SailboatLast week, I returned home from a busy work trip during which I lived out of a suitcase for 11 days. While there are certainly creative ways one can keep organized while being a road warrior, I didn’t spend a whole lot of time making sure my luggage was in pristine order during this recent adventure. Adequate luggage organization was fine by me as the work presentations, meetings, conversations, and travels on my radar most definitely took precedence.

And I’m writing about this today because it’s important to address the misconception that being an organized person means that every possible aspect of life is organized, planned, sorted, filed, and alphabetized. Neatly. For me, that’s just not the case – and I’m genuinely okay with that! There are plenty of places where I’d love to be more organized in my life. We all know about my attempts to minimize magazine mayhem, and I’m not 100% there yet. And I have my fair of shelves, storage boxes, and drawers that could use some organizational support. And yet, for now, I’m fine with things the way they are. Even those non-organized, unplanned, and mismatched areas of life. After all, an organized life isn’t about being perfect – it’s about being peaceful.

My version of organizational bliss stems from my desire to savor the simplicity of stillness. It supports my interest in maintaining a sense of order that, in turn, allows me to carve out quiet time each day. And that means that some organization adventures happen with gusto while others may never appear on my bucket list (i.e. having the most organized suitcase that ever flew across the United States). So when you next take stock of your organization adventures, recognize that being an “organized person” really is however you define that phrase for yourself. The best part of living your best organized life is that you get to choose what being organized looks like. Choose the approach that works for you – not your neighbors, your family, or your friends – and you’ll be thrilled. I guarantee it.

* Photo by Tomasz Mazurkiewicz