The Connection between Organisation & Gratitude

So this might be a personal question? But how do you organise your – well, your clothes? We have an old Victorian home and there is minimal storage. In my bedroom there is no built in cupboard so we are currently ‘making do’ with a few dressers and a very old wardrobe. Recently I have added a hanging rack to accommodate the larger items I have like coats, jackets and long dresses.

But I am determined there must be a better way. Could it be I have too many clothes? Too many shoes? Where do you place all of those less used items like accessories and seasonal active gear that need a home but not one that is in high rotation, so access is not necessarily a priority?

Early in the year I read Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. And for a few special moments it did change my outlook. I rearranged my clothes, my personal things and it helped a lot to remove the clutter. But I did not go all the way. Kondo argues that we should only keep that which we love……and here is the problem for me. I have mounds of things for a rainy day. An item if clothing in several sizes, old beautiful leather boots kept just in case one of my girls grows into them.

People who have adopted this KonMarie Method claim it has transformed their life. Stuff does have a way of compounding the negative. There have been many season in my life when I have felt trapped by material things – when I am busy with a newborn I have felt overwhelmed by clutter because I had not the time or energy for a major spring clean. And then I recall a time living overseas when we took with us just a sample of treasured things and lived lightly for over a year. It was thrilling.

So why then do I struggle today with organising my clothes and thinking about stuff and its hold on me. If it were just me I could possibly live a radically different minimalist life. But there are 7mouths2feed here in my home, that is seven people to help organise. Imagine the number of pairs of shoes we have…..I try not to. I think I need a radically different approach to organisation that allows me to feel lighter and brighter and to train those I love how to care for their things. Perhaps the start is gratitude for abundant material blessings. Maybe that will make parting with the excess of stuff easier.

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All I want for Christmas….

Really I don’t need anything for Christmas. My focus should be on others. I should be buying a goat from TEAR and helping a village to have access to clean water. I should be more thoughtful about my Christmas shopping. But a big feature of life right now is that I am not as organised as I would like to be and this is a difficult thing to admit.

Poor organisation inevitably leads to spending above the budget, wasting time and energy searching for missing objects, presents (yes, where did I hide that?) and important invoices and documents. It means I am always running and not making time for refreshment – quiet reflection, prayer and meditation. I don’t have the headspace to really see what needs to be done and what the best way to do it might be.

So I have decided I want “organisation” this Christmas. It is not so much a gift to me but a commitment from me to do the ‘first things first’, identify what is important, schedule in time for the valuable stuff….yes it may mean buying or making some gorgeous new planner/stationary. ( The Project Girl) was a favourite last year!) However, this gift stands to benefit us all. My kids will be better cared for, my home cleaner and tidier perhaps, the food on my table more thoughtful, the time with me Man more meaningful, the connection with friends more regular, my spending more manageable and my giving more generous.

We don’t need stuff. Here in the Western world we rarely lack for the material things. But we need time, love and encouragement. We need Faith in the one who created us.We have been blessed with some amazing people. Cherish them. Love them. Pray for them.

How do you organise your life?