Depression and Disorganization

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There are a plethora of different reasons for disorganization: Personality type, upbringing, a busy schedule…other family members! But all of us traverse thru difficult times in our lives, and at those times, we have the tendency to let things go.

For me, hard times bring a swinging pendulum to my organizational style. There have been times that were so tough, and as I looked around my home, I pledged to pitch anything that wasn’t necessary for life itself in order to simplify things–in order to tame the one thing I felt I still had control of. This is my usual response, but I can’t say it’s the norm for the majority.

Then there are other times when I care less about my usual responsibilities, and things fall to the wayside. After a seemingly short time, the mess starts to get out of hand. This is actually a more typical response, and as organizers, we many times find this to be the case.

Obviously, severe depression requires professional attention, but if your life is in disarray due to the hardships typical of the human condition, there are some things you can do to get yourself back on track.

  • Have realistic expectations- many times, an idealistic mindset can sabotage organizing efforts. If it’s not Pinterest worthy, it’s not good, right? Wrong. You have a lot on your plate, and good enough is going to have to be good enough. Your home simply needs to be functional, and this in fact can decrease your stress overall. Get real and toss out your HGTV ideals right now.
  • Set some small goals for yourself- not only do you need realistic expectations regarding your home, but you need to give your mind a break as well.  If times are hard, there’s only so much you can mentally handle. The evening before or the morning of, make a short list of three things that need accomplished that seem doable for you that day. As you tick off those boxes you’ll feel quite accomplished and things will get more orderly every day- life will start to feel possible again.
  • Record what you’ve tackled- similar to the last tip although the opposite, you can instead make a list at the end of the day of what you’ve actually done. You’ll feel great when you see how well you’re actually surviving thru a difficult time and have encouragement for the following day.
  • Enlist a friend or professional organizer- I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: we all have issues, and sometimes we need to recruit help. I have my own trials that I struggle with, and although they may be different from the next person’s, when I can’t handle things on my own, I get help. Plumbers are for pipes, mechanics are for cars, organizers are for messes! At the very least, rope in a friend who has mad tidying skills and make a day of it! Love, after all, is one of the best cures in this world.

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