Thursday, July 8, 2010

Are Creative People Disorganized or Is It Just Me?

I'm in the process of cleaning, re-organizing, and de-cluttering my home room by room. The reason for this is 1) to give my children responsibilities and something productive to do during the summer, 2) to help my household (and hopefully my life) run smoother so I can make time to write each day, 3) because I'm tired of the little white dust that has settled on top of my curtains, and 4) to prove that not all right-brained creative people live in chaos. (I've heard the definition of CHAOS is: Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome.) That's way too stereotypical, and it certainly doesn't apply to me.

So, while I was going through a room the other day, I received a phone call asking if I would please send a baby picture and a recent school picture of my daughter with her to YW that night. Sure, I could do that. Eager to get it done, I set off to find her pictures, which I knew exactly where they were. (See, I am organized.) Only the box they were in was completely stuffed full of pictures, so it took a while to go through all my "organized" packets to finally find a baby picture. (I think the baby in it was her. It wasn't labeled, so it could have been a picture of my other daughter, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed.)

The whole time I was looking, I kept coming across pictures and thinking, "Oh, I remember this. I remember when my kids were that young. Oh..." When I finally found the picture I was looking for, my leg was numb from sitting on it so long. But the weird thing was, my daughter's current school pictures were nowhere to be found. Then I remembered that there was a stray picture of her by my computer desk. I found it in less than two minutes. Aha! But it was crinkled and unusable.

Alas, I did have a picture of her on my computer that I could just print out. That would be the best solution under the circumstances. Once I logged on to my computer and scanned through the hundreds of family pictures saved on Picasa, I finally found it. But when I went to open the picture to print it out, it disappeared as soon as it appeared, over and over, and over again. This was really annoying because I was trying to get "organized" and still had a number of things I needed to do.

I thought that maybe my mouse was going haywire or perhaps my computer had gotten one of those viruses going around. I tried exiting or logging off, but everything I clicked on disappeared as soon as it appeared. Somehow, though, I managed to restart my computer, and while it was restarting, I went to work in another room. When I returned, with a fresh pair of eyes, I noticed the source of my computer's haywire-ness. It wasn't the mouse. It wasn't a virus. The corner of a book on my desk had fallen onto the escape key of my keyboard, so every time I had clicked on something, that book was escaping me out of the program as quickly as I had entered it.

Now I agree, as most book lovers do, that books are a great way to escape, but lets face it, maybe I am a little disorganized and have just a tiny bit of the right-brained creative chaos thing going on.

When I really think about it, could living in a slightly chaotic condition be preventing me from writing as I'd like? I believe so. When my time and home are not organized and scheduled, I constantly feel that there are more important things that I need to be doing than writing. For me, I need to be relaxed and feel it's okay to write. When I'm thinking about all there is that needs to be done, it squashes my creativity. So with that in mind, because I believe in personal growth, my goal is to have more order and organization in my home and in my life so that I can crank out more books and have fun while I do it.

So, are creative people disorganized or is it just me?


Chanelle said...

Nope ~ it isn't just you. I'm the exact same way. I would like to solve my problem by hiring a maid, but I don't think that will happen any time soon. LOL

jen said...

It would be great to say that it's just you, but I am the same way too! I feel so much better & more relaxed when my home is organized, but it rarely is.
Thanks for your insights, I'll try to keep them in mind while I attempt to clean and organize my home. :)

Christine Thackeray said...

I love you! I think creative people DREAM of being organized, like we dream up characters. Just wish fiction and reality were closer- at least in my life.

Ketutar said...

There are pilers and there are filers, and most creative people are pilers. I'm a bit of both, because I'm really good at trying to adjust to the society's demands, and "cleanliness is godliness" and declutter hysteria has influenced me too. Also, I'm a bit of asthmatic...
It's not that filers were more organized than pilers, because you knew exactly where the photo was. I'm sure you know just as well your way around your piles as any filer. It's just that files look neater, proper and cleaner than piles.

I vehemently resist any effort to make me like the rest of the world, and even though I understand the logic of decluttering and the creative influence of clean space, I don't think anyone needs to feel bad for being a collector (not hoarder) and a piler.

As Albert Einstein said: "If a cluttered desk signs a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?"
I'd rather have a cluttered mind, than an empty mind. >:->