There are two types of people – people who do laundry a lot and in small loads and people who wait to do laundry until it is 3K loads and overwhelming. So, yes, there are many types of “laundry-doers”. However, in my many years at Seattle Organizers.com and helping clients with organizing their homes and finding laundry solutions, these are the basic two types of “laundry doers”. Which one are you? Are you another kind of “laundry doer”?
Be Economical and also Time Effective with Laundry Solutions
Unquestionably, doing smaller loads with low water levels, cold water, and phosphate free detergent is both environmentally and economically smarter
Doing large loads, depending on if you are single or a family, debatably, may be more economically wise but don’t do more than 2 large loads in a day unless you have scheduled your time to actually fold it and put it away
Obviously, everyone’s lives vary in size and style. So, no matter which size or what lifestyle you have, try doing small loads as often as you can
Schedule laundry times in – yes, set alarm and schedule it on your phone
Get it done!
SORT – FILL – PUSH BUTTON – Go do another planned home TASK or whatever you want – SET PHONE ALARM & TIME IT – PUT IN DRYER – REMOVE –FOLD, ROLL and HANG IMMEDIATELY– PUT AWAY – DONE!!
The key thing to take with you on this is to not let it pile up too much and schedule it in to be doing while doing other things you want to do or need to do, like the dishes or looking at Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest or Facebook or whatever you want!!
Why we Procrastinate Organizing our Homes and Lives
The Psychology of Procrastination
Of course, we associate procrastination with home organizing. Gratefully, last week I read a great article in the NY Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/25/smarter-living/why-you-procrastinate-it-has-nothing-to-do-with-self-control.html I highly recommend the read. After researching and participating in DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) and also CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), I can indeed relate to “emotional regulation” as being a core reason why we procrastinate. It is not that we are lazy, it is that there is an emotional detachment or attachment to procrastinating.
“Procrastination is an emotion regulation problem, not a time management problem,” said Dr. Tim Pychyl, professor of psychology and member of the Procrastination Research Group at Carleton University in Ottawa. It is not laziness.
It is not in capability, talent or lack of skills and education – it is an emotional block.
“Overwhelmed” is the description that I have heard for decades from clients about how they feel when they look at their unorganized closet, home-offices, kids rooms, bedrooms, cluttered kitchen cabinets and their over-all lives. I understand the burdonsome procrastination phenomena, as I have procrastinated writing this procrastination article for one week. Irony 5000!
HOW TO STOP PROCRASTINATING?
1.) Write down your intentions every morning or as soon as you can. Give purpose and meaning as to WHY you want to get the task done and how it will make you feel.
2.)Give yourself a reward after completing it: a food treat, a self-care treat or something that you don’t normally allow yourself to take the time to do. For me, it is painting my nails or toenails – getting them painted.
3.) Prioritize which task will bring the best rewards- professional or personal tasks. Then, organize your time to do it asap.
” In the case of procrastination, we have to find a better reward than avoidance — one that can relieve our challenging feelings in the present moment without causing harm to our future selves.”, said psychiatrist and neuroscientist Dr. Judson Brewer, Director of Research and Innovation at Brown University’s Mindfulness Center. He calls it the B.B.O. – Bigger Better Offer.
When we procrastinate we feel guilt, shame and self-loathing, which are not productive feelings.
However, the longer we procrastinate, the worse we feel about ourselves. I think of the consequences of “not doing it” versus the consequences of “Getting it Done”. The feeling of how I will feel after I have completed the looming task. Sit down and “Do it now” Prioritize first and then start doing it. Whether it is your best work or not, start doing it and the motivation will follow.
4.) Think of how you will “feel” after you have tackled this task and plan out your reward.
5.) Plan out your days – a big battle for me and for many of us. If you work for yourself, this is a MUST. If you work for others – this is a MUST. If your work allows you the option of not constantly getting emails, pick a time to get emails. Our brains do not multi-task well, according to neuroscience. Another blog on that later…
Productivity Hacks and Procrastination Hacks are all over the internet
I found that the above New York Times article by Charlotte Lieberman summed it all up very well and also gives the “why” and what to start doing to uncoil the evil procrastination demon. Emotional regulation takes time and work but the only way to start being consistent is to “Do It Now.” . Procrastination and Home Organizing go hand in hand, but they don’t have to!
Contact us Nowfor a Free Organizational Consult and we can figure out how to create a plan to move forward and to start “New Habits” so the clutter won’t keep piling up in your home and most importantly, in your mind.
I was recently with a client and working with her on her entire home that had been bombarded by her own past and that of her parents. In our first conversation she said, “I don’t want to be like my parents who I believe are “collectors” or maybe even hoarders.” I can’t tell you how many people say a similar comment in regard to their family. They may blame their parents or a parent for why they can’t let things go and let their “stuff” pile up. Is clutter-making genetic? Therein, leaving their mind cluttered; wasting time looking for things and effecting their self esteem because they are so overwhelmed by all of it that they become stunted. I started researching and found some stunning insight and research based facts regarding inheriting the “clutter gene”. It is still debatable between the professionals. I believe that it is a combination of hereditary and learned behavior.
After doing Residential Professional Organizing for 21 plus years, I do believe that people can change their habits (the 60 day thing) if repetition is consistent and daily. However, it is quite a challenge for many of us in this land of fast-paced living and the “Distraction Crisis” with social media sucking up so much of people’s time where they could be purging ancient relics from their homes. I have some of my own personal habits that seem impossible to conquer. The first step is being aware. My client with her fear of becoming like her parents and many other clients with the same dread, have taken the first step – getting professional help. So, I will leave theory or fact of inheriting a “clutter gene” open for discussion. Here are a few professional views on this.
“Exactly what triggers hoarding compulsions and desires is still under investigation. Like OCD, it may be related, at least in part, to genetics and upbringing.” –Mayo Clinic
“But biology is not destiny. Just because somebody has a genetic predisposition to develop a certain behavioral condition, that doesn’t mean they are doomed.”
-David F. Tolin, Ph.D., founder of the Anxiety Disorders Center at The Institute of Living in Hartford, CT
“People who have a compulsive urge to collect and clutter their homes with junk can partly attribute their problem to genes, according to a British study.”
Researchers from King’s College London used a twin study to find that genetic predisposition explained a large amount of the risk for compulsive hoarding – a mental health problem in which people have an overwhelming desire to accumulate items normally considered useless, like old newspapers or junk mail.
Of the more than 5000 twins in the study, roughly two percent showed symptoms of compulsive hoarding and genes appeared to account for half of the variance in risk.
Researcher Dr. David Mataix-Cols said it has long been known that compulsive hoarding tends to run in families.
But he told Reuters Health that what has not been clear is whether that pattern is due to genes or to something in the home environment, like parenting practices.
“Twin studies allow us to separate these two sources,” Mataix-Cols said.
The study, published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, included both identical and fraternal twins. Identical twins share all of their DNA while fraternal twins share roughly half of their genes, making them no more genetically similar than non-twin siblings.
If genes are a more important factor than shared environment in a given disorder, then identical twins would be more similar in their risk of the problem than fraternal twins would be.
Mataix-Cols and his colleagues found that among female identical twins, when one twin showed compulsive hoarding symptoms, the other twin also did 52 percent of the time. Among fraternal twins, that figure was 27 percent.
There was no evidence, however, that environmental factors shared by twins contributed to compulsive hoarding. Instead, “non-shared” environmental factors – those unique to individuals – seemed to be at work.
Past research has shown that many people with hoarding problems have a history of traumatic events, according to Mataix-Cols. In particular, they have elevated rates of sexual abuse and “loss” – of a loved one or a home, for instance.
“What the study suggests is that genes are important, but probably some environmental stressors are needed to cause or trigger the hoarding problem,” said Mataix-Cols, adding more research is needed into this topic.
He said the hope was to find better therapies for compulsive hoarding as behavioral therapy and antidepressants are now the main forms of treatment, but they have met with limited success.