The Fox acquired some kind of book on extreme cleaning, which advises readers to throw away any material possessions that do not inspire joy, something along those lines. Amongst my many possessions are numerous items that most likely do not inspire joy in me, but letting go of them can be complicated as well. For example, I have a drawer in my office that contains nothing but letters people wrote to me in high school and college. I have another draw that houses every notebook I used in school during that same time period. Do these things inspire joy in me? Do I really need to save them?
Probably not. But maybe. What if I want them later? And even if I did toss them, first I would have to go through every single one of them to ascertain their particular contents and meaning.
It’s easier to keep them in drawers.
After many days of ignoring the problem, I finally got it together to knock my work space back into some semblance of order. It’s not perfect–there are still many things (besides the old letter and notebooks that need to be sorted–but at least it feels like an office again, and not like a precursor to an episode of Hoarders.
This layout never occurred to me in the past because I wouldn’t have my back to the window. Originally, I was going to try turning the desk the other way and pushing it up to the window, but now that I have nice curtails I can pretend the window is a wall, if need be. Plus from this vantage point, i can fully experience the joy of living in a library.
While I was putting some things on the high shelf and noted that, by the Fox’s book’s measure, I could easily part with probably 60 or 75% of my books. Individually, I no longer have an emotional connection to many of them. However, the concept of having a library does bring me joy. As long as the books are organized, they’re not any kind of burden.
By the time this is published, I’ll be at camp with the Rabbit, who is much more vested in keeping a clean house than I am. However, we can both agree that it will be lovely to come home and have this space so beautifully cleaned and laid out. There’s an excellent possibility that the rest of the house will be in worse condition than when I left, but my small oasis of creative peace should theoretically remain.
question for you: how did you start. I’ve been meaning to clan/reorganise my work space for a while and I keep hitting brick walls
Hmm…sometimes I pick a corner and start there. Sometimes I just pick up the first thing that comes my hand and then put it away and then the next and the next. The main thing was just throwing out all the trash and putting things away. I’m a basically organized person who sometimes lets stuff get away from me, so it’s not like I have a problem putting things in their place. As you can see in the pix, I have 14 little drawers I got from Target on the floor under the shelves, plus my desk, plus another set of tiny drawers, plus all those shelves, plus a bunch of milk crates, plus 3 Ikea Lack tables, so the entire perimeter of the room features storage spaces, not even counting the shelves.
If you’re really losing your mind over this, there are books (and there are even organizational professionals who can help!) but I think I would pick one thing. Like: just organize your colored pencils or something. Then, when you’re happy with that, pick another thing to organize. My big problem is keeping the crap from piling up on the floor. I always seem to be surrounded by scrap paper, and lately I write all my scripts on the back of junk mail envelopes, so I have to go through carefully and make sure I’m not actually tossing a comic I haven’t drawn yet.