In my opinion, there is no virtue to “being organized.” I don’t think of being organized itself as something to become. I think of it more as a practice: something I do. And if practiced consistently, being organized becomes second nature.
I have a habit of picking up our small house every morning. I call this my sweep. I follow the same path every day from upstairs to down. Raising shades, putting away the last few dishes left out, tidying up. I don’t really give it much thought. It’s gone beyond routine and become a habit. That’s good, right?
However, there are times when I choose not to put things away. When “being organized” feels like it might literally be a waste of time. There are jobs I have worked on where the best thing to do was to leave the tools where they lay at the end of the day. And that’s right where they will be when you need them to start again tomorrow. There are many ways to practice organization, after all.
David Allen, author of Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress Free Productivity, says, “The creative process is messy.” In the midst of creating, tools get used, books pulled off the shelf, scraps of leftover material appear. Things get worse before they look better or the project is complete. The creative process is messy indeed.
To me this means that the benefit of being organized, then, isn’t even about the practice of organization, itself. It is about what that practice then allows to happen. The practice of being organized creates a structure. It creates space. Space in our calendars, space in our lives, time and space for things to happen. How we choose to fill the space– that’s the rich stuff right there. That’s where the magic happens. There are so many possibilities.
In our house, our practice of being organized is how we have time to do what we love. That’s how music is made, videos get taped, and articles are written. That’s the space in our world where friends and family gather. Food is cooked. Fun is had. It is why organization is something we practice.