I really do need to thank my husband for being the inspiration behind this blog post. Even professional organizers live with disorganized people, and despite best efforts, from time to time, thing go awry. Sometimes, the car keys mysteriously disappear. Sometimes, the phone isn't 'where I left it', and let's not even discuss what happened to the remote control. This one, though, takes the cake.
One recent (previous-to-this-lost-and-found episode) delightful Saturday morning, as I sat in front of the window, sipping my first cup of coffee (always the best one of the day) and flipping through a magazine, I could see my husband moving quickly from one room to another. He went downstairs, he went upstairs, he went outside to his truck, he came back inside. He went into the kitchen, into the bedroom, into the family room, into every room. He went downstairs, he went upstairs, he went outside to his truck, he came back inside - you get the idea. I sat as a silent witness. Clearly he was looking for something. I continued to sip and read and witness. His pace was getting more and more frantic, and I held myself in check, determined not to get sucked into the frenzy of the hunt. I'd seen this scene before, and just couldn't muster the energy to get involved. I was sipping and reading, after all.
There was something different about this, though. All of the commonly 'misplaced' items - keys, wallet, phone - were present and accounted for. What the heck was he looking for? Then came the desperate confession: "I can't find my paycheck". WHAT?!?!?!? Time to abandon the sipping and reading and silent witnessing. Time to join the search and rescue team, and call upon my right-hand man in such circumstances, St. Anthony. As usual, he heard me and responded quickly to the call. Paycheck found, problem solved.
As you might imagine, I reserve my ace-in-the-hole call to St. Anthony for only the most intense situations, and not as an everyday tool stored in my professional organizing tool box. Since there is a place for everything, and everything is in it's place, and habits have been formed and systems designed to find what you need when you need it, how could this have happened? Well, lest you think professional organizers and all those around them live clutter free, highly efficient lives, take heart. Sometimes the best laid plans, systems and habits get interrupted. When that happens you pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.
Things don't organize themselves and stay organized themselves. Keeping up with the good habits formed and following the established system takes some effort. It's not a once and forget it type of thing. Getting organizing and staying organized everyday is a process to be attended to over a lifetime.
And that goes for what you do with your paycheck every week, too.