Recently I got an email inviting me to a webcast event starring Oprah’s clutter guru Peter Walsh. I’m sure this had to be either an early April Fool’s joke or a cyber-Freudian mistake— even so, they didn’t have to twist my arm to get me to sign up. I wore Estee Lauder makeup for years mainly because they gave free gifts; Peter Walsh was offering free goodies plus instruction and inspiration.
A few days ago a box arrives containing a starter kit for his new office organization system, designed with Office Max. I don’t open anything, waiting for Walsh’s guidance on the webcast.
Today is the day; it’s a rare event when I show up on time. I consider this a victory even though I don’t have to drive to my desk, and can attend wearing pajamas.
Anyway I watch my screen as Walsh explains the new system to his online audience—-about a million professional organizers….and me. In this group, I am definitely an Outlier outcast.
You can tell by the Twitter traffic– people are over the moon over #Office Max.
Here is Peter, describing transparent files, special slots for tabs and Post-it notes— everything coordinated and color coded to make life smooth and simple and sensible. I’m dazzled. I have stars in my eyes.
Then I take my eyes off Peter for a second. And I look over to the right of the screen. At my desk.
And here’s what I see.
Thank goodness this isn’t Skype and Peter can’t see ME.
Spare me the questions. (Is this really where you work? You swear you didn’t create this mess just for a picture? Aren’t you embarrassed for anyone to see this?) The answer is: Yes.
I actually made a list of stuff I uncovered on my desk a few months ago. Today I consider making another list– until I realize some of the same things are still there.
Meanwhile the webcast ends and I do get inspired. I spend at least 5 minutes clearing off my desk. Then I gather every piece of Peter Walsh’s system—and I put it where it belongs: on Cluttercast, where someone else will actually USE it.