One question I am asked when meeting someone new is “So, what do you do?”. More often than not, when I tell them I am an Organization Consultant, they ask a handful of questions such as: “Oh, you’re one of those people with all your spices alphabetized?” (This one happens to be true.) Or “I would love to see your house. I bet it’s perfect!” *insert awkward silence here*
Monica Ricci, Professional Organizer, speaker and blogger extraordinaire posted today about flexibility. She hits on an important misnomer about organizers as a ruler-wielding dominatrix-type group. For most of us, this could not be further from the truth! She then goes on to say:
“Getting organized is a process not a singular event.”
I could not agree MORE!! It’s not that once you decide you are going to “get organized” wave your magic wand, spread some pixie dust and everything is instantly different. It’s going to take time and work to get there. As long as you are making headway, celebrate! And remember, at the risk of repeating myself, say to yourself: “Progress NOT Perfection”. I might even revamp that to read, “Flexible Progress, NOT Perfection”. If you need to change your direction, do that!
After a side trip, just get back on track.
Monica’s post also references her recent shopping trip, she bought a box of Cap’n Crunch. Even though she has embarked on a great 18 month change of her eating habits, she took a little side trip. OK, despite the fact that I have a weakness for sugary children’s cereals (yes, that IS a box of Cocoa Pebbles in my pantry), she has got a great point about her purchase. She is eating well and yet she sometimes makes a conscious decision to do something that brings her joy and then she will get right back on the wagon. Not a stitch of guilt involved.
Change is guaranteed, so flexibility is key.
Try not to get yourself so tied up with rigid systems or plans that you can’t breathe. Change is great and it’s a process. Remember one of the only certain things in life IS change. You have the power (and the privilege) to change your mind and do what works for you. Think back to those times when you were really hard on yourself – did you stick with what you were trying to accomplish? My guess is NO. So give yourself a break and live your life the way you want to! And for goodness sake, eat some chocolate once in a while! 🙂
Are you perfect? I’m not. Perfectionism holds too many back from organizing their spaces. They wait until they can do it perfectly, and that day never comes. Let’s get real about this perfectionism thing…
Un-Perfect Confessions of an Organizer.
We’ve all got a little chaos in our lives, including yours truly. Continue reading ““Organized” is NOT Code For “Perfection””
Last night I heard a wonderful speaker. He was a mix of different perspectives on life including counsellor and what some would call a Cultural Creative. Last night he spoke to a group of organizers about shame and its impact on us as individuals. I was completely fascinated by his talk.
The stories we tell ourselves.
One thing that stood out for me was a point he made about the “stories” we tell ourselves, and how those stories can change when we look at the actual data of our lives. For example, “I’m just a disorganized person” could be a story one might tell themselves. If you buy into that story, and that is what you believe (enough to say those words out loud) then it’s true in your experience, and probably in your physical environment. The fact is, accomplishing any goal or changing your life is how you look at it, and what actions you take to make that change a reality.
Before letting go…
I was also inspired by Ariane Benefits’ post on Joyful Jubilant Learning’s blog, “Things I Had to Unlearn Before I Could Let go of My Clutter”. Ariane’s story in her mind had to change before she could let go of her clutter. As she states in her post, the change she made had to do with unlearning certain behaviors, and changing her internal dialog and story.
Stepping up and moving forward.
I’ve been there – not organized from birth, and struggling with mountains of paper, keeping pictures of people I didn’t like, unfinished projects and things I kept because I thought I “should”. It’s a bummer to deal with when you have to look at it all, take responsibility and say “I did that”. Then, to step up and do something about it.
Action = forward motion.
To me, when actions motivate you to move forward, your story will begin to change. You realize that the change you seek has to start somewhere. So, it might as well be now, with a small step in the direction you are looking toward.
What’s your story, and what are you doing to change it?