Today, I found myself clicking through unheard podcasts in iTunes as fast as I could just to clear them out of my cache. There I was, double clicking through them as fast as I could – and when going through the same podcast hearing the theme music and “Welcome” “Welcome” “Welcome” over and over again. Now, mind you, this was completely on autopilot; as if it was the most natural thing to do. The normal thing would probably be to just listen to the latest episodes of my favorites, anything that happened to catch my attention, and just let the unheard ones sit there. Nope. Not me. The little blue dots that lay to the left of each unheard line staring at me, taunting me. Well blue iTunes dots of voices unheard, information unlearned – you have met your match.
I suppose this is the same reason I have my google reader all nice and neatly sorted into distinct categories. And I have to click “Mark All as Read” after I’m done sifting through. Yes, have to.
And why the fridge being a mess really irritated me as I tried to make roasted bell pepper and white bean spread, roasted garlic butter, and olive tapenade for a lunch party at work tomorrow. And I’m using irritated lightly
4 steps to (m)organization
1. Create lists. Lots of them. Categorized lists. Grocery lists. To Do lists. Things you want to work on in your life lists. Meal plan lists. Books you want to read. etc. etc. Then, lose lists and write them again.
2. Arrange things appropriately. Coats go next to coats, red goes next to red, dairy goes next to dairy. Yes, even the coffee mugs belong next to the coffee mugs and not next to the wine glasses.
3. When possible use labels. I mean, anything for efficiency, right?
4. Cringe when something is not arranged appropriately or is not well managed and organized. However, do not say anything because you do (somehow) understand that other people are okay not leading their lives in an orderly fashion.
5. Throw out your own rules and lead your life very chaotically and messy for a few weeks. Become passionate about whatever you are doing and not focus on organizing your life. Then, on certain particular stressed out days, implement all rules at once until your life is back in compartmentalized order and you can breath.
Why are we so concerned with some parts of organization than with others? And, at what point does organization become an obsession – as if we have crossed some proverbial organization line that takes us from the normal amount to the crazy, compulsive, eyes bulging and turning red, mad mamade mim looking crazy.
The answer is in whether you are so organized that it becomes unproductive. If it is organization that will help you be more efficient later, then, by all means take time out of your day to organize. However, knowing that something will not kill you if it is not a certain way is important too. Organization is positively correlated with productivity – but only to a certain point. In this case, the cost (time and effort) of organization may not be worth the benefits (saving time and effort later). The sum of the time and effort saved should be greater than the time and effort originally spent.
By the way, I don’t actually use labels. Only on things things that really need them… like files. I hate unlabeled binders or files.
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