I’m like every one of you. I’m organized, but then I’m not. I’ve got 50+ pairs of shoes (I also have weaknesses, apparently) and I don’t know where to put them (weaknesses, too). I have a skinny closet and I’m not sure if my hangers are too fat (delusional, I must also be) or if I have too many dresses and too many jeans? Can one even have too many pairs of jeans?
Obviously, I’m also a little indecisive, and I’m learning that amongst indecision, crazy amounts of stuff, things to do, places to be, people to see and a naturally scatterbrained manner, I crave organization more than caffeine (or a nap) after 2 p.m. To deal with this, I’ve been re-imagining and re-invigorating my life. I have a new notebook that is strictly work goals and to-dos; I make time to drink plenty of water, go to bed early and take long baths. These little health focuses allow me to get done what I need to accomplish during the day, and while I’m nowhere near where I want to be yet, I’ve learned a few other tips along the way, too. For the scatterbrained, listen up:
Shelving. It’s the best thing since the clap-light. In a small space, or even a large space with lots of accoutrements, creating attractive shelving and building storage space above eye-level is a lifesaving endeavor. Decorative shelving can be found at hardware stores or even spaces like Hobby Lobby, where my own came from, and though many options may seem too short, shelves can be lined up to accommodate longer walls or in my case, stretches of shoes. Awesome: it’s also affordable.
Take it from the editor of two magazines and member of a local business where multitasking is as common as the sun: writing things down triggers your brain to remember things more quickly and easily. The physical act sticks with you more than making a “mental note” ever will. While I love a good pen-and-ink list, apps like Evernote, Do! and even Google Calendar allow for easy access and throw all cases of losing the list completely out the window (unless you literally toss your phone out the window, and then I applaud you…but don’t expect to get anything done after that!)
3. Defend yourself!
Being naturally ADD or scatterbrained is emotionally frustrating, and being around others with excellent organizational skills – those who get everything done and still manage to float through sane, beautiful lives – can be a downer. I understand this fight, and I understand the insecurity of comparing yourself to others. Here’s my advice: once you have your own ways established, defend them. There are specific ways to systematize and get through the day for everyone, and people who are scatterbrained physically need their own ways probably even more so than those who are naturally more put-together. Don’t let others get frustrated with you if you know your tasks will get done and in due time – just be responsible, respectful of their time and honest.
And here’s where my scatterbrained insecurity sets in: these tips don’t seem like enough! I could go on for pages, but for the sake of organization I have to stop at that pleasant number three (see what I did there?). I hope you take these tips to heart, however brief, because life isn’t about stressing out or getting things done. It’s about enjoying what we do get done and what that allows us to experience – maybe today’s tasks, for example, will make your day off next week that much sweeter. Need help and want to chat more about little ways to organize your life? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Now go home and have a glass of wine!