by Janis Susan May/Janis Patterson
I have been vindicated! In the Rodale Organic Life magazine, on 21 January, 2016, Chris Michel writes about The Surprising Health Benefits of Clutter, then goes on to say Before You Start Purging, Find Out Whether That Messy Desk Is Good For You.
Well, as one who has a desk piled so high it’s sometimes hard to see over, I had to read the article. Basically, it says that clutter is not automatically bad, that clutter can – but not always – act as a starting point for creativity. Michel’s theory uses the example of a plethora of post-it notes, many of which will not work in the current project. If they are thrown away, he postulates, the idea is gone. If they are left, though, it is possible that something there will jump out and enrich your current work-in-progress.
Michel also says that being excessively neat becomes a time-sink and contra-indicative to creative thought, which in itself is somewhat chaotic. He says that “…environmental disorder actually stimulates creativity.”
If you want to read the entire article, you should be able to find it here.
I think it comes down to time. Do you want to spend time cleaning and tidying and de-cluttering, or do you want to spend as much time as you can writing? I plump for writing – though perhaps too much. Our house is a disaster and perhaps needs excavating more than cleaning. In our defense, though, we are in the process of cleaning out our last storage room and getting rid of stuff, which in its own way actually creates more clutter for a while. See? I can justify anything, but that doesn’t affect my desk, however; I think the dog might be hiding somewhere in those piles of books, papers, notes and I’m-not-sure-what-that-is.
As an additional gift, Michel also says that a cluttered house can be the sign of a well-lived life.
Well, if all that’s true, I’m destined to be a mega-best-seller and the happiest creature on earth!
By the way, if you’re in the Bonham, Texas area on this coming Saturday, 6 February, thirteen wonderful romance authors and I will be featured at the Eighth Biennial “Romance in Bonham” panel discussion/reader event. It will be held from 11am to 1 pm at the Bonham Public Library, 305 E. 5th Street. Please come by if you can – it’s free, of course.