Writing Gremlins: Disorganization
Confessions of an out-of-sight-out-of-mind, piles-everwhere, disorganized messy. I guess that title is a bit long, but it’s pretty accurate. I am the bane of my husband (and my daughter) because everywhere I go, I have piles. I don’t mean to, but they appear none-the-less. You see, if I put something away, it will be lost to me forever. My piles are organized in my brain, but their aesthetic value, um, not so much.
I tend to be this way on-line as well. My desk top is cluttered because saving something in documents means consigning it to the nether-world where it may never be seen again. This happens in part because I can’t remember what I called it. Yep, lets blame it on poor memory. While Gram is quite able to organize, she is a perfectionist who gets bogged down in trying to do it ‘just right’. Imma, on the other hand, is a messy extraordinaire. She’s easily distractable and has a tendency to flit from project to project without finishing what she started.
I’m sure you can see why the existence of these two in the same brain could cause organizational issues.
Disorganized people tend to be less productive than organized people. This is because they spend a lot of time looking through piles (even when they know exactly which pile to look through) in the hunt for a needed item. They also never complete some projects that get swept into the nether world by a bunch of new piles. They fight distractibility and time management issues. AND they cause other people in their lives to have chronic headaches! If you’ve ever moved something of a piler’s, you know exactly what I mean.
Knowing the problem is half the battle, right? I wish. Knowing the problem is a good thing, but it doesn’t often help the disorganized messy to change. You see, they often have no idea how to go about the change process, because the same underlying issues still haunt them. Tackling the
mess disorganization (in a way that will stick) is often a life-long process. Imma and Gram have used many organization techniques over the years, but inevitably, it hits an epic fail at some point. As writers, this blasts their productivity and takes time away from other tasks on their agenda. Disorganization, especially for the writer, means a lot of extra work in the end.
Gram and Imma would like to share some techniques that have helped them to find a happy medium when it comes to disorganization.
1. KISS–Keep It Simple Stupid! This is probably the most productive technique. We tend to complicate things and that leads to disorganization. If we remember to keep it simple, we do much better.
2. D-Stuff–Too much stuff to keep track of lends to disorganization as well. De-stuff-ing requires assessing what, in the areas of time and things, is most important and what can be culled. Not every good thing is the best thing, and choosing the best over the good gives us less we have to organize.
3. PAIN!–Put it Away, In its place, Now! Another problem the messy confronts is
laziness distraction before a task is completed. A new task calls, previous task goes in a pile, and the pile grows as previous tasks never find their way to their HOME.
4. HOPE–Have One Place for Everything and put it there every time. This one requires follow-through. The messy cannot afford to ‘do it later’ because later never comes. It also requires discipline (gulp!).
5. LITE–Like Items Together Every time. Sometimes we tend to micro-organize which means more to remember. So instead, put all office items together in the same area and so on. This one harks back on KISS.
6. OUT–One Undertaking at a Time! Multi-tasking is all well and good for some, but for the disorganized, it leads to chaos. Only you know how many tasks you can complete at the same time. Sometimes, keeping the other items in mind as you go can head off the disorganization that comes from multi-tasking (and not completing any of the tasks). The definition of complete in this context goes all the way to putting everything away when done.
How about you? What suggestions do you have to help the disorganized? Do you need help yourself? How does disorganization distract you from your writing? Do you have a story to share? Why is organization important for the writer?
- Teachers: 5 Tips to Help the Disorganized Student (1-2-3getorganized.blogspot.com)
- Does your Office Have a “No Messy Desks” Policy? (bostinno.com)
- The pile of pain… (ryancarriesharpe.wordpress.com)
- 3 Ideas to Improve Your TiME™ Strategies (pbsmartessentials.com)
- Hi, I’m Krista and I’m a Piler…. (organizeinstyle.typepad.com)
- The 12 Dysfunctional Personal Productivity Personalities (lumbertribe.wordpress.com)
- Secrets to time management… (davidkanigan.com)
- Cleaning Up Your Workspace (bostinno.com)
- Clean Your Messy Desk, Lest Ye Be Judged (businessweek.com)
- Clutter, clutter everywhere… a housewife confession (thenewlywedwife.wordpress.com)
- Effecting Stress Relief by Clearing Out the Clutter (savings.com)
- Clutter Creep: The ‘Elephant in the Room’ (prweb.com)
- Blog post by Teressa Pence Morris (bloggymoms.com)