One of my favorite numbers from the musical Chicago is Velma Kelly singing to Roxy Hart, “I Can’t Do It Alone.” Besides being a catchy tune, it’s a fun scene to watch. In life there are certain things we resist doing, and doing them alone is even more difficult; e.g. I’m more motivated to get to the gym when I know I’m meeting a friend. The same can be said about organizing. If your goal is to be more organized, then find a partner with a similar goal and you will both benefit.
Pick The Right Partner – A good partner should keep you focused and on track, which will make the process go much faster. If you work on your own, you’re more likely to mull over each item or quit all together as soon as you make a small amount of progress. Whether you partner with a friend, a colleague, or a professional organizer like More Time For You, you’ll want to be sure you are comfortable with that person. Are you willing to expose the piles on your desk or share how many times you’ve lost an important paper or other valuable item? You want to choose someone you can trust as well as someone who is supportive and will not make you feel judged.
Make An Agreement – If your goal is to organize a small space such as your bedroom closet then getting together with a friend for a few hours on a Saturday may be all you need. However, if you’re trying to tackle a larger job, like your entire office, then you will probably need a more formal agreement. Document the following:
- How often will you meet or talk?
- Will you work together on each other’s project or separately (more of an accountability relationship)?
- What will you accomplish during each session or between sessions?
- Who will be responsible for disposing of or donating items you no longer need or use?
- What you will do to celebrate your success?
Schedule Regular Check-Ins – Working with a partner creates accountability for what you are trying to achieve. Typically when I work with clients on their organizing projects, we meet once a week. Often times I will assign “homework” between sessions. Knowing that I will be returning to see their progress gives my clients a motivation to get it done. You and your partner should schedule a time to check-in on a regular basis whether it is in person, over the phone, or via video chat.
Reward Your Progress – How will you and your partner celebrate once you organize your space; take a trip, share a nice dinner together, or head to the spa for a massage? Whatever you choose, decide ahead of time how you will reward a job well done. It will motivate you to achieve your goal, and give you or your partner ammunition whenever one of you starts to throw in the towel.
A colleague of mine likes to use the phrase, “Together we are better.” Organizing by yourself can seem like drudgery and a task you could easily put off given all the other things you need to do. However, when you have a partner to work with you the project will be more enjoyable and completed more quickly. More Time For You is here to serve as your organizing partner today, tomorrow, or whenever you’re ready start your organization project. There’s no time like today, so what are you waiting for?