Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Musings on Mood-Driven Organizing
Some days, I start with a list. Other days, I flit.

Sometimes, I'm a linear thinker. I create a to-do list and work my way through it, step by step, item by item. Methodically. Efficiently. When I'm drowning in projects, as I am right now, this happens a lot.

Other days, I'm more scattered, or the piles are too massive, or...something. On those days, I flit. I do this mostly in the morning, with more speed and energy if I'm also drinking my favorite Starbucks beverage (iced chai, preferably a venti, with an extra pump of chai syrup). Caffeine seems to increase my efficiency.

I start at the top of a pile (did I mention that there are typically multiple piles?) and simply move from one thing to another, tackling whatever's in front of me, in no particular order, except the order in which I uncover/come across it. I develop a rhythm, and though I may leap from item to item and project to project, I get a lot accomplished. One paper leads to another, which leads to a file, which leads to a magazine I must thumb through before tossing. The piles diminish, my stress level drops and the desktop - or at least a small portion of it - becomes visible once more.

Other times I start at the bottom of the pile -- an organizing trick I learned years ago, probably on HGTV's Mission: Organization. The items at the bottom of the pile, by virtue of having been there longer, are often outdated and/or easier to part with.

I'm a professional organizer's nightmare, moved by mood, not method. I'm a visual organizer, an I need to see it person, someone who has to see things in order to remember to do them. And, as a writer, I'm a creative person, dropping bits of ideas like so many bread crumbs, but lacking the time to sweep them all into a neat pile. When it comes time to make sense of the mayhem, I like being able to choose my plan of attack. 

My Type A friends shake their heads and smile that smile that says they think I'm hopeless.

I prefer to think of myself as flexible.

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