No two people are the same when it comes to organizing your life. Some people need a clean, organized and sanitary life style to be happy while others may be their happiest in a well lived in and somewhat cluttered environment. I don’t think it matters how straight the books are on the shelve, rather what environment best meets your desired lifestyle. It is about finding a place where your creativity happens and where you find the most peace and joy.
I have one good friend who is an attorney in California. Away from his office you have never seen a more organized and well put together man. He always has on the best suit and every hair is in place and when he is meeting with investors or clients he is a perfectionist. I went to his office one day expecting to find his office clean, straight and orderly. I walked into the door and had to ask if I was in the correct office. Every flat surface had stacks upon stacks of paper running in all directions and sitting haphazardly. There were old coffee stains on many of the files and the actual place he did his writing was covered in 6 layers of old files and various court documents. I truly don’t know how he found anything but he was sitting behind his desk just as happy as pig in the sunshine.
My point is everyone needs to find their own balance and their own method of living that makes them happy.
There is a story about Abraham Lincoln that fits well with what I am saying. He was a very detailed oriented man. Almost obsessively so. There is a story told about him that happened early in his presidency where in those days people could just walk up to the white house and wait to see the president. There were always a long line of people waiting to see him. Can you imagine that? Well, the story goes that he was in his office working on a project when his assistant brought in the next person to see him. The assistant had the man go ahead and take a seat in the president’s office. The story is the President Lincoln didn’t acknowledged the man until he was complete with the project he was working on. He never looked up and never said “I will be with you shortly.” He was totally focused on the project he was working on. After what was a long uncomfortable period of quietness while he signed the documents he was working on and put them away, did he look up and acknowledge the man in his office. That is an example of the focus of Abraham Lincoln. He was methodical, intense, quiet, brilliant, organized and very deliberate in his actions.
Everyone had their own system of keep up with things and it is not a one size fits all. I have worked with some people with great minds that are the most unorganized people I know. The truth is that they excel in the clutter. I have worked with other people that have a file for everything and everything in its file. One person I used to work with had a vacuum cleaner and wood polish in his office. Every day he would shine his desk and vacuum the office floor. The funny thing is I have seen both organized and unorganized people succeed and fail. How you organize your life has very little to do your success.
I think it is about finding the balance that works for you. I read a lot and there are some people that like to read several books at the same time and will go from one to the other. They will read one for a while and set it aside and read a while in the other books. This approach would not work for me, but to them, it is how they like it.
There are very few things in life where there are absolutes. It can be education, health, diet, work, exercise, parenting, marriage and the list could go on for pages. Some people think they have the perfect system and get angry when everyone else doesn’t agree with them. My advice is to find the way you want to live and then enjoy it. KT