Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Connecting the Dots to A System that Works
@HughMacLeod via
As each semester progresses toward its end, I tell my students that we're reaching the "connect-the-dots" part of the semester  the time when all of the concepts we've been discussing in isolation should be coming together, at least in places, for a deeper understanding of the subject matter.

This popped into my head this morning because of a post I wrote today over at The Porch Swing Chronicles  about turning words into actions, and how good it feels to walk into an improved space. All of this led me back to connecting the dots, and how well that fits in with the theme of trouble-shooting that's part of the E in STYLE, Easy Upkeep.

If you've been reading this blog for a while, chances are you've already begun connecting the dots. If you've identified your personal and organizational styles, you might already be using them to re-vamp parts of your home or your organization plan at your place of business. You may be foisting this way of looking at things onto unsuspecting family members as you identify their styles and/or choose containers that work for you, or that you believe will work for them. Maybe you, like me, have even seen progress.

Understanding how you've made that progress is a key element of Easy Upkeep. Do baby steps lie at the heart of your success? Did something click into place once you understood how you organize best? Did changing your containers to match your style make it easier to put things away now and find them later? Or, was it simply assigning homes to wayward items that helped you create spaces that work for you?

If you've had some successes (small or large), take a moment right here, right now to congratulate yourself before you read any further. If you're so inclined, share one in the comments section.

Why did I feel the need to stop and put you in the spotlight for a minute there? Because it's important to celebrate successes as a means of keeping in mind that progress and perfection are two different things. Progress is worth celebrating, not only because we all deserve a pat on the back from time to time, but also because it's a key element in Easy Upkeep. Knowing what works in reality because it has a proven track record for you is the key to keeping the momentum going and keeping motivation high when... happens. And when it does, another key part of Easy Upkeep is troubleshooting, via questions like these:

  • What do I always have trouble finding? (That item needs a home).
  • Where do I put ___________? (That item also needs a home, and perhaps not in your home).
  • What part of my home or organization process is still not quite right? (Too many homeless items? Wrong containers? Wrong system?) 
As you walk through your home, how do you feel? Can you spot your successes? Can you make a plan to improve upon the areas that drive you crazy? 

Next week, we'll discuss the final element of Easy Upkeep: looping back to the STYLE process. 

Start with successes
Take small steps   
Yes, it has a home!
Let it go
Easy upkeep

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