I have to admit that I erred on the side of being very disorganized. What’s ironical is that I spend more time trying to organizing things rather than focusing on the things to be done.
Today I make a decision to invent my own ‘chaos management method’, which means this:
Taking the state of chaos as the normal circumstance of things. Then focus on one thing and do it with consistence, and feel comfortable to leave other things disorganized and chaotic. Gradually, that one thing, presumably the most important thing to do for a period of time, will drag chaotic matters into its orbit, forming a stable planetary system around the common core.
This may sound abstract, so let me give you an example:
When organizing numerous types of files in a computer, I used to put them into different categories and created an individual folder for them. The time spent on examining and organizing them are considerable, but the result is not satisfactory. Very soon, I will create a lot of folders with all kinds of names and initial purpose of organizing them is defeated.
Now, I will do this: throw all the files into a portable drive, and only keep the documents that is absolutely necessary for the current project in the computer disk drive. When the current project is finished or suspended, immediately move them to the portable drive. The only thing to keep in mind is that care should be taken to give the files recognizable names so that they can be easily searched and located in case they are resurfaced to attention.
Executive files should not be bothered with any form of organization. Photos should be named with their occasion and the date. For the Office files and informational files, make sure they are synchronized across the computers and backed up automatically. The idea is: rather than managing several chaotic universes, I would just throw all objects into one universe, and find the things I need in that big universe.
I am a non-linear person and this is my method of chaotic management.