Mantra through the Mess

  “Screw it, let’s do it.”

“Make it beautiful.”

“Live your best life.”

“A computer on every desk.”

Can you pair these mantras with the business empires that were born from them?  They belong to Sir Richard Branson of Virgin, Martha Stewart Living, Oprah Winfrey, and Microsoft, respectively.

I once saw steady breathing return to a frazzled organizing client’s face after unknowingly creating a mantra for her on the spot.  She was readying her house to be sold and could barely stomach the work that has to be done, let alone explain it to me.  We walked room to room and I simply stated, “Well, I see three categories of things: to be boxed, to use for staging, and essentials to keep out.  OK? Box. Staging. Essentials.”  I think she was stunned at how instantly empowering these three words made her feel over her project.

I like to think of myself as not just an organizer, but someone who can inspire people to organize for themselves, using their own guidance coupled with mine.  I’m always looking for ways to connect the dots of sorting and tossing, to more exhilarating and enlightening pursuits.

Many of my clients have received a letterpress note card with my own personal mantra printed on the front: “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful. – William Morris.” A mantra can work twofold.  You can create your own to hold your integrity to a project or lifestyle, as in the cases above, or in my case, I recognized an existing statement as something that resonated with how I had already been living my life.  If you research the true definition of the word “mantra”, its’ usage here may be slightly out of context, but after all, isn’t any pursuit of order sacred?


7 Day Inspired Office Challenge:

Who do you admire who has offered a few poignant words of wisdom?  A celebrity?  A parent?  A teacher? Take their mantra and apply it to creating peace and order in your office.  Program it into your screensaver.  I’ll even let you put it on a sticky on the computer screen if you promise to take it down at the first sign of a tatter.