Did you know that your socks actually want to be neatly folded, and not twisted into a lumpy sock-ball? If you’re like me, you’ve been abusing your socks since you started washing towels with garments (because like me, you just can’t be bothered). You didn’t even know they even cared to be treated better, most likely for the obvious reason that I used to justify sock-balling: they’re inanimate pieces of fabric.
I’m sure at one point my own mother instructed me to put two socks together, then fold one sock down over the other and voila, a sock ball. I’m sure she recommended that I mate socks that were actually a pair but let’s face it, that was usually impossible since one had usually disappeared into an alternate universe where mateless socks live out their days. At any rate, employing this mating method ensured they couldn’t escape and join the mayhem that was my underwear drawer. I used to wake up each morning and pull their worn out forms over my feet, one checkered and one dull black, never even knowing that their depression at having been so chronically mistreated was actually seeping through the soles of my feet and into my mental state.
If you’re anything like me, and you start treating your socks better, you’ll discover that it’s an easy way to dissolve that kind mental anguish that crops up seemingly without reason.
It’s symbolic. It’s about self-care.
Retrieving a real pair of lovingly folded socks gives me a sense of power in my morning routine that it infects my work morning, giving me the gusto to clean up my inbox, and for good. It makes me want to make celery carrot juice.
And it hasn’t stopped with the socks. For the first time ever in my life, I am folding my underwear and bras. I even separated out my granny panties from my lacy ones. My one-piece lingerie garments are no longer entangled with other useless items. Belts go there, and hosiery goes here in this protective nylon bag. No longer do I have to rummage through my hosiery hoping that I find just one pair without runs or holes. I now open my drawer to find only pristine hosiery.
If you only knew how I’ve spent my entire adult life organizing my underwear drawer, you would understand the significance of this step. My complete lack of organization has caused me years of subtle misery.
Take my most previous undergarments organization method: all undergarments went indiscriminately into one, misshapen IKEA cardboard box, which I also utilized for outdated belts, camping towels, extreme-cold mittens, sun hats, halloween accessories, and a sequined scarf that I couldn’t part ways with because my grandma gave it to me. Retrieving a pair of underwear that I didn’t loath was somedays like searching for the lost ark. Since then, I’ve thrown out underwear that I loathe. And socks without matches? They go directly into the trash. No raggedy garments and mateless socks live here anymore.
This post was inspired by professional organizer Maria Condo, who wrote the book “The Life-Changing Art of Tidying Up“. If you suspect that organizing your life could do amazing things with your mental landscape, you should really read it.