Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Time Management Tuesday: Minimalizing Instead Of Organizing

"No matter how organized we are, we must continue to care for the stuff we organize, sorting and cleaning our meticulously structured belongings."

You'll find that line in  A New Memoir About What Happens When You Get Rid of All Your Stuff , an excerpt from Everything That Remains by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus that appears in Slate. The point Millburn and Nicodemus are making is that so long as you keep the stuff, you have to continue to take care of it.

Taking care of stuff takes time.

Dealing with life's stuff may seem beyond the focus of this blog series, which is time management for writers. But, remember, "the boundary between professional and personal time is very thin and very wobbly," particularly for writers who often work without workstations outside the home and function as their own supervisors. The less we have to deal with in our personal lives, the more we'll have to give to our professional lives.

Millburn and Nicodemus say that organizers accumulate things, they just think they have control of the situation because they're organized. But organize is a verb. It's something you have to do. Minimalizing, simplifying, not having a lot of possessions to handle may be the more time and energy efficient way to go.

You can minimalize your work world, too. I tossed some writing books a month or two ago. And then there was the file purge I did a couple of years ago.

Of course, minimalizing takes time, too. But once things are gone, they're gone. Keeping them organized, on the other hand, goes on forever.

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