Most people see organization as a good thing. However, new studies suggest there might be a downside to zealous compartmentalization. So how organized should you be? It may be helpful to take a look at the pros and cons of organization.
Pros of Organization
There are many benefits to being an organized person, including:
- Stress reduction. Life is just easierwhen you aren’t losing your keys every day or going into debt because you can never find your bills to pay them on time. Tidy habits also mean quick routines, which is a necessity if you have a busy family with kids who need to be taken to school and pets that need to be fed.
- Better health. Without the chaos that disorganization can bring into your life, your blood pressure will stay down, your digestive system won’t suffer irregularities, and you’ll sleep both longer and more deeply. De-cluttering your life is good for the body and
- Disorganization in your life can lead to disorganization in your mind, which isn’t helpful if you’re in recovery. Neatness is a critical component to many recovery programs and rehab facilities.
Cons of Organization
It might be hard to believe, but there can be disadvantages to being too organized:
- Lost time. Everyone wants an organized desk, but if you spend hours and hours arranging every paper clip, you’re wasting energy and effort that could’ve been better spent actually getting work done.
- Less creativity. Ever wonder why good ideas come in the shower? It’s because your brain is relaxed, allowing thoughts and half-formed plans to float along your subconscious until they meet in interesting ways. If you keep your mind rigidly compartmentalized, nothing will ever collide and trigger new ideas.
- Reduced compassion. Studies show that imagination is tied to empathy. You can’t “walk a mile in another person’s shoes” unless you’re able to envision yourself in their place. If you’re toorigid in your thoughts and habits, you might lose the ability to connect with people on a meaningful level.
There are advantages and drawbacks of being organized, so the key to a happy life is moderation. Put your things away and don’t procrastinate when it comes to cleaning dog hair off the couch, but don’t get so obsessive about dividing your food into color-coordinated containers that they expire during the process. Organization should be a helpful tool, not a hindrance to productivity.