The core of my work as a Professional Organizer is to help my clients be more efficient and productive which in turn, as I see it, gives them more time to do things they enjoy and reduces stress.
So to that end I’m always trying to figure out why some folks have more trouble than others sticking with some of the solutions we agree to implement. After giving this some thought I decided one culprit is inconsistency.
One of my favorite examples of a great organizing system is the kitchen drawer with the eating utensils neatly stacked in a caddy. Putting utensils away and getting them out to set the table is a snap, requiring no thought at all.
In my 15 years of organizing no one has ever told me that this system doesn’t work for them or that they stop or forget to use it from time to time. This is the gold standard for all other organizing systems.
So why aren’t you as consistent with other systems you create? Here are 4 reasons people are inconsistent :
1. You or members of your family revert to your old habits for a few days and the new system starts to fall apart. In frustration you throw up your hands and give up on the new system all together.
If you really like the new system don’t give up on it! Research shows that it takes 21 days to create a habit and I’d say it often takes longer. Don’t give up! If you’re committed to a more organized life be committed to giving the new systems time to become a habit.
2. You decide the tool is the problem. For example you don’t consistently write appointments in your calendar and you decide it’s the calendar’s fault, it just doesn’t work for you.
In most cases the calendar isn’t the problem. The problem is you don’t consistently use the calendar; you think you can remember your schedule so you don’t bother writing things down. You may be right in that you can remember your schedule until it gets crazy then things start falling through the cracks and you get stressed. Use your calendar during quiet times AND busy times and take the stress off your brain.
When you find yourself not putting things in your calendar think about what’s going on. Reexamine your behavior not the tool.
3. You don’t have a system at all – there’s no rhyme or reason to where things go. When it’s time to put something away you put it in any old place unlike the eating utensils which always go in the same place.
The solution is to create a home for everything and consistently put things back in their home.
4. Lack of confidence. If you’re not confident in how you’ve organized your home you may think you’re not doing it right. When you don’t have confidence in your systems you don’t use them consistently.
I’m a big believer in that if your system works for you then you are doing it right. Yes, there are basic rules to organizing but one of the important rules is having systems that work for you even if they don’t make sense to anyone else.
In my opinion, one of the major benefits of being organized is to know exactly what you own and where it is when you need it. To achieve that you need to give things a home and consistently put them in that home. I know it’s not always as simple as I make it sound.
I love helping people take control of their space and live simpler, less stressful lives. If you need help let’s talk about it; give me a call or text at 603-821-0736, I’d be thrilled to help you!