Tuesday, August 7, 2012


The online counselling college posted an entry on their blog about organized people. Well, the list and advice is not true. I'd say wrong but there is some truth to some of the items on the list but in short, however, they mistake organization for neatness.

They forget seemingly disorganized people can be very organized because they know where everything is and know who to function around what appears to be disorganization, and even to some a mess. I know this because I'm an organized person but I don't have OCD about organization.

That's because I organize by a method I call organized chaos. I don't try to find a specific place for everything but lump common things together and put them in a place. If I want the item, I know where it's at with the other similar items. I don't have to organize it by any method other than it's in a place or box.

Also, I'm a great procrastinator, and why the organized chaos method works for me. I can lump into a group and sort them when I feel I need or want to sort them into a more specific order. I do this with receipts. I organize them by company in time sequence, but during the year I simply put all the receipts in one box and every few months sort box into their respective places.

I don't spend the time every time putting things away. Simply lumping the stuff during the year keeps it simple and I sort it out later. It works for many and many peope who are still organized because they know where everything is, it's just not overly organized, which is what they forget, organization is a relative to the person and their life and work.

Also, I don't work by deadlines unless it's a necessity. Deadlines aren't good or efficient if it puts pressure on the person to worry more about the deadline than the work. It's about doing good work, not meeting a deadline. How many things have come out less than the best because of some arbitrary deadline?

Some people work with deadlines and some don't, but the fact of the deadline doesn't change the quality of the person. It can, however, change the quality of their work if a deadline shortchanges the time they need to do their best. I've always worked with the notion you only impose a deadline when it's required, otherwise, focus on the work and most of the time you'll meet your deadline.

And there is some work which requires ignoring deadline because the work or the situation or circumstances of the work changes but the deadline doesn't. That's where a deadline is not just useless but wrong. I've seen too many managers impose artificial deadline which didn't require it and I've seen less than the best work, sometimes even shoddy work, done to meet the deadline which wasn't necessary.

The rule is if you plan the work with time for problems and changes, then you set reasonable and meetable deadlines, but then adjust them when it's important or necessary. Deadlines aren't brick walls, don't make meeting them like one.

Also, keeping things is or isn't a sign of an organized or disorganized person. It's just a sign of someone who keeps things. We all keep things. It's human nature for many people and what is all too often put in garages or rental storage places. It's not a sign of anything except keeping things. Only when it goes to the extreme that it's a problem.

In the end, this is a bad list for a bad idea, so ignore it and be yourself. It's better than trying to be something someone else says you should be because they think they know better and think you should be better to their standards. It's signs of OCD, but more so, it's cowpasture material.

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