Grace in Chaos

Let’s be clear, a career in Marketing is sometimes best described as gracefully operating in chaos! As we start the New Year, this can be especially true as families attempt to get back into routine amidst the constant demands of work and life, which never seem to slow down.

But it doesn’t have to (always) be that way.

As we start the new decade, it’s a great time to evaluate how we work and find ways to establish some new habits to help stay organized and inspired.  And, as you get back into your busy schedule at work, and perhaps more so at home, try some of these tips and tricks to bring order to the chaos while staying creative inspired in 2020.


Tips for staying organized and inspired:

  • Inspire Yourself – Whether subscribing to, or more local organizations like (obviously),, or, stay in the know by having inspiration delivered right to your inbox.  Devote 5 minutes in the morning while you drink your coffee (and before you get pulled into the chaos) to inspire yourself. Or, take your inspiration on the go and listen to these Canadian Marketing podcasts: Under The Influence with Terry O’Reilly features stories about pop culture, marketing and human nature, Marketing Jam hosted by Darian Kovacs and Shaheed Devji covers tips, tricks and insights from the best Marketers, Growth Marketing includes various guests leading a discussion on growth, SEO, paid acquisition, conversion optimization, copywriting and more.
  • Find a System – Whether it’s a simple ‘to do’ list in a notebook, a spreadsheet with columns such as Today, In Progress, and Don’t Forget, or one of the many downloadable list apps, find a system that keeps you organized.  The key is to keep your running list of things to remember or get done (both short-term and long-term) off your mind and with a way to track your progress.
  • Schedule Everything – Your work calendar is your best friend, put everything in it. Colour coding appointments can make it easier to remember important meetings and ensure you’re spending enough time building relationships up, down and sideways. It’s also helpful to book start, leave and lunchtime to ensure your work/life balance is on point.
  • Nip Procrastination – Use the mantra of ‘if not now, then when?’ and tackle the most important tasks on your list first vs. the easy stuff. When you feel lacklustre about a task, assign a small amount of time (i.e. 15 – 30 minutes) to start the work with no expectations of fully completing the task.  You will often be surprised at how quickly you can get a sizeable amount of the work done or simply feel more motivated to dive in further.
  • Prioritize You/Family Time– We’re all guilty of it – being always on our devices, constantly checking work email, mindlessly scrolling through Social Media. To make your time/family time a priority, consider checking your devices (i.e. putting them in a drawer or somewhere out of sight to remove all temptation!) during the time windows you feel are important to connect.


We can’t eliminate the chaos but taking steps to control it will help you be your best self, at home and at work. And daily inspiration will help your work get noticed and stand out. After all, it’s 2020, so there really is no better time to start……because if not now, then when?!

About the Author:

Vanessa Barretto is Director, Business Planning (Consumer) for Shaw Communications Inc.

Vanessa is a passionate consumer marketer with progressive experience leading business and marketing strategy, integrated/digital-first campaigns and leading high performing teams.