23 May + How to stay organized when your life gets turned upside down
How to stay organized ….
It’s hard to even think about how to stay organized when your life gets turned upside down, such as when a loved one gets ill or injured. It’s at times like these that you need to set aside decluttering and organizing projects and just focus on:
1) Taking care of your health
2) Taking care of your loved one
3) Keeping up with daily maintenance like eating healthy, cleaning lightly and paying the bills
Did you notice the first item on the list? Yup, you come first. I often use the oxygen mask analogy to remind people about self-care. During the safety demonstration on an airplane, the flight attendant will say, “In the event of a sudden change in cabin pressure, oxygen masks will fall from above. Adjust yours first before assisting others.” After all, if you run out of oxygen, it’ll be hard to help anyone else if you’re dead. It’s similar to if you fall into poor health; you won’t be able to care for your loved one if you’re lying in bed sick.
Something else to consider is recruiting other household members to help you. It’s important, even for young children, to have an idea about what’s going on and why things will be different for a few weeks. How do you talk to your kids, help them through this time, and ask for help? Consider this excerpt from a book called Tell My Sons… by Lt. Col. Mark M. Weber:
“We continued, discussing the healthy things you could do, like talking to your school counselor, or swimming or playing to direct your mind and your energies. We also discussed the unhealthy things you should avoid when “dealing” with your emotions and how vulnerable those emotions would make you. For example, your anger, fear, or sadness about the cancer may lead you to conclude that nothing matters anymore, and things you’ve never considered before—smoking a cigarette, trying alcohol, telling an adult to shut up, or taking your anger out on a friend—suddenly seem OK. “
His book deals with an extreme situation, but compared to what your family has faced before, your current life may be an extreme situation for you. Here’s the rest of the book excerpt if you’re interested.
So, how to stay organized when life throws your for a loop? In the end, when you get into tough situations, adhering to at least part of your regular maintenance routines will not only help you keep some semblance of normalcy, but you’ll also be able to emerge without feeling worlds behind in everything you need to do.