Why I Don’t (Want to) Live in a Perfectly Organized Home

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This picture of a disorganized attic wasn’t taken at a client’s home. This is my attic. I’m not necessarily proud of it, but I think it’s important that you see it. Although my home is definitely well above average as far as organization goes, it still has problem areas, and this is one of them. Although you might think the home of an organizer would be nearly perfect most of the time, the reality is that it isn’t. And I am ok with that.

Sometimes we put so much pressure on ourselves to live up to a certain standard. We browse on Pinterest or thumb through a home magazine and see pictures of beautiful, perfect houses with everything in its place. We desperately want that! We try to figure out how we can achieve it. We think that if only we could finally get our house organized, life would be calm, and we would be at peace. We wouldn’t run around like the proverbial chicken, frantically arranging our belongings and our plans so that we can deal with the crisis of the day. But try as we might, the goal remains elusive, just out of our grasp. And we feel like a failure.

I interact with other organizers daily on email groups and Facebook pages. Recently one of these groups has been discussing the reality of our own homes. Organizers across the country are making statements such as, “I sure hope a client doesn’t drive by when my garage door is open!” or “If my clients saw my home, they wouldn’t hire me!” It’s been liberating to admit that even as specialists in organization, we still struggle. I love that about these groups! My comment on that thread was that I think it’s important for our clients to know that we can relate to them, that we are real people with busy lives and our homes reflect it.

I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that even though my house can sometimes get in disarray, I know how to recover. I have high standards for my home and my life, but I am also realistic. I don’t let my desire to keep things ordered keep me from enjoying life. And neither should you! The homes you see on Pinterest and in the magazines are wonderful, and we can use those pictures for organizing ideas. But never lose sight of the fact that a model home is just that – a model. Our homes show signs of being lived in. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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