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Similarities I see as a Professional Organizer all the time while working with ADHDers and Clients affected by Chronic Disorganization.

Updated: Jun 5

Sometimes you feel like you are alone in your struggle to get organized. My job entails assisting clients during the process. Knowing you aren't alone in your struggle and normalizing that others struggle in the same way you do, can help you on your organizing journey. I have put together some topics clients I have worked with or are currently working with struggle with.

  1. Everything has equal importance. Whether it be appointments, things that need to get done, or goals you have in your life, if everything is equally important, how do you know where to start? Does a late tax bill have the same importance as paring down your closet? Does your overall health matter more than getting all the towels in one place in the home? Being able to step back together and prioritize what is truly important and set aside time for the things that are urgent versus goals that can be a little further down the list is important.

  2. Tactile preferences-Every person has different needs when it comes to getting organized. Some clients, when they touch an item, they have a higher likelihood of keeping it. If that's you, our strategy would be to base decisions on visual prompts, not on tactile. The same clients may decide, after touching something, that it can be donated because it doesn't work for their tactile needs. It's too course, not the right thickness, texture, doesn't have a good feeling attached to it, etc.

  3. Hyper verses Hypo visual needs- Knowing which way you lean can really help our process together. If you can't see it, does it even exist? If that's you, then there is a higher likelihood that you are hyposensitive to clutter. You need clear organizing strategies and visual prompts (that are organized) so that you remember what you have and where your items are. On the other side of the spectrum, some people are hypersensitive to clutter, and get distressed with things strewn out and about in the home. If that's you, we need it to be organized and stored, for example, behind a cabinet door. We might need fabric bins with labels and your surfaces should stay cleared.

  4. Categories-A lot of clients struggle with the inability to visualize categories. Setting up stations of like-with-like helps you so that you don't have to memorize where everything is in your home helps. It also lets you know what you have, so that you are not buying duplicates or triplicates that may not be necessary.

  5. Wastefulness- A lot of my clients have the best hearts and intentions. When they are paring down, they want to get as many of their items as they can to those in need. If we have items such as food or medicine that is expired, that desire cannot be met. Knowing what you have and where it is helps lower the likelihood of wastefulness. Which is where the previous top of categories & like-with-like comes in. Stopping to "shop your home" and double checking what you have before buying anything new is a way to help combat wastefulness. Understanding this going forward helps you not feel so badly about things you end up needing to throw away today.

  6. Taking your purchased items out of a shopping bag/amazon box. -Some clients after they purchase or bring a delivery into the house, they set it down somewhere to be dealt with later. This leads to a pile of items that might not ever get where they belong. This can also lead to clutter piles and repurchasing items, especially if they stay in the bag or boxes for a long period of time. Taking the time to take it out of the bag or box and put it where you will look for it may save you money, the stress of trying to find something and having to buy it again later because you forgot you already have it.

  7. Overcategorizing-Some clients actually organize things into such small categories throughout the house, that finding it is just as difficult as if they hadn't organized it at all. If you are likely to put everything in a Ziploc bag, and you have them all over the house, it may add additional time and effort to find what you need. Sometimes, have a broader category in the same area can be more helpful than have subcategories of one category. You are now able to grab & go without sifting through all the minutia.

  8. Maintenance-The old saying that "The oven only stays clean if you never use it." applies to organizing as well. Setting aside time to regularly maintain your space(s) is just as important as getting organized in the first place. If you are regularly overwhelmed, setting a timer and an appointment on your calendar to do maintenance regularly, so things don't get completely out of hand again, is a really good way to combat overwhelm. Organizing is not a "one and done" strategy.

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