This is very distinct from productivity although they usually go hand in hand. Being productive is one thing but being organized serves to make the productivity more efficient, but more importantly it provides order and a sense of control which is essential to a mind’s happiness in the long run.

So much of what we do revolves around getting many things done quickly and correctly. Sure, doing more of that makes you productive, but being organized is different than that because you can easily be productive without being organized. It just won’t be sustainable as things fall through the cracks. Often others who organized help those who are very productive until at some point hopefully they figure this stuff out. A major privilege not all have.

Tidying Up

Marie Kondo’s system for tidying up really is magic in it’s simplicity.

She excellently uses pauses, taking deep breaths, and kindness towards both material items and the feelings/memories around them.

Her system revolves around keeping things which bring you joy. She expresses this feeling by showing a mixture of surprise and happiness.

She begins the exercise by thanking the house which I believe she really finds enjoyment in but also functions to help her clients identify in their mind a “significant moment” which is the beginning of their changes. The Brain happens to be very receptive to these kinds of events which signal disruption of the usual and open us up to creating new habits and normals. It also forms a foundation for being thankful for our material things by leading by example.

She begins with asking a person to place all their clothes in a single pile for that person to go though all the items in that pile. Their goal is to sort through and find all the items which bring them joy and which they will keep. The others, while they may have been useful before, are thanked and placed to be removed from your life.

This continues though books, the kitchen, bathrooms, closets.

A key of starting with clothes is that you build up the muscles for dealing with the more and more difficult items to determine joy from. Clothes are daily. They have a fit. It’s much easier to determine joy as well as to know when the joy is over for this item.

This is important so that when the sentimental items are dealt with at the end you can be more confident in your choices of what matters to you and your joy.

Digital Tools

  • dokuwiki
  • gollum
  • mediawiki
  • orgmode
  • vimwiki
  • tiddlywiki
  • todo.txt
  • trunknotes
  • working copy (iOS)