Episode 17: Nature versus Nurture

In my graduate class this semester, the discussion lately has been about organization of files, particularly on websites. (The class is called “Studies in Digital Media” and you think that should go on my reasons I’m a nerd list, too.) One of the students posted this in the forum: “By nature, I’m not a particularly organized person.”

This got me to wondering if organization is determined by nature or nurture. Does an organized person have the innate quality to put their bills into folders and not have the “to be filed” bin? Or does an organized person have the experience of watching their parent actually sort the mail every day instead of letting it pile on the piano in the front room?

Either my tabula rasa was written on by one parent (who is unorganized) and I kept erasing anything the other parent tried to write (who is organized), or I didn’t have a chance because I came into this world unorganized.

And to think… when I was finishing my undergraduate degree, I was working full-time as a secretary, filing all of the documentation for the IT department. Ha.

This brings me to discussing work. When I was the secretary (back in the making-the-really-mediocre-bucks days) my desk was always piled with paperwork to file. And to add to the fun, the desk NEXT to me wasn’t occupied when I first started so they filled THAT ONE with more paperwork and boxes. Yippee.

I was then asked to attend lots of meetings to take minutes and then write up those minutes and email them to all parties involved. Plus, I was in charge of changes to some portions of the company’s intranet as well as building new clients into our computer system. Of course, I could continue with my little list of things to do, but what really matters is that all of the items on that list I could easily put as something I’d rather do. Come on. WHO WANTS TO FILE?

Fridays became filing days.

It was a MEAN thing that I did to myself. Wouldn’t you rather enjoy your Fridays? Even if you have to spend at least eight hours of them at work?
When I transferred out of the secretary position (after five LONG months), I happily left Filing Fridays behind.

I’m looking around my desk today and see only four packets that need to be filed. Let me tell you: it’s good to not be a secretary. I just wasn’t born with that filing gene nor did anybody try and nurture the filing seed within me.

On the other hand, I DEFINITELY have the type-really-fast gene as well as a well-nurtured, appreciate-two-large-monitors seed.

Now if only I could afford to hire a personal secretary to file my bills, taxes, English papers, and love notes at home. I keep ALL my love notes; no facetiousness in THAT statement.

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