Organised Chaos - home and office tidying and reorganisation
Judith Morris - Organised Chaos

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Stop tidying - start living! - 22nd February 2021


I am not a fan of tidying. In fact I think mostly it's a complete waste of time! Does this surprise you? Surely decluttering is all about tidying, isn't it? Well, no actually - it isn't!  Let me explain.

Most of my clients are inclined to spend (waste) a lot of time tidying up. For instance, they notice that the kitchen table has attracted a pile of clutter and so they tidy it up. A few days or weeks later they are horrified when they realise that all the clutter seems to have returned to the exact same place all over again! In fact this is a cycle they are stuck in. They tidy it. It comes back.

They simply don't understand what is going on! Maybe this situation is familiar to you also?

What IS going on?

Mostly, tidying is about giving an untidy cluttered area some attention and making it look better. It's a cosmetic result rather than a permanent result. Arranging things neatly into piles or lining things up doesn't make your clutter disappear. For a while it looks neater but that doesn't last.

What's absent from this situation is having dedicated storage space for all the things you own. Then if an area of your home looks a little messy instead of shuffling things around to make them look nice you will pick up those items and put them exactly where they belong! You might even realise that some of the stuff you've been tidying is in fact clutter. So you just get rid of that obviously! To be honest, once you have that dedicated storage for most items you will put things away when you have finished using them!

Yes, I know. Shocking isn't it?

How to break the cycle of tidying!

As usual, with any habit you wish to change, self-awareness is key here. What you need to do is actually notice when you are engaged in cosmetic tidying. Slow down your thought processes and actions when tidying. Normally it's something that's done quickly for effect without too much conscious thought. Get to the point where you can stop yourself in mid-tidy and realise you are wasting your time. Or maybe you realise that you tidied this same content just two days ago?

So just STOP!

Now look at this pile of stuff and ask yourself, where does it all belong?

At this point you can either put away most of it at least OR you have the dawning realisation that you have no storage system to accommodate the things you habitually tidy.

Do not despair!

There is a kind of shared logic in regard to how we store certain things like clothing for instance, or milk. I mean, you wouldn't put your clothes in the fridge and your milk in the wardrobe, would you? Notice how this logic means you know instantly where to put these items and find them when you need them. So, you need a similar kind of approach to everything you store in your home.

Your perfect storage system is dependent on your own logic. Perhaps you find it hard to unravel that solution by yourself? I can help you do this and rest assured I won't be telling you how and where to store things, I'll be helping you to work out how you need to store things so you can put them away AND find them when you need them. You won't need to be asking me where things are!

The result is far less time spent tidying!

Please get in touch for a chat about how I can help you create your own logical storage system so you can take a break from tidying. I'm currently working on putting together a 'Logical Storage' workshop that will take place on Zoom in a small group. Several people in my FB group said they would find that helpful. Maybe it also appeals to you?


Keywords: tidy, tidying, storage


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