Two Types of Disorganization

Did you know there are actually two types of disorganization – situational and chronic? Could one fit you?

Situational disorganization happens when a life event causes a “hiccup” in our normally organized lives. It is often something that happens occasionally (marriage, moving), or for a short period of time (accident recovery, night classes). With a little extra planning and help, situational disorganization can be readily dealt with.

Chronic disorganization is defined by the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization (NSGCD) as “…having a past history of disorganization in which self-help efforts to change have failed, an undermining of current quality of life due to disorganization, and the expectation of future disorganization.” The causes of this type of disorganization may include physical disabilities, emotional upheavals or mental disorders . Successfully dealing with chronic disorganization can be a lengthy process and include the help of family, friends and professionals.

**More detailed information can be found at the NSGCD website, Click on the Fact Sheet link for free information downloads. Also check out the Clutter Hoarding Scale.

The best way to start dealing with any type of disorganization is by analyzing the problem. How did it happen? Can it be easily put back in order? Do I need help? What kind of help do I need? How do I make the time to deal with it?

If you find that you need help, a web search for Professional Organizers should turn up a few in your area. The National Association of Professional Organizers ( and the NSGCD ( both have automated referral searches.

If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could then better judge what to do, and how to do it.
Abraham Lincoln

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