What Organizing Isn’t

This post was originally published on my consulting site 2OrganizeU.com in July and I wanted to share it here as I think it belongs with the 31 Days of Real Life Organizing series. I’ve expanded a bit and added notes on each item here.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about organizing…How does one define it? What does it look like? What does it feel like? And, I’ve decided to attack it from a different angle. Rather than what it IS, let’s look at what it ISN’T, shall we?
A destination. You never actually arrive and stay in one place.
All about aesthetics. If you focus your energy primarily on what organizing looks like, your systems will probably break down. Function first, form second.
Cookie Cutter. Just because it works for someone else doesn’t mean that it will or should work for you. And, vice versa.
Expensive. The act of perpetual organizing and purchasing of products can be expensive but so is purchasing duplicates, missing deadlines and losing things. Being disorganized is expensive.
Too time consuming. Even if you take 15 minutes per day, you can make significant progress…as long as you have a plan.
Time suck. If you clearly define what being organized does (& doesn’t) look like and what your vision is, organizing doesn’t have to consume your life. Just the opposite, really. It should create opportunities.
What you see on TV or in magazines (or a blog). These forms of media are all based on how something looks and can be diminish the time, energy and money that goes into creating a space.
Absolute use of every square inch of space. Having room to breathe, physically, visually and mentally is liberating.
Complicated to setup and maintain. Only if you’re doing it wrong.
Rigid. Contrary to popular belief, being organized frees your mind from nagging tasks and commitments and allows you to create freely.
Perfect. If your striving for perfection, this probably isn’t the place for you. For me, perfect = fake {or at least unattainable}
A competition. Ok, maybe for some it is. But, really, comparing someone else’s outside to our inside is just a losing battle. Plus, organizing for someone who doesn’t live with you or contribute to your household seems pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it?

What do you think? Is there an item in my list that resonates with you? Or do you have one you’d like to add to the list? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

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