Become a Fan
Being organized brings peace of mind, but there are things you should do before you begin organizing or cleaning your house. Start looking at your personal values, are you doing things that go against them? Is it time to take another look at how your behaviour may be adding to your stress levels? What can you do about it? Here's a start.
How many times have you vowed to get more organized even if it kills you? Everytime you shuffle through piles of paper on the desk looking for a bill you think you paid, or when looking through more piles near the telephone because you know you have that telephone number there somewhere, the thought likely strikes you that getting organized is really something you need to do. :)
If you are frantically jumping from one activity to another and life is controlling you, then you do have to stop and take a breather, then decide how you are going to rework your lifestyle to make it more satisfying and fulfilling. When you feel you have no control over the events in your day, it may be because life is managing you and you spend most of your time reacting to events rather than controlling them.
When we are pressed for time, running late or missing obligations because we spend time searching for things, forgetting appointments and perhaps neglecting important events or chores, we are apt to 'bend' the rules a bit.
Have you found yourself telling someone a lie because you forgot a meeting or appointment? Do you speed in traffic because you had to search the house for your car keys and you know you are likely going to arrive at your destination late for your event?
On top of the problems created from being disorganized which in itself is distressing enough, you may find that telling lies, breaking speed limits or otherwise going against your values adds greatly to your personal stress level.
So what can you do about this? Well first you have to just get started: look around you. What is the most upsetting thing in your life right now? Get a piece of paper, preferably a looseleaf book you can add to, and start writing down your thoughts. Divide your page into three sections.
1/ Family and Home life
3/ Spiritual/self improvement
Now under each section write down the top three things that are of most concern to you. Do you have three things in each area that are upsetting you? Do you have three things that need some kind of decision made? Is one area more of a problem than another?
Taking one section at a time, starting with number one on your list, jot down the answers to these questions:
Is this something that needs my attention or can I hand it over to someone else?
Is this something I need to make a decision on? If so, do I need more information before making my decision?
Is this something that needs improvement in someway? Is this area being neglected? Are most of my problems in this area?
Is this something over which I have no control? What can I do to minimize this problem?
This will get you looking at your lifestyle and may isolate the most pressing concerns. Instead of trying to deal with everything that is happening around you each day, start taking control of what you will deal with at any given time. Just because you pick up the mail, and find a bunch of bills, doesn't mean you need to worry about them just that minute. You do have to set up a system that will work for you and keep your bills sorted out so you don't overlook payments. That's a must do at some point.
If the bills are your biggest problem, then that is the area you will start with. Don't start cleaning the rest of the house right now, get your bill paying center set up. We won't be going into the ins and outs of budgeting and bill paying in this article but you do have to have a plan soon.
Each morning sit down and plan your day. Write down the things you are going to do, but try to make a list of only three to five items to accomplish each day. There will be interruptions and other things to do, but make a point to work on your three areas each day and try to do one thing to improve things in the areas that need it most.
Getting organized is one way to find peace of mind. Before you even start uncluttering or cleaning the house, start with yourself. You have a set of values, do you ever take time to think about them? What is important to you? What is important for your family? How best can you cut out the non-essential time consuming tasks that might be interferring with your long term goals? Now is the time to start working to improve your lifestyle, getting organized can reduce your stress levels and allow you to get more enjoyment out of life. You can do it!
Graphic courtesy of Clips Ahoy