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Old 01-27-2004, 12:26 PM   #1
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Jeffie010603 HB User
Piles and piles...

Is anyone else struggling to organize your life?? I've purchased two books on the subject but have no time to read them. I'm desperate to get out of the mess that constantly surrounds me! I guess there's no way out but through...

That show "Mission Organize" has taught me to sort things into action, file, and trash, but when it comes to actually FILING stuff, and often when it comes to TRASHING or otherwise doing away with things, I feel RETARDED!!

I just worked for an hour sorting through a year's worth of papers, preparing them to presumably go into the filing cabinet, trying not to curse myself for allowing things to get this bad...

Just wondering if any of you have found any particularly useful strategies for overcoming the mundane must-do tasks, especially when they've been put off for too long...

 
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Old 01-27-2004, 03:28 PM   #2
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szarkam HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

Try having a friend to help you - that will keep you motivated.

 
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Old 01-29-2004, 10:14 AM   #3
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Re: Piles and piles...

Thanks, but I don't have any that would be suitable for such a role. I'm surprised that this isn't an issue for more people here...

 
Old 01-29-2004, 10:17 AM   #4
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szarkam HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

I am mainly here because of my daughter - so I can't personally relate to your difficulty, good luck and I wish you the best

 
Old 01-30-2004, 08:01 AM   #5
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jinglebts HB Userjinglebts HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

my husband has ADD, and he not only can he not throw anything away, he's a computer guy, so everything on the web gets printed out and tossed aside for later reading, and this has been going on for 20 years ... his office is a disaster zone, with two feet of "stuff" on the floor (i refuse to wade thru' it cuz' i'll fall) ...

even my DH recognizes the problem: he once said, about filing stuff, that either everything goes into one big file, or he has a gazillion trillion little files for each piece of paper ...

the trouble is, he becomes constantly distracted, and loses track of everything ... it has become a great source of strain on our marriage ...

and the meds aren't working!! FAUGH!!

jb
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Old 01-30-2004, 10:02 AM   #6
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Re: Piles and piles...

THANK YOU for commiserating! Glad I'm not the only one with this struggle... I was interviewing a new sitter yesterday whose home was immaculent (sp?). She is living my dream, in that EVERYTHING in her life is in its place! I feel like that Charlie Brown kid with dust all around him, except instead of dust it's piles and piles of STUFF!! From my home to my car to my office... My meds ARE helping me to focus, but it's still an uphill battle to get organized!

 
Old 01-30-2004, 04:55 PM   #7
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Blaana HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

This is how I deal with the piles of papers issue. I have a portable file box that holds hanging file folders. I have a file for each member of the family. And then the others are named according to what I need them to be, like insurance, bills paid, school, misc, etc. When I go through the mail or a pile of papers I have the file cabinet and the garbage bag next to me. If you run out of room get 2. And have extra file folders with labels and if you can't decide on where to put something just make a new folder.

This week I found a way to get the house clean. I scheduled to have the carpets cleaned. I have been cleaning like crazy for the past few days getting ready for them.

Blaana

 
Old 01-30-2004, 10:49 PM   #8
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Angry Re: Piles and piles...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blaana
This is how I deal with the piles of papers issue. I have a portable file box that holds hanging file folders. I have a file for each member of the family. And then the others are named according to what I need them to be, like insurance, bills paid, school, misc, etc. When I go through the mail or a pile of papers I have the file cabinet and the garbage bag next to me. If you run out of room get 2. And have extra file folders with labels and if you can't decide on where to put something just make a new folder.

This week I found a way to get the house clean. I scheduled to have the carpets cleaned. I have been cleaning like crazy for the past few days getting ready for them.

Blaana
thankfully, that works for you ... i've organized a file cabinet, labelled as you suggest, and i dutifully file everything i can get my hands on ... i bought my DH a white box in order that it stand out and shout "Important Papers Go Here!!" for him and he's since lost several crucial documents regarding insurance and unemployment ... and still the files on computer security and linux mount, and my husband just sees one big mishmash of stuff (that i'm not allowed to touch) ...

i got his walls painted a couple of years ago, but he just stuck everything in a huge heap on the bed ... see what i'm up against?

jb
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Last edited by jinglebts; 01-30-2004 at 10:50 PM.

 
Old 01-30-2004, 10:54 PM   #9
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jinglebts HB Userjinglebts HB User
Talking Re: Piles and piles...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffie010603
THANK YOU for commiserating! Glad I'm not the only one with this struggle... I was interviewing a new sitter yesterday whose home was immaculent (sp?). She is living my dream, in that EVERYTHING in her life is in its place! I feel like that Charlie Brown kid with dust all around him, except instead of dust it's piles and piles of STUFF!! From my home to my car to my office... My meds ARE helping me to focus, but it's still an uphill battle to get organized!
well, at least your meds are helping ... what was the name of that little kid -- don't recall ...

anyhoo, good luck ...
jb
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Old 02-05-2004, 08:35 AM   #10
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Unhappy Re: Piles and piles...

The Charlie Brown character is "Pig Pen" and I am him in a female form. Talk about piles!!!!! Unfortunately, I go junkin' constantly (auctions, yard sales, thrift stores) because I sell antiques/collectibles. I am wonderful at the hunt and finding great things for 25 cents that I know are worth $30.00, but. . . I am lousy at turning it around, cleaning and pricing, taking it to the flea market, putting on ebay, etc. I think someone called it completion anxiety. My 13-year-old daughter just last week called it the L-A-Z-Y disease. My husband says its amazing how I'll get up super early and drive two hours to stand in the cold all day at an auction, only to bring it home and pile it up on the porch instead of storage. The pile on the porch just got snowed on last night. My garage is full, every room is full, and my two storage units are full. Oh, I do have the organized file cabinet, too. I believe I would have no trouble sorting, filing, etc., if I could just figure out which pile the bills/important paperwork are in!!!!!

Any known cures?!?

 
Old 02-05-2004, 10:38 AM   #11
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jinglebts HB Userjinglebts HB User
Talking Re: Piles and piles...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ozarkheaven
The Charlie Brown character is "Pig Pen" and I am him in a female form. Talk about piles!!!!! Unfortunately, I go junkin' constantly (auctions, yard sales, thrift stores) because I sell antiques/collectibles. I am wonderful at the hunt and finding great things for 25 cents that I know are worth $30.00, but. . . I am lousy at turning it around, cleaning and pricing, taking it to the flea market, putting on ebay, etc. I think someone called it completion anxiety. My 13-year-old daughter just last week called it the L-A-Z-Y disease. My husband says its amazing how I'll get up super early and drive two hours to stand in the cold all day at an auction, only to bring it home and pile it up on the porch instead of storage. The pile on the porch just got snowed on last night. My garage is full, every room is full, and my two storage units are full. Oh, I do have the organized file cabinet, too. I believe I would have no trouble sorting, filing, etc., if I could just figure out which pile the bills/important paperwork are in!!!!!

Any known cures?!?
you certainly do have a real problem there ... would counselling help? maybe you could sell some of your stuff to pay for it ... but is there marital discord there?? sounds like a great source of it ...

a.
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Old 02-09-2004, 12:16 PM   #12
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ZeeMe HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

Here is some good advice that I found on the internet. It really helps if you are wanting to de-clutter. Sometimes that is the first step before you can actually organize. Hope it helps:

The 27-Fling Boogie
We do this assignment as fast as we can. Take a garbage bag and walk through your home and throw away 27 items. Do not stop until you have collected all 27 items. Then close the garbage bag and pitch it. DO NOT LOOK IN IT!!! Just do it.

Next, take an empty box and go through your home collecting 27 items to give away. Suze Orman taught me this in her book, The Courage to be Rich. This will change the energy in your home and bring about good feelings. Every time I do this I feel better and my home is becoming decluttered in the process. As soon as you finish filling the box, take it to the car. You are less tempted to rescue the items.

Rule of thumb: if you have two of any item and you only need one, get rid of the least desirable.


The Hot Spot Fire Drill
Here is a problem that we all have and continue to struggle with - Hot Spots. What is a hot spot?

A hot spot is an area, when left unattended will gradually take over. My favorite analogy is of a hot spot in a forest fire, if left alone, it will eventually get out of hand and burn up the whole forest. This is what happens in our homes. If left unattended, the hot spot will grow and take over the whole room as well as making the house look awful. When you walk into a room, this is the first thing you see.

CLUTTER ATTRACTS CLUTTER!
Do you have areas like this that continue to grow if left alone? Does the rest of the family see this as a place to put things when they do not want to put them where they belong? It is our job to nip this in the bud! Get rid of that pile, find the surface underneath and stop this Hot Spot from becoming a raging clutter inferno! Watch for the Hot Spot fire drill reminder - then try it - it works!


The 5 Minute Room Rescue
This is a reminder to spend just 5 minutes clearing a path in your worst room. You know this area of your home: the place you would never allow anyone to see. Just 5 minutes a day for the next 27 days and you will have a place that you can be proud to take anyone!

Last edited by ZeeMe; 02-10-2004 at 02:12 AM. Reason: Shortened Reply

 
Old 02-09-2004, 12:28 PM   #13
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Re: Piles and piles...

See reply above. Deleting this one.

Last edited by ZeeMe; 02-10-2004 at 02:09 AM. Reason: duplicate

 
Old 04-21-2004, 10:01 PM   #14
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wfrarck HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

Don't give up! I have just been recently diagnosed and I have tried several things that have really helped! First of all - I found a book that was about organizing specifically for ADDers. 2nd of all - I found a professional organizer who specializes in ADDers - she was able to help me think through ways that will help me be organized and not just things that work for her. Finally, I have spent a BUNCH of time searching the internet for things that will HELP me remember to do things. I thought that meds would be the "magic" answer, but they are not, they just help me focus long enough figure out what to do. I am slowly learning to do things differently than "normal" people and also to stop trying to hide my disorder by trying to do things like everyone else! There's a LOT of great sites out there that will help you learn how to work WITH your ADD instead of against it!

The other thing that I want to try as soon as I get enough money saved up to do it is to hire an ADD coach!

Good Luck to you and hang in there!

 
Old 04-21-2004, 10:13 PM   #15
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sodawater HB User
Re: Piles and piles...

I've adapted by keeping my space as simple and ridiculously ordered as I can.
I have forced myself into the habit of getting rid of stuff every month that I don't need. I think I've learned to take pleasure in having a really minimal, stripped down and working environment. If anything, I now find myself eager to get rid of stuff because I know it will make things simpler. And I figure anything I truly need can be replaced. The trick is really the shift in thinking - instead of seeing the piles as preparation for unexpected crises or needs or future uses, see them as weighing you down. You will quickly get in the habit of WANTING to get rid of stuff.

For me it helps to just be obsessive about it. I try to ALWAYS put stuff back in its place,etc. Every single night. It seems like a lot of work at times, but whenever I let it go for even two days, the ensuing chaos reminds me why I live like that in the first place. Much much more appealing.

As for paperwork, when the mail comes, I immediately discard most of it. Bills are immediately opened and placed in a stamped envelope. If I have the cash to pay, I do it immediately without thinking about it. I use Money Orders instead of checks (CANNOT balance a checkbook) - it's not really that inconvenient; you can get them at the Post Office for nothing and there's absolutely no stress involved. This has worked really well for me. Someday, assuming I ever make a reasonable income, I plan to hire an accountant to just do most of it for me. Given the stress and amount of work it takes me, that investment seems like a bargain.

I tried using LifeBalance software to manage stuff but found it too overwhelming and counter-intuitive. Instead I've tried Microsoft Money mainly for the calendar feature which lets you know when things are due and when to pay to meet the deadline.

Good Luck!
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