|My Husband & I |
Confession: I’m somewhat of a pack rat. It goes back to my roots. My father never liked to throw away anything on paper. This summer while going through his attic, we found stacks of boxes filled with documents and paperwork from years and years ago. My attic would probably look much the same if I hadn’t married a man who hates the very idea of clutter. His upbringing was the opposite of mine. Even with six children, his parents never kept anything unless they absolutely had to, probably because they moved around quite a bit.
So what happens when a pack rat marries a bohemian by nature? At first there was patience and mutual understanding. Then there was friction. And finally, an education. I taught him the value of saving not only what was important but what was also sentimental. He taught me that I don’t need to cling to everything I’ve ever touched in order to survive. Soon I had him filing things alphabetically and he had me throwing away bags of magazine cut-outs I had been hoarding since eighth grade. And you know what else I learned? Organization and life in general is easier without clutter.
I thought organization was a brilliant topic for January because it’s the perfect time to declutter, to start fresh. Another important thing to note here is that I’m messy, and my husband is a neat-freak. (Can you guess who the early bird vs. the night owl is?) If we can make organization work together, I’m convinced that everyone can. So here are a few tricks I use to stay uncluttered and organized….
#5 – Pick one day out of every month for organization alone. For me, it’s the fifteenth of every month. Not only do I do a clean sweep of my office and make sure everything in my filing cabinet is compiled neatly and accurately; I also back up the hard drives on both of my computers and do full system virus scans on both machines. If the fifteenth just happens to be a busy day outside of the house, I have a strict rescheduling policy. Me being the messy sort that I am, by the fourteenth of every month my office can be a disaster area. My monthly organizational spree helps to keep the clutter under control and life with the bohemian even merrier!
#3 – Write down ideas in spiral-bound notebooks. I’m a writer. Paper is my friend. But it can also be my enemy because it adds up. I have one filing cabinet and half of it is for bills, payment confirmations, and other important documents and nothing else. When I first began living with my husband, he solved my paper dilemma by buying me several notebooks of various sizes. The big ones I kept throughout the house to have close whenever an idea struck. The little ones I kept in my purse and traveling bag when we were away from the house. I haven’t quite learned how to make pens appear at will as my notebooks seem to, but my husband and I no longer have to worry about thousands of sheets of loose-leaf paper rising up in the middle of the night and leading a hostile takeover against us.
|Sassy watching me organize on the 15th.|
If you’re a writer who thrives in organization and simplicity as well, I would love to your ideas for decluttering your office, computer, and your creative mind!