The Story of the Grunions

By Regina Leeds, The Zen Organizer
NABBW’s Organizational Skills Expert

Grunions are small fish who appear once a year off California beaches. It is possible to catch them in containers the way children back East might capture fireflies in a jar.

Many years ago a friend of mine told me this story. “When I was 18 I took a girl to my high school prom in my father\’s brand new Cadillac. After the prom my date wanted to go to the beach and capture grunions.

Like any dutiful 18 year old boy, I took her and we quickly scored a bag of the tiny fish. We tucked the treasure into the glove compartment of my father\’s car.

There were several stops before the night ended and you can guess what happened. The grunions were forgotten! Within two weeks the unmistakable stench of dead fish emanated from the glove compartment. Needless to say, my father almost killed me!”

Now what does this have to do with your piles of papers or your messy closet? Everything! My friend was a therapist and used this story to illustrate the importance of dealing with our emotional issues. “If you don\’t,” he would say, “they\’ll fester like the unseen, rotting fish and have a profound effect on your life.”

Piles of messy clothes and stacks of untended papers will swirl their chaotic energy around you like an evil spell.

It will be difficult to think clearly. You will feel mildly depressed when you\’re in your home or work environment. It will be hard to work there whether your task is washing dishes or drafting contracts.

What\’s behind your chaos?

Regina Leeds, the Zen Organizer, is the author of eight books on the subject of getting organized. Her book, One Year to An Organized Life has been chosen as Book of the Quarter by Fedex. In June, it will go into displays in 7,500 FedEx locations across the country. One Year to an Organized Life with Baby is her newest book. Read more about The Zen Organizer at www.reginaleeds.com.