The sad truth is that there was no natural disaster or crime committed. I'm just a slob.
According to local professional organizer Stephanie Denton, I'm not alone. Denton has been working with folks to clean up their acts for 14 years. She helps people develop organizational schemes for home and business environments and says that her business is really about helping people empower themselves and realize that organization is about making better choices.
"One thing that I emphasize is that organization is about how you spend your time, which is what it comes down to," Denton says.
You can choose your schedule, though many of the people she works with feel that their work and their disorganized lives are constrained by their responsibilities.
"Sometimes people are very reactive rather than proactive," Denton says
"I spend a fair amount of time in discussion with a client about who they are and what's most important to them or their business," she says.
There are some basic steps toward becoming effective and efficient. The task of organizing is both mental and physical.
· Set goals. Determine what's important to you and prioritize.
· Get the tools to manage your schedule. A calendar works for some people, and others are more comfortable with a computer.
· Develop a contact list of phone numbers to keep on hand.
· Keep an inbox for new papers that need to be processed.
· Develop a filing system for long-term use.
More than anything else, it's important to stick to your system.
"I always tell people that maintaining the system is more important than designing it," Denton says.
Plan for a weekly clean up, and you'll be on the road to office recovery.
CONTACT STEPHEN CARTER-NOVOTNI: firstname.lastname@example.org