Have you ever heard of the Mind Styles Model by Anthony Gregorc? Basically, there are four personality or learning “styles”: Abstract, Concrete, Random, and Sequential (and various combinations of these four). In our home, we have an abstract/random and a concrete/sequential person living under the same roof. You can’t get more opposite than that. To make matters worse, I am the abstract/random and my hubby is the organized one. I know this defies all stereotypical norms, but that’s the way it is.
Jerry is very precise and organized. A few years ago, he took some tools, drove out to our land, and built a house … alone … by himself … after working a regular forty hour work week. His style allows him to do those kinds of things. Mine does not! I couldn’t create straight lines and matching corners if you paid me (a lot!). I’m more apt to be found art journaling, collaging, or making up recipes, all while creating the hugest messes you have ever seen.
Our closet is a visual representation of our household. There is a line of demarcation down the middle. Jerry’s side is pristine. All the long sleeved shirts are together and all his short sleeved ones are next to them. All the hangers and clothes are facing the same way and there are neat stacks of Tees and jeans on the top shelf.
MY side of the closet has the same organizational style of a garbage dump. Shirts, sweaters and pants are intermixed with my mom’s wedding gown, a polyester prom dress from the 70’s and a cross stitch sampler hanging on a pants hanger (for no apparent reason). My shelf has jeans from every era, a bathing suit I bought but have never even tried on (who knows when I’ll need to suddenly jet to the Bahamas) and a big box of assorted candles. That’s what random people do, we mix random stuff together.
The beauty of our closet is that it also represents the huge strides we’ve made in coexisting in our own crazy form of harmony. At the beginning of our marriage there were lots of arguments. LOTS! We were both so sure our way was the right way. I wanted him to loosen up and he wanted me to clean up! It turns out that we were both right (which is so often the case).
Now, I love that Jerry’s things are always in a certain place. It makes it so much easier for me to find them, use them, and then NOT put them back (I also like to sneak into the closet and move his clothes around just to annoy him). Whenever anything technical needs to be done in a very precise manner, Jerry is my go-to-guy. I need him in my life.
I, on the other hand, help Jerry see the humor and fun in life. At times, he probably feels his life with me is a twirly, spinning carnival ride. But, it’s a ride he chooses to ride again and again and he’s learned to love the way it makes him feel.
So, where do you fit on the Mind Styles Model? Are you Abstract/Random like me? Or Concrete/Sequential like Jerry? Are your closets wonders of organizational achievement? Or wonders of the Laws of Gravity? I’d love to see your pictures of your style in action!