Please Stop Apologizing for Your Mess
What a professional organizer and coach wants you to know.
After decades of coaching and helping people organize their homes and businesses, their paper piles, calendars, appointments, communications, and the bazillion other things adults cope with, there is something I want you to know.
I don’t care how your closets look, how deep the paper piles are on your desk, or if your employee files are not in perfect alphabetical order.
You don’t need to apologize. In fact, I prefer you don’t.
I don’t think less of you for having disorganized spaces.
When you apologize, it puts me in the position to assure you of what you don’t believe: that I think you are inadequate.
What I care about is you.
I care about improving how you function to increase your credibility with yourself and the others in your life.
I care that you miss out on opportunities because you can’t find a paper or your keys.
I care that you’re not considered for the job you want because people think your desktop piles mean you aren’t productive.
I don’t care that your shoes are in a heap by the door, unless it bothers you.
So what if your house doesn’t look like the Container Store.
Can you find clean clothes in the morning? Does your fridge contain safe, interesting food? Are you on time, solvent, content, and healthy?
There are things you do well and things you don’t do so well.
My goal is to help you get comfortable with those differences (coaching) and find ways to accomplish what you aren’t so great at doing (organizing).
Sometimes that means allowing more helpers in your life. That’s not a failure.
It’s a strength to ask for and accept help.
In fact, we laud people who have ‘staff’ as successful and admirable. Yet people judge others as lazy when they have help with their personal tasks, like laundry, bookkeeping, house cleaning, cooking, and pet care.
You have the same right as anyone to find ways to fix what brings you a better life, whatever that means to you.
A mechanic’s role is to change your oil.
An accountant’s role is to help you make good financial decisions.
A coach’s role is to nudge you to the place you feel accomplished, proud of your efforts, and able to focus on what matters to you.
An organizer’s role is to offer tips, methods, and ideas to simplify and organize your time, space, information, and tasks that take up too much of your precious time — organization and efficiency as a means to an end, not the end in themselves.
This is not a sales pitch.
It’s what friends, family, and other support folks do for each other.
So please, believe me.
I know you are not your shoe pile, your overfull cabinets, or your too full calendar.
It’s time you believe that too.