As someone who fears change of any kind, I was the last person to expect that I would leave my job of 14 years in 2014 and pursue a sabbatical year filled with the unexpected.
The night I was officially “unemployed” was a long one – filled with disbelief that I had made such a monumental decision, sadness about leaving a job that fulfilled me, nostalgic reminiscing of the amazing students I had the pleasure of teaching and learning from, and many, many thoughts about what would come next.
Any change is difficult. An unexpected change can be even more so, especially for someone who views change as something to fear.
For me, even when things were not going well, the routines, the familiarity, helped me cope and were their own source of comfort.
Knowing what to expect every day keeps us all feeling comfortable. Routines help us make it through each day ready to face what comes.
The problem with routines is that we can get stuck in a rut – doing the same thing over and over again, even when we know it’s not the best for us, our families, and our homes.
But sometimes circumstances force us to make changes even when we’re not quite ready.
Starting an organizing business after almost 20 years as a teacher was definitely not on my radar – until one day, it was. And all it took was reading a magazine article written by a Professional Organizer.
Honestly, I didn’t even know it was a job. Being organized was just who I am. And then I thought, why not try?
On the one hand, it’s a new venture, filled with unknowns and learning curves at every, well, curve.
On the other hand, it also seems so natural. Learning about the business, taking courses through Professional Organizers in Canada, and speaking to fellow organizers have definitely helped reassure me that this is the right thing for me.
Though starting from scratch has left me more scared about my future than ever before, it has also left me so excited about the opportunities for growth and development that this change is already bringing.
I know about change. I know how scary it can be. It takes away the familiar and forces us to face our lives from a different perspective.
And getting organized is a change like any other. It takes recognizing that perhaps what you’ve been doing until now is not working anymore. It takes committing the time and emotional energy needed to figure out how you can fix it so you can get your home, your office, and your time working for you again.
I love the idea of using my teaching experience to help people get organized and achieve any goal they set for themselves.
I know that, like me, many people would love to get more organized. We come home every evening and see the piles on the entrance-way tables and the out of style and out of season coats in our front hall closet, and we sigh. “I really need to go through those piles. I haven’t used that in years.”
But then someone asks us for something, or we have to make dinner, or we’re just too exhausted from a full day of work, so those piles stay where they are until the next time, when the scene replays itself.
My greatest excitement about starting EK Organizing is showing my clients that getting organized, like any life change, is a process, and can actually bring us somewhere better than where we are right now.
Rather than getting stuck in a rut of chaos and feeling overwhelmed, sometimes de-cluttering and setting up more efficient routines are just what a person needs to face the daily challenges that inevitably come up.
To quote a wise young Joey Potter, from Dawson’s Creek: “I’ve always had this tendency to assume that change, when it happens, can only be for the worse. You know? And lately, I kinda feel like that’s not true, like whatever’s waiting for me out there may not be that bad.”
Despite our fears about what the future holds, we can be assured that not all change needs to be traumatic. Nor does change need to happen overnight.
Take it from someone who knows – change can be scary but it’s also necessary. It brings a fresh perspective, and with it, an appreciation for everything that has brought you to this point.