Today I want to talk with you about time. We all know that most people waste some time every day (an estimated 2 hours), watching TV, browsing the internet, interacting with people on social media, etc.
Now, there is nothing wrong with the above mentioned activities.
The sad thing is that many people spend time:
- watching TV shows they don’t actually like,
- reading internet articles they truly have no strong interest in, and
- interacting with people who do not enrich their lives.
Anyway, today I don’t want to focus on how people waste their time with their electronics (we can talk about that another day), but about how they waste time and they don’t even notice, because they think that it is normal to take a long time to do simple things.
A Rule for Which I Have Found NO Exceptions
They say that every rule has an exception, but here is a rule for which I have yet to find the exception:
When people say they don’t do something because of time, it is not a time problem. It is a clutter problem.
Every single time, every single case, when a person says they need more time to do the things they want to do, what they really need is organization.
For example, in my home, if you need a pen, you’ll be able to find one in under 30 seconds. In many homes, it takes a few to several minutes.
I Swear I Am Not Making this Up
I have known people where the process of finding a pen went like this (I am not making this up):
- A person in the home is writing something on a piece of paper, and all of a sudden, the pen stops working.
- The person puts the pen down on their desk and opens the top desk drawer.
- They extract a few pens from the drawer, but sadly none works.
- They walk around the home lifting piles of paper on the dining room table and on the kitchen counter.
- If they find a pen, it does not work.
- They decide to go to the convenience store to get a pen.
- The convenience store has only one type of pen, which doesn’t work very well, so they decide to drive to the office supply store 20 minutes away.
- At the office supply store, they buy a number of things that earlier that day they did not have a notion that they were needing or lacking.
- When they get back home, they open the pack of pens they just bought and throw them inside the top desk drawer, with all the useless pens.
- The other items purchased are still inside the bag from the store, and get thrown on a sofa.
- The original pen they had been using never gets put in a trash can.
- The original task that required a pen, lies forgotten on the desk, while the person goes on to do something else.
The whole process may take a full hour.
Compare those 30 seconds that it should take to find a pen, to a full hour.
Losing a Few Minutes Here and There
The above is an extreme example, but people who keep a lot of clutter take about 4 to 6 times to find any object they are looking for, compared to the people in an organized home.
So if I take 30 seconds to find a pen (my husband thinks this is outrageous, because he takes 10 seconds in his office) and you take 6 times that, it would mean that you took 3 minutes to find a pen.
If every simple task takes you longer than it should, there is a cumulative effect and by the end of the day you will have wasted a lot of time looking for things, instead of doing the things you needed to do.
If you decide to pay the water bill, but it takes you 5 minutes to find it, you have lost 4 minutes and 30 seconds. If then you do not remember how to get to the water service website, you will lose a few to several minutes more. If then you don’t remember your password, and have to do a password reset, you have lost another few to several minutes. You will end up spending 15 to 20 minutes on a task that should have taken no more than 5 minutes total.
If you decide to go for a bike ride, but cannot find your helmet — well, you get the idea.
All Have Found More Time After They Learned to Manage Clutter
Every single client who has originally told me that their problem was lack of time (to do the things they loved to do), had a lot of clutter.
Every single client who followed my advice and decluttered and organized their home or office spaces, later on found out that they had plenty of time to do what they wanted to do.
Every. Single. Time.
The are 2 morals to this article:
1 – A poor memory is often the source of clutter, and clutter worsens memory problems. Feng Shui organization can actually help you remember where you put things, because it helps you organize according to your memory type.
2 – If you feel you are lacking time to do the things you love, you cannot afford not to take a few minutes NOW to register:
There is no excuse for clutter. Learn how to manage your clutter:
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