As a professional organizer, one of the questions I get asked the most is, "Is YOUR house completely organized?" My traditional answer is, "Mostly - but I do have a husband!"
The one area we struggle to keep organized in our home is the dining room table. The hubs (one of the many nicknames I give to my husband) uses the table as his personal desk, so most of the time our dining room table looks like this:
As you can imagine, this drives me crazy. Any time we have dinner together or have people over, he makes several trips to the bedroom, carrying everything to our bedspread and then putting everything back on the table later. Once in a blue moon, he actually spends some time putting the paper away - but not without a lot of frustration and complaining!
Over the eight years of our marriage, I have occasionally worked with the hubs to try and find a better solution. But my efforts were a bit too passive, and nothing really stuck.
Recently, I was on a clean-up jag throughout the house and decided it was time to try a new approach. I know that my husband has successfully used a product called "PileSmart" for several years in his classroom (he's a science teacher), so I decided to purchase a second version of the product to keep at home.
The Pendaflex PileSmart Project Sorter has ten tabbed dividers and looks a bit like an accordion file turned sideways. It is used to keep paperwork organized without having to "put it away". In this way, paperwork can be "kept out" but still looks "put away".
All the hubs had to do was think of the various categories that defined his paperwork. A few examples he came up with were:
- Bills to pay on the 1st of the month
- Bills to pay on the 15th of the month
- Bills to file downstairs in the file cabinet
- Science articles to take to school
Did this project, which took ten minutes to complete, really need to take eight years? Yes and no. I am a firm believer that all things happen at the correct time. We both had to be in the right frame of mind to embrace change. But by being in that right frame of mind, the change was easy and fun! And, judging from the past 3 weeks - a tremendous success!
I would love to hear from you - what organizing change are YOU waiting for the right time to try out?
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