Organized and Adaptable

gratitude, professional organizer, time, travel3 Comments

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I realized today that it’s been nearly a month since my last post.  Normally I like to post at least once a week, but sometimes life can throw us curve balls, and the things that don’t take priority fall to the side.  My husband and I were recently faced with some pretty extreme circumstances, including a medical emergency on his side of the family, and a death on my side of the family, that led to a lot of travel, quite an adventure, and a lesson in adaptability.

The medical emergency extended our stay in the New York City area from one week to two weeks for me, and three weeks for him.  Luckily we follow some simple rules when it comes to packing – hot, cold, wet, dry (meaning pack for each of these weather conditions); everything goes with everything (aka, pick one base color – black, navy, grey, brown, etc – and everything you pack goes with that color, including your shoes, this way you can mix and match at will); and if there is laundry service easily available, only pack about 3-4 days worth of clothes.  This has worked quite well for us in our travels, especially because it means we travel with only carry-on luggage.  Since we were at the airport and through security when we were called to the emergency, it may have been a problem to get our checked luggage back.  But since we were traveling light, we were able to just hop in the cab and get to the hospital.

To me this is not only organization, it’s adaptability.  We can’t always predict what will happen in our lives, and instead of fighting it and trying to take control all the time, I’ve found that going with the flow yields much better results.  Now I’m not talking about sitting on the couch all day with your hippie friends waiting for the universe to give you a message about where you life is going or anything like that.  What I mean is that when you are at least fairly organized, when life does throw you said curve balls, you’re able to easily shift gears and do what you need to do without adding more struggle to your life in an emergency situation.

Many people have this idea that if you’re organized, you’re anal retentive.  Not so!  In this type of situation, being organized is about knowing what tools (be that literally tools, paperwork, funeral clothes, etc) are available to you, where they are, and using them when appropriate…. And then being adaptable when the situation doesn’t resolve the way you anticipated.  You can’t control everything in the universe, but you can control how you react to what happens to you.

Have you dealt with emergency situations recently?  How did being organized or not being organized help or hurt you in those situations?  Please leave you comments below!

Holistic Professional Organizer and Coach at Synergy Organizing, LLC

©Synergy Organizing 2012

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  • Pingback: Organized and Adaptable Part 2 |()

  • Wow – what a great example of the value of organization!

  • TracyKPierce

    Thanks, Janet – it definitely would have put us in a worse off situation had we not been organized!