(as I did today) makes me genuinely happy? I've always liked things in order. My mantra, unoriginal but nonetheless, is "a place for everything and everything in its place." Over the course of the years, I have used this principle to help more than one person (not always to their delight I might add :-)) to bring order to their chaotic homes. I always warn them that it will get a lot worse before it gets better and that patience and perseverance are key. We start by emptying all the closets and drawers and shelves and so on. You have to make place for everything before you can put everything in its place. Then there is the process of sorting and, hardest of all to the sentimental among us, discarding. The reward, when we're all done, is not only a neat home but also a system for keeping it that way.
I recognize that not everyone shares my passion for order but I have a hard time understanding why. I sympathize with people who feel cleaning is a chore; I'm not too fond of it myself. In fact, I use a cleaning service twice a month in my own home. (BTW, a very effective way to ensure my place stays neat since it is impossible for them to clean when the place is cluttered...and, yes, my place does get cluttered). What intrigues me is how people can live in clutter and still think. Even more intriguing are those who seem to prefer clutter to order. What does clutter have to recommend it?
Maybe it's the other way around. Maybe I need help introducing some chaos into my life? Trouble is, I draw the line when I no longer can find something I'm looking for. Then I bow at the altar of the goddess of order within and sim-sala-bim drawers get emptied, closets get organized, i's get dotted and t's get crossed. And with a great sense of inner satisfaction, I look all around and admire my handiwork. And smile.