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Monday, January 31, 2011

Choose between maze and space

There are people who carefully `preserve' rusty needles. Apparently, it will be of some use, some day. Some others prefer to sit atop clutter and work. These are not necessarily limitations, as long as they help you achieve your goals 

 WHERE ARE YOU PLACED?: Students can be divided into five categories on the basis of their space management styles.
While discussing the book `How to be organised in spite of yourself' by Sunny Schlenger, who classifies the standards of a student into two broad categories, time management and space controlling, we identified five types students with regard to time controlling: `hoppers' who prefer to do many things at a time, `perfectionists' wasting their time polishing the minute details, `skippers' looking at the big picture and failing at small important niceties, `cliff hangers' who are able to work only under pressure, and `fence sitters' who never take a decision for fear of failure.
Pertaining to space controlling the author says that when we are immersed in great many activities, it is almost impossible to have a hassle-free existence. But still we can have a place for everything and everything in its place. Schlenger recognises five types of people in this regard.

Dumpers: These people are happy to keep everything on their table and be pleased to look at the work they are contemplating. Or some may also think "Anyway I have to work next day and hence why put them back today?" A student with this attitude wastes much time to locate the notes buried between the books. These people suffer a lack of storage space and confuse with major paper processing problem at a later phase. Parents should be able to teach the children from their initial stages about placing things in a systematic way. 
Clean-desks: For this type of people, clean desk means clean mind. Every paper is hidden, replaced by small statues or flowers. They are supposed to be good at work, provided they maintain records. They follow the daily planners, otherwise they fail to complete the schedulesunder the influence of tranquillity and peace of mind.

Right Anglers: Clutter does not bother the right anglers as long as it is arranged properly. Neatness is more important to them. According to the author, a need to feel in control, compulsively straightening things, and valuing form over substance are the hallmarks of this kind of people. They should understand that unorthodox management systems are okay as long as their systems are workable. They should cultivate the habit of being merciless about discarding junk. The problem with right angler students is that they don't like to start any `big' work that they cannot finish it in one sitting. They need to re-organise tasks into smaller and more easily completed jobs.

Pack rats: A person who saves everything with an un-compromised belief that it may come in handy someday is a pack rat. They feel sentimental about their possessions and sometimes preserve worthless things as treasures. They are unable to decide what to keep and what to throw away. They have to develop the tendency of giving away needless things. They should recognise the value of space and comfort. The philosophy that `everything perishes some with time' suits perfectly to pack rats.

Total slobs: Unlike the above type, these people save the things without any intention. They do not value possessions. Still the idea of discarding never occurs to them. They hate to organise and generally are the product of bad parenting. They are sometimes absent minded, short-tempered or may be depressed also.

They should cultivate the habit of making changes gradually. For example, instead of throwing the clothes everywhere, they can place them at a particular place.
It is up to you. One should know what one wants, how to get there and what to do if one cannot go there. Goethe, the nineteenth century poet and scientist correctly said, "Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least". And that is `organising life'.

Yandamoori Veerendranath

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