An Organized Woman Helps Create a Life that Works
by Lane Jordan
I believe that one of the hardest parts about being a woman today is that she has so many options.
My mother made the decision to stay at home because for one, Daddy had the only car and secondly, that’s just what women did.
Today, we have the option to work full time, letting someone else take care of the children, or we can stay home and raise them ourselves. But, of course, women who stay home feel guilty that they aren’t helping enough with the finances. And women, married or single, working full time may feel guilty when they are not at home raising their children.
Guilt begins. Stress increases. Lives start to feel unraveled.
The truth is: whether we work outside or inside the home, the same chores still have to be accomplished: laundry, shopping, errands, doctor appointments, cooking, driving, packing lunches, volunteering, exercising, keeping up relationships, etc.
If women aren’t organized, they will feel overwhelmed, stressed out and will eventually burn out.
So, you may ask, what is the secret to getting organized in this busy and chaotic life? I believe the key is in a four letter word: Plan. When we plan the different areas of our life and organize our time, life starts to work better!
- Make a point to sit down with paper, pen and your calendar and take stock of all your commitments.
- Write down these commitments for each day of the week.
- Then pray. Ask the Lord to open your eyes to what you need to eliminate from your life and what you need to keep. Most women (including myself) have an “I can do it all” mentality. But does God want us living like that? He wants us to do His Will, not ours. Concentrate on a few great things and eliminate a bunch of good things. Good is the enemy of Best.
“For God is not a God of disorder but of peace.” I Corinthians 14:33
- Next, take a walking tour of your home with pad and pen in hand. Literally start at the front door as if you are a guest walking in your home and survey the foyer. Ask yourself three questions: 1. Does the area need cleaning? 2. Does the area need organizing? 3. Does the area need decorating?
In other words, are there handprints around the door handle or base boards that need cleaning? Is there clutter or boxes in corners that need to be cleared out and moved away? If there is a hall closet, does it need to be cleared out and organized? Would the area look better with a fresh coat of paint or a new table and/or lamp?
- Now, continue walking through the rest of your home and ask these three questions for each area. Don’t get stressed with questions like how will I ever be able to get any of this done! Just make your list.
- When you have toured the whole house, look back over your list and circle or highlight the area that is giving you the most stress. This is your starting point! Look at your calendar and find some time when you, or your family, could tackle it. If it’s just cleaning and organizing, you may just need good ol’ elbow grease. If you feel an area needs paint and/or redecorating, then you will need to look at your budget and work out a way to get it done.
Another tip that might help this process move faster is to remember that there are also three ways to organize quickly:
- Use hooks – as in closets and the back of doors or cup hooks in the kitchen.
- Use shelves – for every area you want to put items in their own place as books, toys, hobby items, electronics, etc.
- Use storage bins – for everything you want organized from children’s papers and school items to holiday decorations, bathroom toiletries, sport equipment, sewing items, food storage, etc.
Remember that you can’t do it all on your own. That’s why God has given us family and friends to help us. If budget allows, you may even consider hiring professionals to help with certain tasks. Your peace of mind is worth every penny.
Also, be realistic and give yourself grace. If you have just had a baby, an illness, a recent move or a loss of your husband or family member, you may be in a situation where you are just existing. In times like these and I have been there, just concentrate on what you can do. One day that season will end and you will be able to get organized.
If your home is so full of clutter that you really don’t know where to start, I suggest you start with just one drawer. Take everything out, and then as you put the items back in, you can throw away or give away anything you don’t need or want anymore. And I promise you will feel motivated to keep clearing out more once you start. Sometimes 50% of getting a task done is just starting it.
I realize that organization isn’t the most important thing in life, but with organization you will have more time and energy to focus on the things that are. My hope and prayer is that we can become women who know how to put correct order to all things in life—even things as small as a kitchen drawer.
Lane Jordan is a bestselling author, international speaker and seminar leader for Christian organizations, a certified professional life coach with AACC and has served as Associate Producer for the weekly television program In Touch with Dr. Charles Stanley, wife, mother and grandmother!
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