STYLE Savvy: Getting to Easy Upkeep

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"STYLE Savvy" by Lisa Hess (CatholicMom.com)

Copyright 2018 Lisa Hess. All rights reserved.

Of all the things I’ve said about Organizing by STYLE, the one I say most often is that it’s a process. Guided by the STYLE acronym, we move slowly from figuring out what we do well to figuring out where our treasures belong and removing the items that don’t serve us anymore to arrive at Easy upkeep, like so:

Start with successes gets us off on the right foot, reminding us that, even when things seem cluttered and overwhelming, there are things we are doing right that can serve as building blocks for our organizational systems.

Take small steps reminds us that we don’t have to do it all at once. Each step takes us closer to the goal of being organized enough to find what we need when we need it.

Yes, it has a home reminds us that when our things have homes, it’s easier to put them away, which keeps things neater.

Let it go can be a challenge, particularly to those with an I love stuff personal style, but becomes less intimidating when we consider that letting things go doesn’t have to mean throwing them away.

Easy upkeep is when we know we’ve arrived. Although we may not arrive at this step in every area at the same time, we know we’ve reached Easy upkeep when our systems feel almost effortless because they are working with our styles, not against them. We may not be perfectly organized or completely clutter-free, but we’re managing our stuff instead of letting it manage us.

If the thing I talk about most often is how this is a process, the thing I talk about least often is probably Easy Upkeep. Once we’ve journeyed to this wonderful peak of organization, how do we set up camp there?

Here are a few ideas.

  • Value the clear space. Resist the urge to drop and run or put anything in newly cleared space! You worked hard to create this oasis of neatness, so you should enjoy the accomplishment.
  • Put your systems to work. If you’ve set things up based on your styles, Easy upkeep should be a snap. And, even if the setup isn’t perfect, it should work well enough that a few tweaks can take it from good to even better, so…
  • Adjust where necessary. A little trial and error can be a necessary part of establishing a system that works. When you’ve got a strengths-based foundation, trouble-shooting is easier because you can actually put your ideas to the test. Every time you adapt an existing system, it gets better and it informs future organizing as well.

Organizing by STYLE doesn’t guarantee a spotless or clutter-free home, 100% of the time, but creating systems based on your styles enables us to have a plan of attack when life happens and clutter resurfaces.

And that is Easy upkeep.


Copyright 2018 Lisa Hess

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About Author

Lisa Lawmaster Hess has contributed articles to local, national and online publications, and blogs at The Porch Swing Chronicles, The Susquehanna Writers and here at Catholicmom.com. She is the author of two non-fiction books (Acting Assertively and Diverse Divorce) and two novels, Casting the First Stone and Chasing a Second Chance. A retired elementary school counselor, Lisa is a lecturer in psychology at York College and enjoys singing with the contemporary choir at her church.

2 Comments

  1. Ellen Mongan on

    Always wise and wonderful! You make organization seems so easy that anyone can do it !

    • Aww, thank you, Ellen! That’s so good to hear – I love knowing that I maybe made things a little easier. Thank you for taking the time to comment 🙂

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