What the hell happened to my office!

Some days I write on my private blog titled What the hell happened to my brain. Today, I am once again frustrated with and perplexed about the state of my office. Hence the reason this blog is titled What the hell happened to my office (again!!!).

It is only recently that I filed everything covering my desk, the top of the filing cupboards, the floor space, and any other surface I could find, and tidied it up including cleaning it. Already it is heading towards being one hell of a mess again. I once worked in a medical practice, managing up to 12 specialists at any one time, and my office was always tidy, everything filed perfectly, my typing skills virtually 100% accurate, and my ability to maintain a good working space impeccable.

I feel like I can blame becoming a mid-life student; it is true this could be where my untidy office really started as with full time studies, working and having a young family, and then have books and resources filling every space in almost every room some of the time as you read and write for assignments and study for exams. Then, with the impact of the symptoms of dementia, it has definitely been getting more difficult to not only keep up with it all, but to even know how or where to file things. l

Bogging could also be a reason for it, as I would much rather write than tidy up my office. No doubt the effort of constantly wading through papers on the floor or desk make my brain work hard, which is supposed to be good for me. Perhaps I should just relax into having a messy office, except my old ways of being ‘slightly’ obsessively tidy keep me wondering if I must try harder!

Once, I had the nickname of having the ‘Shiny Sink Academy, as a nursing girlfriend came to visit me the same day I had returned home from having surgery, and my sink was back to being highly polished! When I was living on the farm as a kid, probably because I was bored, and also because I wanted approval from my parents, I was always cleaning things; the kitchen, the bathrooms, the garage, the sheds. Everywhere and anywhere! It used to frustrate my parents as they might have been half way through doing something like cooking or reading the paper, and simply move on to do something for a few moments like hang out the washing, and I would have put everything away and cleaned it up.

However, when I left home at 16 to start Year 12, and then to go nursing, they did admit they really missed all the work I did! This tidiness and cleanliness was fuelled by an elderly unmarried great aunt who used to stay at my grandparents where I also spent many holidays, and she was so obsessively tidy she used to sweep the dirt on the road from the farmhouse down to the main road, and rake the white stones on the paths around the garden beds.

Then as a student nurse in the mid 70’s, we had to clean the wards, pan rooms and everywhere except the kitchen and floors; the very bossy strict Matron then used to put on a pair of white gloves and check surfaces, everywhere! If she found any dust or dirt, we then had to do it ALL again. We cleaned and polished so much, I sometimes wonder how we had time to care for the patients, but we did; nursing care back then was very good.

So you see, my slight obsession with tidiness is hard to put to bed. I did many courses in the 80’s to stop being so tidy, followed up with a lot of reading of books such as ‘When Being Control gets Out of Control’, which worked (because I worked on it) and I can easily relax now with dirty dishes on the sink. If there is a God, then he has a sense of humour as he sent me a son who was as a child innately untidy; such a sense of humour! This, and illness, and lots of self-help courses and reading have allowed me to relax into untidiness. Maybe in the end, this is why I let my office become such a paper pigsty?! Who knows, who really cares!

9 thoughts on “What the hell happened to my office!

  1. Pingback: My office has younger onset dementia | Creating life with words: Inspiration, love and truth

  2. From one obsessive compulsive to another … you’
    re amongst friends my dear!! My mother was brought up to literally believe that cleanliness was next to Godliness. If she dare strayed from the squeaky clean path her mother would punish her severely. After all you don’t want to go to hell over a dirty toilet!!
    Although I don’t subscribe to damnation over disorder, I do like a clean and tidy house. I look at a pile of papers or a messy cupboard as a challenge and an opportunity to feel satisfied over a job well done. I guess I should get out more!!! Love you Kate!

  3. A Boss once put a note on my desk “untidy desk-untidy mind”, I had to respond to his pristine environment with “empty desk- empty mind”. No more was said.

  4. My grandmother use to say “if you just make your bed it made your room look tidier and better presented”, the other thing I lived by with a messy daughter in the house that my mother also lived by, “if you close the door then you can’t see it and it shouldn’t bother you”. But an office is a personal space which can be anything you want, I had a boss once who told me when i was in sales “a messy desk means your busy, productive and challenging yourself to fit many projects into your life”. I live by this today and don’t apologise for the messy desk, I do the odd day of tidying but being who I am it doesn’t take long to get back to organised “chaos”

  5. The older I get the less these things are important. The most important things to me is sharing my life with someone who loves me and takes care of me when I need it. Who holds my hand when I need support and bashes me around the ears when I’m being a DH ( no relation to dear husband).
    When the office is full move to another room.

    Love you.

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