I worked with a client who was ready to tackle his desk area. He told me he wasn’t sure how long it had been since he’d seen the desk clear. The desk was covered with mostly paperwork and some kids’ toys. We dove into the sorting, creating areas for the different types of paperwork: a pile for each one of the three kids’ artwork, a pile that needed to be filed, a pile of financial paperwork that his partner would look at and deal with, a box for paper that needed to be shredded, and a box that could be recycled as is.
After about an hour we started to see the surface of the desk. As he was sorting those last few stacks of paper, he commented, “Wow, this is dated four years ago! I can hardly believe I’ve let things go this long.” Thinking about his family situation I asked him, “Is that the year your most recent child was born?” He thought for a moment and answered, “Yes, yes it is! This paperwork is from just a couple months before she was born!” I told him that this is a really common phenomenon – a new baby comes (usually a second or third child in my experience) and the whole system falls apart, even if you thought you had a pretty good system in place.
I told him not to worry, sometimes kids throw us for a loop and we need a little bit of help getting back on track. He gave a huge sigh of relief once we had the desk cleared off. We set up bins for the kids’ artwork as it comes in and he and his partner are installing wall filers to corral the other paperwork coming into the home.
Have you experienced being disorganized after having a child? How did you work through this challenge? I’d love to hear about your experience in the comments below!
Holistic Professional Organizer and Clutter Coach at Synergy Organizing, LLC
©Synergy Organizing 2012
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