Organizationally Challenged

Existing evidence of pseudo-organization- AKA an ode to objects that have yet to find their true homes.

We are moving in 25 days. Have I bothered to pack one box yet? Nope. And I will be honest – have I bothered to completely unpack since I moved in with Nick in January? Nope. My second bedroom lacks a guest bed, and much to my budding homemaker heart’s dismay, has just functioned as storage. I loathe the moving process. I always have. I have moved so many times now over my lifetime that I have lost count, and I am not even a military kid!

This move marks my fourth in a year – that is an average of one move every three months. Can you see why I am dreading this? I think part of the message communicated to my heart after all has been, “Don’t settle down and get comfortable. It’s not worth it, because it will all have to come apart and be packed up again before you know it.” I wasn’t always this way, but I have somewhat lived my life as a nomad since college – which I began almost 8 years ago! – always waiting for the moment I would have to pick up and go again.

Each time I have moved, I have tried to purge a hefty chunk of my massive collection of stuff I have acquired over the years. Moving from a 2700 square foot house in Knoxville to a 1200 square foot apartment in Hoboken was a challenge to say the least, and now I am downsizing another 250. I am also an emotional person and artsy by nature – someone who hangs onto things for sentimental value or because they can probably be re-purposed or re-imagined and turned into something awesome. This means I have a lot of stuff that is “non-essential” but would pain me to get rid of. Still, I know I need to go through yet another round of paring down as this move approaches. I need to figure out what will be practically utilized in our new space. I would prefer not to waste precious space on storage!

Here are my strengths: I am fantastic at generating ideas or pulling inspiration from research. I love dreaming about the possibilities. While the logistics of getting moved makes me want to hyperventilate, the other side of moving into a new space and chance to finally settle in (at least for a full year, thanks to our lease) and make a living space my home gets me excited. Pinterest is the most fantastic hub for all things visually inspiring. I have to say thanks to my friend Kate and her lovely wedding blog for introducing us. I can keep all the pretty things I have my eye on in one place for reference later! I seriously want to hug the creators of Pinterest, and I wish I had it as a tool for the entire duration of my engagement and wedding planning process. It auto-generates inspiration boards for you. Genius, I say.

Apartment Therapy is another blog I’ve visited on a regular basis. Designing a smaller space might seem easier, but as a girl raised in the suburbs with lots of living space, this is really a new challenge. I love admiring what other people have created so much, but I have a harder time reigning in all my ideas and focusing on one theme or aesthetic because I have such eclectic taste. I tend to spend too much time worrying whether I (or Nick!) will hate the finished product, or if I will change my mind halfway through, so I keep most of my decor ideas safely in my mind instead of being turned into true artistic expression. In classic ENFP style, I love to begin exciting new projects, but often lose steam and enthusiasm before seeing them through to fruition. I doubt myself too much. Even this poor blog regularly suffers because of this – I will have a great idea, but then don’t blog it quickly enough before I become bored.  The wedding was great practice for fighting through and making concrete decisions, so hopefully I am getting better. Thank God I married an ESTJ, who by definition is “extremely talented at devising systems and plans for action, and at being able to see what steps need to be taken to complete a specific task.”

So I’m working on simplifying, de-cluttering, packing, re-purposing and redecorating my life over the next month. Phew! I am grateful for friends who are much better at organizing and seeing the big picture when it comes to design than I am, and this is a continual exercise in admitting my weaknesses and embracing the fact that God has put these people in my life because I need them. I need to stop living like a nomad and embrace the newlywed life and accept that this time, I’m not going anywhere for an entire twelve months. I want my home to be a retreat and my soft place to land. I don’t want it to be a place of scattered boxes and a continual source of stress.

Do you have any good tips for moving preparation? How about interior design ideas or systems on a budget? Lay ’em on me!

2 thoughts on “Organizationally Challenged

  1. Don’t worry Erika, I’m in the same boat. My move date is the same is yours and this will mark my 14th address over 5 states and 7 cities in the last 10 years. I loathe moving as well. It seems to be the one challenge in my life that does not become easier due to repetition.

    My only advice is to pretend you’re going on a two week vacation so you pack only the stuff you really need in a suitcase. Put it aside then pack everything else for the move. You’ve already made the decision about essentials don’t you have to agonize about every little thing and whether or not you’ll need it this week or the next. It may mean eating out a bit more or wearing an outfit a little more often than you normally would, but it’s totally worth the peace of mind. Good luck!

  2. Would love to be there to help you pack. The church ladies helped me and after 30 years in the same house believe me I needed help. Jondra and Gaye did the finish work and they are both very experienced movers!!!!
    I’m hoping my next move will be HEAVEN!!!!

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