People are fascinating, don’t you think?  I’ve yet to meet a person who isn’t fascinating (yes, that includes YOU).  Part of what makes you fascinating are the reasons you do what you do and the reasons you don’t do what you don’t do. It has a lot to do with your brain and how your mind works … or doesn’t work. Either way, you can do something about it.

Super helpful tool ahead … let me explain why first.

This past weekend I listened to a fantastic podcast by Dr. April Seifert on getting rid of mental clutter: How to Create a More Spacious Mind. April talked about four strategies to manage cognitive load and decision fatigue. One strategy really stuck out to me – REPLICATE. Create systems and habits so that tasks take less cognitive effort.  Genius!  How timely this podcast was because just one day before I was developing a training class for a client that included a strategy for this very topic.  I’m excited to share it with you right here, right now.

Photo credit: John Torcasio on Unsplash

SUPER HELPFUL TOOL – Systemize complex tasks using CHUNK, BLOCK, and TACKLE.

CHUNK. Break complex task into smaller tasks that can be completed in 15 minutes.

BLOCK. Schedule time on your calendar. Think about your energy cycles; do more difficult tasks when your energy is high and easy tasks when your energy is low.

TACKLE. Focus and resist distractions. Set a timer if it helps.

I can’t even remember where or when I learned this tool, but I can tell you that I use it A LOT. Use the two examples ahead to understand what Chunk, Block, and Tackle looks like in action.




  • Create areas for return to closet, store, donate, and throw
  • Remove everything from the top shelf and place in appropriate areas
  • Remove hanging items and place in appropriate areas
  • Remove items from floor and place in appropriate areas
  • Bag the throw items and put into garbage bin
  • Bag the donate items and place in trunk of car
  • Place store items into storage container and place in storage
  • Put all return-to-closet items back into closet
  • Organize items in closet if needed
  • Close closet door and do a happy dance!


  • Plan time for when I am home alone


  • Turn off television
  • Silence phone
  • Set timer on microwave or stove



  • Review notes from client meeting and write training objectives.
  • Create high level outline with opening/introduction, main points, and closing.
  • Expand outline with subpoints.
  • Determine which bullet points are lecture, individual activity, group activity.
  • Assign time needed for each bullet point.
  • Adjust timing and activities based on client timeframe.
  • Add deliverables, investment, schedule, title page with client logo, etc.
  • Proofread and edit
  • Email


  • 45 minutes at a time (three 15-minute tasks) up to 75 minutes at a time (five 15-minute tasks)


  • Clear my mind of other tasks on my to do list
  • Set an online timer
  • Do not look at or answer phone
  • Do not look or respond to emails
  • Ask others to not to interrupt until X time
  • Shut the door if I need to

Now, go Chunk, Block, and Tackle your mental overload!

For more tools to create space in your mind/day:

Why I Manage Time the Way I Do

Tackling Procrastination

A Reason to Say No

3 Time Management Myths