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Organize + Energize: Are You a Procrastinator?

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


PHOTO: Marke1996/flickr

You keep pushing a project further and further out on your calendar. Do you know this causes mental clutter, because you’re constantly reminded that you need to tackle it? It’s always going to be in the back of your mind until you complete it. What are your excuses for not tackling it now? Write them down, take a look at them and talk through what’s holding you back. 

Here are 5 reasons you procrastinate:

There is too much emotion.  There may be a reason you have pushed this project aside. It may involve going through sentimental items that will stir emotions. You may be going through deceased relative’s belongings, childhood memories, or items that trigger bad memories, etc. As you declutter, try to disconnect and just focus on what you are keeping or tossing. Once you get through that process, then you can set aside some time to reminisce on the items you are keeping. Try to distance yourself from reminiscing and just focus on decluttering. There will be time for reminiscing later, but now, you have a project to tackle.  

Time management. This will only be a daunting task if you allow it to be. Your projects aren’t going to take you months. If you start now, you could have your entire home organized in less than 3 months! Don’t let a 3 hour project turn into an all-day affair. Unless you are a hoarder dealing with exorbitant amounts of clutter, your organizing projects shouldn’t take you very long. The average project will take about 3 hours depending on the amount of clutter. If you must, break the project up into several days. The first day you can declutter, the next day categorize and itemize and the next work on creating your organized systems. By breaking the process down, you can easily wrap your head around the project.

Can’t focus. You procrastinate because you know you’re going to shut down an hour into your project.  Once you decide to tackle a project, you must limit your distractions and stay focused. Set a time limit for your project. Stay in the room you are working in. Turn off the TV. Don’t answer your phone or check your email. Basically, let the room you are working in hold you hostage for the next 3 hours. 

Skill set hasn’t been developed. Are you worried that if you start to tackle this, you won’t finish because you don’t have the skill set? You may continually walk around in circles during your project. You just can’t wrap your head around how to create a working organized system. This is when it’s time to bring in a professional. Stop wasting precious time and make the call. They will transfer their skill set to you and will teach you how to tackle more projects in the future. 

Lack of motivation. Call it lack of motivation or laziness. You’d rather be doing anything else than organizing your kitchen. You’ll spend an hour on Facebook, but just can’t seem to spend an hour tackling a closet. Is it because all of the factors above come into play? Think about why you aren’t motivated and once you recognize which factor it is, then you can make some changes and make a plan to tackle your project. 

You may find if you tackle this project when you work at your best, you may be more motivated. Think about what’s holding you back and then make a solid plan to get it done. Think about how you are going to feel once it’s completed. We feel more stress when things are hanging over our head. Complete your project and you’ll feel like a weight has been lifted. You will be asking yourself why you didn’t tackle it sooner.


Kristin Carcieri-MacRae, is an organizing & efficiency expert and owner of Organizing in RI. Kristin teaches her clients that living an organized lifestyle will save them time and money, decrease their stress levels and help them become more efficient and productive. Her articles have been published in local and national magazines. Kristin's CD, Organizing Basics, is a 1-hour guide for the person who wants to get organized but doesn't know where to begin. She is also available for organizing workshops.


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Kristin MacRae

Kristin Carcieri-MacRae, the founder and owner of Organizing in RI, has always enjoyed finding creative ways to streamline the environment around her. She has appeared on air on Patricia Raskin's Positive Business Radio and her articles have been published in the Rhode Island Small Business Journal and New England Home Life. Kristin's CD, Organizing Basics, is a 1-hour guide for the person who wants to get organized but doesn't know where to start. She is also available for organizing workshops. Tune into her weekly radio show, Organize, Energize! on Mondays at 8:30am on www.talkstreamradio.com.


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