Organization can change our whole lives for the better, but it is particularly beneficial to our health. Organization involves looking closely at our lives, choosing to get rid of anything that is not enriching us, and honoring the things that do by taking better care of them.
Organization is not achieved, as some think, by a rigid categorizing and documenting of things, papers, and pictures. It is more personal than that. It’s more of an art than a science, more like a dance than a database. This is because it is personal and requires the creativity of the person choosing to be organized.
Organization has a sometimes surprising benefit of helping to increase behaviors that bring health to our lives. These are some of the benefits tied to healthy behaviors that result from being organized.
Increased time for relaxation and fun: Organization affects our time in a very positive way. This, in turn, improves our relationships with ourselves and with others. Good Housekeeping reports that a study from the University of Pittsburgh offers proof:
“Enjoying leisure activities, like a painting class, is linked with health and wellbeing.”
Fewer problems with missed medications and doctor appointments: This practical health benefit cannot be overstated. Being organized limits how often we might be making mistakes in our everyday decisions that affect our health.
Better relationships: Choosing to be organized is a choice to better one’s relationships automatically. This is especially true of our relationships with those who share our spaces. Disorganization can cause any number of potential conflicts with forgotten appointments, errands, and responsibilities. Some experts estimate that over 80% of couples experience conflict caused by disorganization and clutter.
Increased sense of valuing ourselves and others: Being organized is way of respecting oneself and others. It is treating our relationships and resources as valuable and worthwhile. By choosing organization over chaos, we are saying that our time and energy is valuable because we are valuable. Being organized is a way of taking care of ourselves and the people who share our spaces.
More time and energy to exercise: Calendars and schedules (and the discipline to stick to them) are a part of being organized. The benefit of organizing our time is that we can save a great deal of it. Making a plan for how we use our time and energy allows us to use both responsibly. We can use the time we save for hitting the gym or getting out for a walk.
Clearer thinking to plan healthy meals: As our minds and our homes are decluttered, there is room for healthier choices and better willpower. This allows us to effectively manage our eating by allowing us the presence of mind to plan healthy meals and take the steps to follow our plan.
Most of us learn about the need to be organized by experiencing how uncomfortable life is when we are not. Organization is a skill, a habit, and a gift to ourselves, all in one.