If you're getting in your own way when it comes to organizing, Lisa Hess invites you to check your beliefs at the door.
I don't know about you, but I'm certainly good at getting in my own way when it comes to organizing -- or at least I used to be. Finding my styles and working with them (instead of in spite of them) was a BIG step in the right direction, as was learning to organize with STYLE. But there was another part of organizing that was as ingrained in me as my styles: my implicit beliefs about organization.
Here are three I'm learning to kick to the curb along with the clutter.
Life is busy and ever-changing, so expecting a perfectly organized house or even a perfectly organized space to last more than 30 seconds is unrealistic. Enjoy perfection while it lasts, but don't spend every free moment pursuing it or trying to reclaim it. There are better ways to spend time.
An all-or-nothing attitude.
This one is related to perfectionism, but has more to do with how we dig in. When we look at a space in need of a little (or a lot of) TLC, we think we need to set aside a day, or even a weekend to restore the entire space all at once. Taking small steps and making progress a little at a time is not only less overwhelming, it's also more practical. A complete overhaul often leaves us searching for everything we put out of sight when we assigned new homes to all those items that had previously been visible. Doing things a little at a time gives us a chance to adjust and build on our new habits.
Believing that neat = organized.
Anyone who's ever thrown all of their desk miscellany into a deep drawer or stashed things in whatever space was available when company was en route knows that "neat" and "organized" are two different things. Sure, tidiness is a goal, but so is being able to find what we need when we need it.
Look around you. Find your successes and, when the day is finished, plan your next small steps. Learn to let go of stuff you don't need (like the attitudes above) as a matter of course, find homes for the things you want to keep and make easy upkeep -- not perfection -- your goal.
Now go put your feet up because, after all, what's the point of pursuing organization if it doesn't leave us a little time for fun and relaxation?
Copyright 2021 Lisa Hess
Images (from top): Canva Pro; copyright 2021 Lisa Hess, all rights reserved.
About the Author
Transplanted Jersey girl Lisa Lawmaster Hess is the author of a blog compilation, three novels, and three non-fiction books, including the award-winning Know Thyself: The Imperfectionist’s Guide to Sorting Your Stuff. A retired elementary school counselor, Lisa is an adjunct professor of psychology at York College of Pennsylvania. She blogs at The Porch Swing Chronicles, Organizing by STYLE, and here at Catholicmom.com. Read all articles by Lisa Hess.