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25 Signs That You’re A Born Organizer

You can always tell a natural-born PO. You know what I’m talking about — the kind who started color-coding while in diapers, who took a label-maker with her to preschool, and who knew how to categorize before she could walk. Now it’s time to channel that innate anal-retentiveness into a successful career!

My college roommates realized that I was destined for the organized life years before I had any clue. (That ruler-drawn household chore chart must have given me away!) Of course, they also thought it was a great prank to put every pair of my shoes in the wrong labeled boxes and turn all my beautifully-aligned cans in the pantry upside-down — bastards! You never want to take yourself too seriously in this industry. So for a laugh, I’ve assembled this oh-so-true-if-somewhat-exaggerated list of characteristics we all share:

  1. You hung Barbie’s clothes according to season and purpose as a child.
  2. You create lists of things you’ve already done so you can cross them off.
  3. Your magazines are arranged in the rack by subject and date.
  4. You draw up a daily schedule for your pets.
  5. You plan (and prepare) an entire month’s worth of meals at a time.
  6. You divide that bag of M&Ms up according to color before eating them.
  7. You straighten the tray of dental tools while getting your teeth cleaned.
  8. Your first action in a hotel room is putting everything “where it belongs.”
  9. You’ve never owned a Tupperware tub with a missing lid in your life.
  10. You create mind maps and flow charts in your sleep.
  11. You carry a spare label-maker with you in case the main one breaks.
  12. You show up at every meeting with a three-page checklist of questions.
  13. You leave every meeting with a half-dozen pages of (indexed) notes.
  14. Your personal library is organized by genre, sub-genre, author, and
  15. Your kids’ coloring books are arranged by dominant hue.
  16. You have an organizational system for the magnets on your fridge.
  17. Your mom never got a chance to tell you to go clean up your room.
  18. Your socks are lined up in neat little rows in your dresser drawer.
  19. You schedule your day down to what time you’ll brush and floss.
  20. The staff at The Container Store greet you like “Norm” from
  21. You realign the cans and boxes on supermarket shelves as you shop.
  22. You can retrieve any of your 5th grade book reports in 30 seconds or less.
  23. You record the purchase of a 35-cent pack of gum in Quicken.
  24. Even your piles of clutter are categorized and labeled.
  25. Your spices are alphabetized and arranged by country of origin.
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Ramona Creel is an award-winning 15-year veteran organizer and member of the National Association Of Professional Organizers. As well as having birthed “The A-To-Z Of Getting Organized,” Ramona is also the author of “The Professional Organizer’s Bible: A Slightly Irreverent And Completely Unorthodox Guide For Turning Clutter Into A Career”—and the creator of more than 200 “quick-start” business tools and templates for use by productivity professionals. She writes seven different blogs, has worked with hundreds of clients, and has delivered scores of presentations on getting organized. Ramona resides on the roads of America as a full-time RVer—living and working in a 29-foot Airstream. Learn more at and RamonaCreel.com.

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