It's Hard to Make a Difference When You Can't Find Your Keys: The Seven-Step Path to Becoming Truly Organized

It's Hard to Make a Difference When You Can't Find Your Keys: The Seven-Step Path to Becoming Truly Organized

by Marilyn Byfield Paul
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Overview

It's Hard to Make a Difference When You Can't Find Your Keys: The Seven-Step Path to Becoming Truly Organized by Marilyn Byfield Paul

Overbooking? Running late? Feeling overwhelmed by clutter and to-dos? Management consultant Dr. Marilyn Paul guides you on a path to personal change that will bring true relief from the pain and stress of disorganization. Unlike other books on getting organized, It’s Hard to Make a Difference When You Can’t Find Your Keys offers a clear seven-step path to personal development that is comprehensive in nature. 

Drawing on her own experience as a chronically disorganized person, Paul adds warmth, insight, humor, and hope to this manual for change and self-discovery.  She introduces the notion of becoming “organized enough” to live a far more rewarding life and make the difference that is most important to you.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780142196175
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/30/2003
Series: Compass Series
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 558,592
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 - 17 Years

About the Author

Marilyn Paul has a Ph.D. from Yale University and an MB.A. from Cornell. She is a principal in the consulting firm Bridgeway Partners, with clients that have included Harvard University, the U.S. Department of Transportation, Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Pfizer.

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It's Hard to Make a Difference When You Can't Find Your Keys: The Seven-Step Path to Becoming Truly Organized 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think this book is one of the most important works in the field of organizing I've ever read. I got goose-bumps reading this book. Why is it so great? These words feel, to me, like they come from the intersection of practical, actionable common sense and something much deeper and more profound: the essence of what inner peace and inner order are really about. The author had me hooked by page 9, where she provides an 8-point definition of what it means to be truly organized--a definition which I have quoted her on to nearly everyone I know who is interested in getting organized. The eight points range from the very practical ('You can keep agreements and make agreements you can keep') to the sublime and powerful ('You can do all of this with a great degree of PRESENCE OF MIND. You are able to pay attention to what you decide is important. This presence of mind also allows you to live with more awareness of a greater Presence, if that is what you are seeking.') For me, the pages just ring true, like the sound of a rightful, inspiring gong. And, on the practical side, it just so happens that at the back of the book there are five blank pages. By the time I had finished reading Chapter 2, all 5 pages were filled with my scribbles, notes, and fresh ideas for new approaches to my own work AND my own messes! This is not a 'hold your hand' kind of book. It is a book that inspires us to hold our own hands as we walk through the fire of our own messes and come out on the other side a truer, more centered version of ourselves.
CasualUnclutterer 8 months ago
This book brought me to tears more than once. It's a lyrical, cheerful, gentle, compassionate, sensible look at the consequences of disorganization and methods for re-framing negative mental habits that often reinforce disorganization which is compelling. I'm usually organized, and yes, I'm one of the Pros who always has been, but when I'm not organized it is often a direct symptom of some stressor in my life. I've read more than 50 books on organizing, as particular as Easy Closets (Joseph R. Provey) and as free-ranging as Throw Out Fifty Things (Gail Blanke). Ms. Paul's work is the first which helped me start approaching my destructive for-me mindset: stress = an excuse to let my structures slip. I'm emphasizing for-me because for many many someone elses, stress is not always or ever an excuse - we are all different. Stress can truly overwhelm people. But Ms. Paul's techniques might even then provide some relief. Ms. Paul understands living haphazardly because she "had to tackle her desk as if it were Mount Everest. I made thirty or forty attempts. I know this sounds exaggerated, but I had to get my figurative hiking boots, pack, and ice ax, and go after my desk with determination. The 'mountain' defeated me many times, but eventually I did conquer it. (I have a little flag waving at the top.)" page 11, last paragraph 2003 edition. Many of the BEST Pros are self-taught, now-organized "messies," and I'll go even farther and declare that any Organizer who claims s/he is always organized is probably fibbing. I'm tempted to quote dozens of bits and pieces from this marvelous book. I'll simply suggest that you read it. Lauren Williams, Owner, Casual Uncluttering LLC, Woodinville, WA USA
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing ¿ original, accessible, and transformative. Marilyn Paul takes a giant stride into the emerging field of 'life management' by combining the best from time management and organizing with deep insights into personal development and spiritual growth. In so doing, the book supports REAL change ¿ not just another set of 'to-do' lists, but an opportunity to understand our habits, make new choices about how we live, and create a life of excitement and challenge that all of us are looking for. As a professor of entrepreneurship and an executive coach in project completion, I recommend this book above any other that I have read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I suppose I was expecting something a little more concrete, but I found that this book read like one of those touchy-feely self-help books that feel all warm and fuzzy as you read them but don't make a damn bit of difference as soon as you put them down. When the author quoted a woman who eventually became neat as originally objecting to the very idea of neatness as being 'white, male, and straight' (and therefore, presumably, inherently evil), I decided that was enough P.C. crapola for me and closed the book. It might help some folks, and more power to them, but it struck me as a bunch of wishy-washy emotionalized fluff. Just do your dishes like an adult, fold the laundry, keep a wastepaper basket near the front door for the junk mail, screw in a hook to keep your keys on, only put your wallet/purse/glasses down in one or two well known spots, stop psychologizing everyday habits, and you'll probably accomplish more than you would by reading this book.