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  • Writer's pictureWendy Elizabeth

Confessions of a Messy Office

Sometimes, I write a blog, and never publish it. I read it, and it sounds boring, or too personal, or too big, or too much like a decorating lesson. That’s what happened this week; I wrote two, and I liked them, but they just didn’t feel right. It was a Goldilocks moment.

I’m not silly, I knew why nothing was working; it was because my office was a diabolical mess. Motivated by the conference that I attended a couple of weeks ago, I had decided to reorganize. What began as a simple clean out, turned into this avalanche of ideas scribbled on bits of paper (lots of them, that I didn’t even know I had) countless pages torn from magazines, files that no longer made sense, two old keyboards, a small television that I had forgotten about in the closet (don’t ask – the box isn’t even opened) and a pile of cardboard airplanes from when my daughter was in pre-school.

Impatient to get going, I did the classic mistake of trying to do it all at once. And, I got distracted. Opening a drawer revealed a pile of decorating goodies that I didn’t even know I had, and more notebooks than I could count (well, there were nine actually). They are very pretty, but I tend to use the same, spiral-bound 79 cent notebook for most things; I like it’s size, the space of the lines, and the ease of turning over the pages. In this case, function trumps beauty, and I know the pretty notebooks would be happier living somewhere else.

It’s been a few days since I started, and I am finally seeing my serene, creative office space again. I realize it is a little bit like the cobbler’s children having no shoes (do children even know what cobbler’s are anymore?); I am great at organizing (really) and know what I should be doing, but when life gets busy, my office is usually the first place to suffer. I tell myself I can work around it, but I really can’t; I juggle for space on my desk, and my thoughts become as scattered as coffee cups.

This happens to us all at some time or another; it feels okay for a while, then you turn around, and you wonder what the heck happened. You swear it happened overnight, but it didn’t, you just forgot to notice. When this happens, which is normal by the way, here is my strategy for coping…..

– I panic. – Close the door, go downstairs and make a cup of tea. – Sit in the sunroom, drink tea and look at the trees. – Make a list of absolutely everything I need (and want) to do. – Give myself a realistic, generous, time limit. – Turn on some really loud music. – Grab a couple of garbage bags, and a box for miscellaneous things. – Put on comfy, old clothes and bare feet. – Begin. – Add more music and tea as needed. – Stop when I am done.

It’s not complicated really, just feels like it for a moment…. p.s. The photograph above is one of the inspiration boards in my office.

For more by Wendy and the Blue Giraffe, go to:

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