and suddenly the full cleaning days become few and the productive work days and set-aside family days become more robust and fulfilling!

The best part of the 10 minute tidy up? If all I have is 10 minutes, I know that it is worth using to do a bit of cleaning. But if I have more time available, 10 minutes is the prompt I use to get going. It doesn’t have to stop there! If there is extra time, and I’m in the middle of something, I naturally want to finish it.

Pro tip? I use this same logic with my struggling practicers. I find that often the biggest hurdle in getting good piano practice in is simply sitting down on the bench. Once a student is sitting there, they often will stay longer than 10 minutes! (Which is of course the final goal 😉 )

Do you do a 10 minute tidy up? In your studio? At home? How does (or could) this habit lead to positive changes in your life? Prepare yourself for the big spring cleaning days or the yard clean up work. Know that you will have to organize and re-organize your studio for the best results. But keeping up with 10 minute tidying will make the big days days easier to swallow and less frequent!

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