1. Before you Organize

Listen to this in Podcast format

I’m assuming you’ve come to this blog because you’d like to get more organized. Your organizing will flow more smoothly if you consider a few things before starting.

What are your reasons for wanting to get organized? Perhaps you have more stuff than you can manage and want to trim down. Perhaps you want to keep everything, but just want to arrange it so you can find things, so that you have more space, or so that your atmosphere looks nicer and feels more pleasant. Perhaps you want to feel more comfortable inviting guests into your home. Perhaps you’d like to be able to park your car in your garage.

Please consider these questions.

What are your individual reasons for wanting to be more organized?
What would you like to accomplish?
How will you know when you’re done? If you could create your environment to be any way you want, and you can, what would it look like?

Now that you’ve looked at your motivations, let’s examine more closely what it means to be organized. I define organizing as: Arranging Your Possessions to Support What Is Important to You Now.

Every part of this definition matters. Let’s take a look at it piece by piece.

I’ll be talking mostly about ARRANGING POSSESSIONS. Although I will discuss related topics, including time management, the focus of this podcast will be arranging physical possessions.

We want to arrange those possessions so that they SUPPORT YOU, as opposed to you supporting them. Have you ever felt like you’re putting a lot of time and energy into maintaining your possessions? Sometimes we end up becoming a slave to our belongings. Well, it’s possible to have your possessions support you and empower you to have a better life.

We want to focus our energy on supporting what is IMPORTANT. You can have color-coded file folders in your file drawers, or neatly labeled plastic boxes in your garage, but if the stuff in those containers is not important to you, you’re not necessarily organized. In my opinion, the main purpose of organizing is to allow you to access stuff that is important, to do activities that are important, and to reach goals are important. I wouldn’t want anyone to spend any of their time, energy, or money arranging stuff that’s not important.

We want to consider what is important to YOU, as opposed to what is important to your parents, your spouse, advertisers, society, or anyone else.

Finally, we want to consider what is important to you NOW, as opposed to what may have been important to you three decades ago, three years ago, even three months ago, or at some arbitrary point in the past.

Once again, Organizing is Arranging Your Possessions to Support What Is Important to You Now.

Since organizing is arranging your possessions to support what is important to you now, the first step must be to be very clear about what is important to you now, and that’s the topic of my next post. I’ll invite you to take pen and paper and complete an exercise designed to bring clarity about what in your life is most important. I think you’ll find it to be a very worthwhile exercise, so I hope you choose to do it. Until then, may you continue living a life of meaning and value.

One Response to “1. Before you Organize”

  1. albroth says:

    Boy are you right on, everything above

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