My Top 10 List of Organizing Myths

UnicornHas someone been lying to you? Or have you been lying to yourself about what being organized requires? OK, maybe lying is a strong word. There are many things we believe about things before we really know the truth. Organizing is no different. I came across this article I wrote seven years ago about organizing myths and truths and it’s still so relevant that I wanted to share it with you again today. I’ve updated some of my descriptions but haven’t made any changes to the myths.

Myth#10: Either you are “Born Organized” or not.
Truth: Organizing is a skill that anyone can learn.

Myth #9: Getting organized is such a time consuming, labor-intensive process.
Truth: It is actually a simple process that can be applied and utilized over and over. Isn’t NOT getting organized a time consuming, labor-intensive process?

Myth #8: It is impossible to stay organized!
Truth: Organization CAN be maintained as long as your system is customized to fit your needs/preferences and can grow and change with you.

Myth #7: I have to throw out all of my stuff.
Truth: Not true. You may need to edit or minimize your belongings, but only after determining a keep criteria and evaluating items based on what you use, love and want in relation to the space you have.

Myth #6: I should be able to organize my rooms in a day or two and it will look like those organizing shows when I am done.
Truth: Only if you have a team of 10-20 consultants and professionals. Your life or home did not become cluttered and chaotic overnight and it likely cannot be fixed overnight.

Myth #5: If I could just buy the right container… (or planner)
Truth: Containerizing actually works counter intuitively for most of us. We purchase containers and then expect to organize our stuff with them. The most effective and efficient method is to purchase containers/supplies after you’ve had a chance to sort, purge and begin to give things a home.

Myth #4: In order to be organized, I have to be obsessive about details and focus on perfection, minimalism, and flawlessness.
Truth: Organizing success does include minimizing and editing your belongings, but you do not have to organize your canned goods in alphabetical order with the labels facing the same direction to be successful. And being neat & being organized are sometimes two different things. It’s about finding and maintaining systems or processes that work for you and your family. The more customized a system is the more likely you are to stick with it.

Myth #3: It costs too much.
Truth: The process can actually cost very little (in dollars) if you use what you have, in fact, it can help save you money (duplicates, waste, time). I have clients that spend little to nothing on supplies. It does take a bit of time investment to create and maintain it.

Myth #2: If I have read every book {blog, magazine, etc.} and still can’t get organized, it’s hopeless.
Truth: Books offer some great information and tips and there are some basic concepts to getting organized. However, you need to customize systems, processes, containers, etc. to work for you! And you cannot get organized by simply reading a book- you must put things into practice.

Myth #1: ‘Getting organized’ is an event or destination.
Truth: ‘Getting organized…’ The words seem to summon the idea that it is a destination. Why don’t we ever seem to arrive? Because organization is not a destination- a place you spend time traveling to, eventually to arrive at and remain until you decide to leave. It is not a one-time event either. So, think of it as a practice, a journey, a state of being or most simply a ‘lifestyle’.

Are there any “truth’s” in my list that you have a hard time believing? Do you have any to add to the list? Please leave me a comment. I’d love to hear more about you and your organizing challenges!

One Response to My Top 10 List of Organizing Myths

Leave a reply

FREE Resource Guide

Define, Design, Do {BE SIMPLE} Quick Reference Card