Monday, March 7, 2011

Pretty Neat! Getting Organized Review (Giveaway Closed)

When I heard about the opportunity to review Pretty Neat: The Buttoned-Up Way to Get Organized and Let Go of Perfection, I had to smile.  Based on the title of the book, I think that authors Alicia Rockmore and Sarah Welch must have had someone almost exactly like me in mind when they wrote it.

Asked to write about "about an area in [my] life that has been a source of organizational stress," I looked around me and had no idea where to start!  Household clutter?  Check.  Overflowing email inbox?  Oh, yeah.  Too many things to do and not enough time?  Definitely.  I need this book!

All of these areas are sources of stress for me.  At the root of it all, though, is my tendency toward perfectionism.  If I can't do it perfectly, why even start?  The very first chapter contains two concepts that changed the way I looked at my lack of organization:
Why on earth, we asked ourselves, did ... women feel their "imperfect" ways left them short of the mark organizationally?  Perhaps it's because perfection has been held up as the gold standard when it comes to organization.  We think it's high time for a new standard of organization:  an imperfect one.

and

We often struggle with accepting an imperfect mind-set because we are afraid of what others will think of us.  They may think we are not good mothers, wives, or women if we suddenly stop striving for perfection.
Bingo.

We'd be here all day if I told you about all of my organizational challenges, so let's focus on the email overload.  I have eight email addresses, five of which I check at least twice every day.  I just added up the unread messages in just the three most-cluttered accounts:  9316.  (However, only 2562 are in the inboxes.)

Weird...11111 messages in my inboxphoto © 2009 Chad Swaney | more info (via: Wylio)

I've been mass-deleting the advertisements, newsletters, etc., as they arrive.  Now I'm taking a tip from Pretty Neat:  When I get those messages, instead of deleting them immediately, I'll open the messages and click the unsubscribe links.  My goal is to unsubscribe from at least ten email lists a day.  Once the incoming mail is tamed, I'll work on the old messages.  (I don't think I'll need that free-shipping code from June 2006.)

The Bottom Line:  Not every chapter in Pretty Neat applies to me:  our family schedules are well-coordinated and I don't have a work environment to keep neat.  Some of the tips were not new to me, but many were.  Still, the concept of defining what "imperfect organization" looks like to me and setting that as a standard is more than enough to recommend this book to anyone with similar struggles.

Links for more information:
Would you like to win a copy of Pretty Neat:  The Buttoned-Up Way to Get Organized and Let Go of Perfection?  This time there's a bonus.  Not only will one winner receive a copy of Pretty Neat, but one winner will be chosen at random from across all participating blogs to receive a $200 gift card (same as cash such as Visa or AmEx) plus a selection of Buttoned Up products (ARV: $50) to be used towards her own reasonable organizational goals for her life.

This giveaway is closed.

How to enter:  Leave a comment and tell me the area of your home or life that has become the biggest source of organizational stress.  Be sure to leave a way for me to contact you. Limit 1 entry by this method. This must be done in order to qualify for extra entries.

Here's how you can earn additional entries (please leave one comment per entry):
More details: Open to residents of USA, age 18 or older. No P.O. Box addresses. Giveaway ends 3/21/11 at noon (Eastern time). Winner will be chosen by the random number generator at Random.org. Winner will be contacted by email and must claim the prize within 48 hours, or another winner will be chosen. Prize will be provided by the sponsor.  Void where prohibited.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book, at no cost to me, for review purposes.  All opinions in this post are my own.  By participating in this campaign I will be entered for a chance to win a gift card (same as cash) plus a selection of Buttoned Up products (ARV: $50).  I learned about this opportunity through my membership in Global Influence Network.

24 comments :

  1. My pantry, Master bedroom, and garage are all in great need! laughwithusblog at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is kinda strange because I have actually been going through and unsubscribing to lists that I never read. I feel kinda bad but it has made my email inbox a little neater. I don't have a lot of different email accounts but the ones I do have are becoming more manageable.

    ReplyDelete
  3. My biggest source of organizational stress is paperwork--I am drowning in it.
    slrdowney at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I like the Up & Out Labels for girls and boys downloadable forms.
    slrdowney at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  5. My biggest organizational stress is my email--It fills up as fast as I can deal with it!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love the downloadable forms--The Birthday party checklist is great!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I signed up for the newsletter.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I commented on your roller coaster post.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I commented on your Sign of the Covenant post.

    ReplyDelete
  10. The area that gives me most stress: my desk and coupons.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  11. I signed up for Buttoned Up e-mails.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  12. Their form that would help me the most: Master Goals.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  13. Actually, my books are in need of organizing.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  14. My kitchen counter is a disaster.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  15. I hate my garage right now.
    And my storage room. I would LOVE for them to be organized.

    taffy.lovell@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. for me it's pictures..i have some developed, some in the camera and very few in albums
    nannypanpan at sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
  17. My bedroom is probably the worst-organized place for me. I just don't have room for everything, and I often just throw it anywhere rather than dealing with the clutter.
    ruthaw_1974@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  18. like buttoned up on facebook
    ruthhill74

    ReplyDelete
  19. The kid's password form would help me.
    ruthaw_1974@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. mail piles up for me! thank you!


    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  21. following get buttoned up on twitter

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  22. Receipts need organization!

    delilah0180(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Twitter follower of buttonedup, same name!

    delilah0180(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  24. Holiday gift ideas form would be very useful!

    delilah0180(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete

ShareThis