“For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned,” said Benjamin Franklin.
Considering this quote allegedly came from the same man who also declared that “a penny saved is a penny earned,” I would guess that time saved is as valuable (if not more so) than money saved. The numbers are more favorable, at least.
How much time does being organized really save you? Consider these studies and statistics:
- An average American will spend about 16 minutes a day looking for lost items—which adds up to an entire year during a lifetime.
- In the book The Overload Syndrome, author Richard Swenson details how the average desk worker spends three hours each week searching for documents, sorting piles, and figuring out which project to start next.
- From the Wall Street Journal: “The average U.S. executive wastes 6 weeks per year searching for missing information in messy desks and files.”
- The Association of Realtors suggests that first-impression improvements, such as cleared counters and de-cluttered closets, are the best way to speed up the sale of a home.
- The following three statistics are from the National Association of Professional Organizers (LINK: http://www.napo.net/):
- Almost one quarter of all adults say that they are late in paying their bills—incurring a late fee—because they could not find them.
- “So-called ‘crisis’ purchases or fees related to disorganization can cost as much as 15-20% of your annual budget including buying duplicates of misplaced or broken items, last minute shopping at higher prices and extra interest and finance charges.”
- According to cleaning professionals, organization would cut down 40% of your cleaning time.
Time Spent Organizing is More Time Gained
Benjamin Franklin had it right (surprised? me, neither). The time you spend de-cluttering your home, office and life and getting it organized is time PLUS gained. Look back at the statistics above and add up all of that time wasted searching for misplaced items. Consider all of the money spent on late fees, duplicate purchases, and extra cleaning fees.
You’ll be saving pennies (therein “earning” pennies), and you’ll be gaining HOURS, even years. So, get to it. Clean up, clean out, store it, and revel in your cleaner, more organized life.
How much time do you think you will save when you don’t have to look for the remote control? Are you a clutter-er or procrastinator? What are some tips you have learned that save time by organizing?