Let me start by saying, if you're not an organized person, there's nothing wrong with you. Every person has their strengths and weaknesses! However, it is each individual's responsibility to work on those weaknesses so they don't become setbacks and stumbling blocks in our lives. That doesn't mean we have to completely change who we are; just simply make adjustments here and there to keep striving toward becoming better versions of ourselves. Simple enough? I get it, easier said then done. Let's start small by simply identifying some signs that it may be time to start thinking about getting organized. Here's my top 3! I don't want to overwhelm you, so we can discuss some more later in Part 2!
1. You're always losing or misplacing items.
Let's not completely blame it on poor memory. In some cases, you may simply just forget where you've placed something. But more times than not, it's likely that you're always unsure where an item is because there's been a break in the system or a complete lack of a system. What do I mean? If items don't have a home, then your space becomes a free for all for things to get cluttered and lost. It can be as simple as putting your keys on a hook or in a particular drawer as soon as you walk into your home. When you train your brain that the hook or the drawer is the "home" for the keys, you increase your chances of not consistently losing your keys in future. Of course it takes time for actions to become habit, so don't be so hard on yourself when you have slip ups. When you begin to assign a designated place various items, you're taking a HUGE first step. You've begun to intentionally think about how you choose to store your items. Because who has time to spend 15 minutes looking for those scissors, that tape, those batteries, that whatever when you need it.
2. You don't know what you have.
Uh oh! This one can really get us in trouble, especially when you have a lot of stuff. When you have lots of items that are unorganized, you aren't able to effectively keep inventory of what you have. This can lead to buying multiples of things or just getting overwhelmed with your environment because there's no system in place to keep track of what you have. So what's the best way to tackle this issue? I wish I had a magical less time-consuming response for you friend, but naw! My favorite organizing tip: "You haven't really organized if you haven't touched everything." I know...it sucks for those who like quick and painless methods, but physically touching each item as you sort through is a guaranteed way to know for sure what you have. Let's use a bedroom closet for example. If your closet has become so cluttered, unorganized, and overstuffed that you no longer know what you have, your best step toward organizing it is to take everything out. Yep...EVERYTHING. I like to just pile it all on the bed and begin picking up each item one by one and deciding whether to keep or donate it. In some cases you may have to add a trash pile if you come across dingy items that aren't in good enough condition to donate. This will save you lots of time in the future. No more, "I have nothing to wearI know it sounds overwhelming, but you can do it! And if you need a little help, that's what the professionals are for! It's so satisfying and brings professional organizers great joy to see a cluttered space turned to an organized and intentional space, AND it's a judgement free zone! We're here to help!
3. You get easily distracted and/or overwhelmed.
I can't say this one enough... Clutter and disorganization negatively affect your brain. The human brain has the amazing ability to store and organize information and turn in into memory. The brain is a naturally organized system by design. Think back to those days when you were in school and tried to cram large amounts of information in your brain at the last minute studying for an exam. I think we can all agree that it's not the most effective way to learn because you can easily get anxious and overwhelmed by everything you're trying to cram up there and remember. You didn't take the time to create a system to make it easier for your brain to retain the information, like spacing out your studying, repetition, writing notes and creating auditory reminders. The same thing happens when a person is consistently surrounded by clutter in their lives. The individual can become overwhelmed, stressed, and distracted by their environment, making them less productive. There really is something to be said about creating a clean working space and environment for your brain to function at its best capacity as it assists you with all of your daily tasks.
Whew! We made it through the first three signs that tell you it's time to start organizing! We'll address a few more later in Part 2. Until then, happy organizing!
Ordered space. Ordered life!