Woohoo peeps - it's National Punctuation Day! Go on, admit it - you didn't know, did you? Or perhaps you just don't care. That's OK, too. Just consider, though, all those over-used exclamation marks in texting. You know the messages. They make you wonder if the person is yelling at you, super excited about everything, or if a thumb got stuck on the!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The lowly comma is actually very powerful. It can make in the meaning of these two sentences very different:
Let's eat, Grandpa.
Let's eat Grandpa.
I hope Grandpa can outrun his grandkids!
Or did you hear the one about the English professor who wrote the words:
“A woman without her man is nothing”
on the chalkboard and asked the students to punctuate it correctly.
All of the males in the class wrote:
“A woman, without her man, is nothing.”
All of the females in the class wrote:
“A woman: without her, man is nothing.”
Entire books have been written just about punctuation, like the bestselling, "Eats, Shoots and Leaves" by Lynn Truss. The story behind that headline is actually much different than it appears.
So why is a Professional Organizer caring about punctuation? Like I said - punctuation is powerful. Yet it doesn't have to overwhelm us. Need some easy punctuation help? Check out Punctuation Made Simple - a clear and concise guide with no clutter! (Yep - even grammar and punctuation can be clutter free!)
P.S. I happen to love the "tilde" (~) from my days working in Business Card editing at Carlson Craft in Mankato. What's your favorite punctuation, and why?
My friends, the clutter monster we call disorganization comes in many different forms! There is chronic disorganization (CD), situational disorganization (SD), and probably a host of others yet to be defined!
So what, you may ask? Trust me - if you fall into one of these categories you'll want to read this! Not sure if you fit the profile? Check out the quizzes created by the Institute for Challenging Disorganization (FS-001 and FS-002).
CD and SD look very similar on the surface, but have different roots. Let's look at the differences, and what can be done to help.
The Roots of SD
Experiencing major life changes (birth, adoption, death, new job, a move, divorce) - I mean, really - who HASN'T experienced an upheaval - can throw us into a tailspin (remember the Looney Tunes character Taz - that's what it looks like!). This disorganizational tailspin can last anywhere from a few days to years - it's unique to each of us and our situations.
What makes it different from CD is the organizing systems that are in place PRIOR to the life change. The event (situation) happens and tips the scale to where systems aren't maintained, but eventually they are recovered and order is restored. On a side note - remember what I preach about organizing - it's a continuum, not a "Once and For All" event!
The Signs of CD
CD is characterized by 3 things:
What to do?
For those experiencing SD - be kind to yourself! Acknowledge that this is a stressful period, but that the organization you once enjoyed will return - perhaps with a bit of buckling down (when ready, of course), and tweaking to make the system fit life after the transition. Ebb and Flow, people - life ebbs and flows!!!
Sufferers of CD - I encourage you to think outside the box. Please don't try to adopt systems that work for other people. Overcoming CD is all about customizing organization for the way you think and act. At the risk of throwing another self-help book into your library, I do recommend Judith Kolberg's Conquering Chronic Disorganization - she is one of the leaders in the study of Chronic Disorganization and her methods are tried and true.
Of course, hiring a Certified Professional Organizer would quickly get both the SD and CD sufferers on their way to chronic calm - isn't that a lovely thought?!
As Benjamin Franklin once said, "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail." September is National Preparedness Month (Mr. Franklin would be so proud!), and nothing warms the heart of an organizer-at-heart like a solid plan. So whether you live through a Minnesota winter and need an emergency kit in your car or your front yard comes with an ocean view and requires hurricane preparedness, there is no time like the present to start preparing.
National Preparedness Month 2015
A Podcast all About Building a Filing System that Fits Your Life
We all have a consistent need in common - calming the paper chaos that invades our lives. Bills, bank statements, insurance paperwork, appliance manuals, tax papers, and more. I had the privilege of recording a podcast with John at Keeping You Organized, where we talked about all things filing. So if you've ever wondered how to store the papers you need - and how to purge the things you might not need anymore, we talk about it all!
What are you comfortable with letting go?
What works for you?
It could be the most amazing filing system I've ever seen - but if it doesn't work for you - then it really isn't so amazing after all.
welcome to our blog!
Tammy Schotzko is a Certified Professional Organizer who