I’m going to blame all the books I have on my list to read for being on hold at the library and then I started searching for something else because I really couldn’t go another month without reading a self-improvement book. (This was also back in October 2018 when I initially read this book. That was how I found this gem.)
Anyone who looks at my room will tell you at once that it is both highly organized and cluttered with this or that. I know where 89% of my stuff is and the 11% I don’t is in a new place within the last week. I haven’t adjusted to the new location yet. My walls have art and graphics and are nothing like a minimalist space. But I have nothing extra on the floor. I have decorative boxes holding mementos from places that I no longer live (This distraction will make more sense with next month’s book.)
That’s my need for clean.
Reading this book was a reminder that I’m not totally off track. Sure I delay things far longer than I should because of a deep fear of rejection. Blame it on high school and my childhood.
Because I like seeing where my projects take me. It’s amazing to see what I’ll make next, though the months of October to December do include a lot of Christmas present making going on. But what happens when I sit down and paint the chair I bought at a thrift store instead of writing an article?
Is that a bad thing?
Considering painting the chair had been on my task list for four months and the article two–not so much. But am I actually using the chair now?
Yes. You want to know something else cool? I have fewer things sitting on my to-do list so I’m sitting down and actually writing an article (or 6 posts) rather than beating myself up for not getting all my things done.
There’s a specific part in the book that caught my attention. He was discussing how team harmony isn’t’ worth the sale that people give it. The true growth measure is goal harmony. It’s about being in the same direction, not always on the same path. How else are we supposed to problem solve?
Messy: The Power of Disorder to Transform Our Lives by Tim Harford is backed with science and riddled with historical examples of people getting into a mess and fixing the mess without cleaning it up first.
I don’t write these reviews to talk about the book too much. I write about what I got out of it. Because no one reads the exact same book. The words are the same but each of our experiences change each word to a different timbre and the way each word sounds in our heads while we read makes a concerto no one else will hear.
This book was a validation of sorts. It was a piece that told me that my aversion to minimalism wasn’t wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t need things. I like experiences as much as the next person. But I am a kinesthetic learner. I touch and see and hear all the things in my life. I forget memories I’ve embedded into an object until I touch it. Sure, there are the pieces that I knew were there. But every once in a while I get something my brother did when we were younger, a face I haven’t thought of in years. I get an explanation for something I didn’t understand years ago. I have learned more from my distractions and my sidetracking than I have from the plans I made for myself.
When I was younger I loved doing word searches. I would get stuck on words as I went down the list of things to find. After a while I would move on, eventually, it became a set minute. And soon after I’d moved onto the next word on the list. You know what I would find? That word I couldn’t find before. Sometimes I’d have six of them and suddenly in 30 seconds, I would be further along because I’d decided not to waste a lot of time when I got stuck.
I wish I’d been doing this trick the last decade. Shit, it’s been a decade of being an adult. Of making decisions that would affect my life for several years if not the rest of it.
But the mess has been the best part of it.
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Side Note: Ten years ago, I didn’t know any of my best friends. I also didn’t have a driver’s license either.