How to Plan a Wedding While Working Full Time

how to plan a wedding while working full timeI feel like I’ve seen a bunch of fun threadjacks on this recently(ish), so let’s discuss this today: what are your best tips on how to plan a wedding while working full time (or, as many of you do, well more than 40 hours a week)? What are the best things to outsource as far as wedding planning goes — and what are the best ways to simplify wedding planning? And a corollary question: what wedding planning tasks can you do at the office? We’ve talked about homing from work, making personal calls on the clock, and a bunch of aspects of wedding and business etiquette (including whether you should invite colleagues to your wedding) — as well as wedding finances — but I don’t think we’ve ever had a post rounding up everyone’s tips on how to plan a wedding.

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The Best Financial Books for Beginners

the best personal finance books for beginnersIt’s been YEARS since we’ve talked about the best personal finance books for newbies, so we figured today we’d discuss the best financial books for beginners. Paying off debt, saving for retirement, and managing your money in general can seem overly complicated and intimidating no matter what your age — but especially when you’re a young professional — and these books use simple rules and straightforward concepts to educate people who are new to personal finance. What is your favorite personal finance book (or blog, or magazine, or podcast)? What was the best advice you took from it? 

Psst: In the past, we’ve shared our money roadmap, offered financial tips for women lawyers, pondered how to make a budget, discussed the pros and cons of cash savings vs. retirement savings accounts as well as paying down debt vs. saving, and much more. We also included several recommendations for finance podcasts in our podcasts for working women post.

Here are six of the best financial books for beginners:best personal finance books for beginners - image of book covers including Get a Financial Life, You are a Badass at Making Money, You Need a Budget, The Financial Diet, I Will Teach You to Be Rich, and The Total Money Makeover

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Do You Schedule Breaks to Increase Your Productivity at Work?

schedule breaks to increase your productivity at workWe recently discussed taking breaks at work: how long we work between breaks, if or how long we leave our workspaces on our breaks, what we do during them, and so on. While we’ve had many posts about productivity, including how to keep track of work to-dos, how to focus on work when other things are on your mind, and the best Spotify playlists to help you focus, we haven’t talked a lot about taking breaks throughout the day. Can you schedule when you take breaks at work? If so, do you tend to take a break at the same time every day? Do you schedule breaks on your calendar as appointments so that others know you are unavailable?

Even though breaks were allowed and even encouraged at most full- and part-time jobs I’ve held, I still wouldn’t stop to take my first “break” until 1 p.m. or later. Even then, it might’ve only been break time because I didn’t want to miss out on the last call for the office cafeteria salad bar at 2 p.m. I did, however, almost always take 45 minutes for lunch when I could. I would make it a point to take a long walk, read a book, or meet up with a friend.

We realize that for some of our readers’ high-demand jobs, it’s just not possible to take breaks, at least not frequently. For instance, as a trial attorney, on my docket days or days with back-to-back-to-back client meetings, or when I had trial prep, breaks weren’t always an option. I would often eat lunch at my desk, if I had time to eat at all, and I was lucky if I could get a few minutes to check my personal texts or emails.

Here are some tips we hope you find helpful when it comes trying to schedule breaks to increase your productivity at work:

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How to Schedule Repeating Tasks

As the New Year starts, I thought it might be fun to talk about how to schedule repeating tasks — specifically, what yearly things do you do, or have built in to your year (month? quarter?) so that you can help stay on top of all the various tasks that build up, whether for your personal life, career development, job search, or more?

I think it all started with the “year in review” posts I’ve been doing here at Corporette for about five years now, as well as my attempt to keep on top of family photos from the past year enough to do a family calendar (also from the past 5 or 6 years or so). But the past few weeks this “review tic” has spread and I’ve been TRYING to sort way too many things lately, hoping the task will become a yearly one.  Lately my focus seems to be on drawers, and in the past week I’ve gone through my desk drawer, my makeup drawer, my sock drawer, my filing cabinets — all for the first time in a zillion years. I’m considering doing a brain dump of everything I’d *like* to sort through, then parsing them out into a few a month… but, well, I haven’t had time to do that yet.  I actually used to have a cleaning system that kind of worked like that — each month had a different “big” cleaning task (windows, blinds, duvet cover, etc) and it was all fine when I was doing it myself but I never seem to think about it since we’ve been using professional cleaners for a few years now… I should put it back on my to do list! (When I gear up for our taxes in a month or so I’ll do my yearly financial review of all the different subscriptions we’re paying for, since I tend to forget anything on autopayment. Oh, I’m also trying to get rid of a ton of bags we’ve had building up to donate and recycle old clothes…)

I’m sure that some of you guys must have even better systems, though, so I’d love to hear what you do — what do you do “every January”? Do you have different tasks for every month of the year? Do you only do big things like that (reorganizing drawers and the like) as they bug you? (What do you delegate, and to whom?) How do you organize regular review tasks like that in a way that doesn’t get overwhelming but keeps your life running as smoothly as you’d like it to?

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Gift Idea: Theater Tickets

Theater tickets make great gifts. This Off Broadway comedy/drama production of Pride and Prejudice has piqued my interest in particular, and I’m probably going to be getting tickets for at least one person I know. Which plays or musicals have you seen recently? Are you buying any tickets (or gift certificates for them) for friends and family, or what have you gifted in the past that went over well? How about general recommendations — what theater would you recommend seeing (and where do you live)? Tickets for Pride and Prejudice are $82–$152. Pride & Prejudice

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How to Dress Professionally on the Coldest Days

Reader C wrote in, wondering how to dress professionally on the coldest days when going to court. We’ve rounded up our favorite winter coats, and talked about how to interview in a snowstorm — but I don’t think we’ve directly discussed what to wear to court in winter. Here’s her question:

I’m driving myself crazy trying to prepare my outerwear wardrobe for winter. I can’t get a clear answer on what people do on the coldest days when going to court. I have a VERY warm down-filled parka but I want something more polished for court appearances. I’m curious about whether people change when they get there or dress less appropriately and just brave the walk over? Does it make more sense to get a sleeker parka for all the time or a longer wool coat for the court commute?

I’m sure this is going to vary a lot from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and I can’t wait to hear what the readers advise for how to dress professionally on the coldest days and what to wear to court in winter. (Psst, here’s all of our advice on courtroom attire for women lawyers…) For my $.02:

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