Become a Creature of Habit

By Doug Ankerman

April’s theme of “Staying Organized” draws a collective “yeah right, when pigs fly” from most.

Adding your multiple sclerosis to the mix makes it even more overwhelming.

So, I say let’s break it down into something smaller. Something attainable. And simply become a “creature of habit.”

By that I mean make it a habit of putting your stuff in the same place every day.

Form a new habit - always put your wallet in the same placeHere on the counter is where I place my car keys, wallet, glasses, and phone when I come home. By putting everything in one spot it becomes easy to remember and quick to grab when dashing out the door.

Less aggravation trying to find car keys means less stress. Less stress means less MS. And less MS means a happier you.

You can become a creature of habit with other stuff, too.

Put the TV remote in the same place. Nothing is more aggravating to me than walking twenty feet back and forth and around trying to find the clicker for a TV that is only six feet away!

Do the same with your book or magazine. And pen and paper to jot a quick message.

Put your shoes where you can easily find them. Your jacket, as well.

Become a creature of habit yourself by putting things in the same pockets. My phone goes in the left front pocket. Keys and change in the right front. Wallet in the back-right side.

Speaking of wallets… and purses too, always put what’s important in the same place that is easy to find.

Form a habit - keep everything in your wallet in the same placeNothing is more stressful than being at the register digging to find a credit card while a long line of shoppers waits behind you.

Don’t let the thought of getting organized overwhelm you. Simplify the process by becoming a creature of habit. Put your stuff in the same place every day.

It’s all about making life easier. Worry-free. ESPECIALLY when you have multiple sclerosis.

Besides, the idea of pigs flying is as crazy as, well, being organized.

*An MSer since 1996, Doug puts a funny spin on MS and other subjects on his blog at

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The Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) is a national nonprofit organization and leading resource for the entire MS community, improving lives today through vital services and support. MSAA provides free programs and services, such as: a Helpline with trained specialists; award-winning publications, including, The Motivator; MSAA’s nationally recognized website, featuring educational videos, webinars, and research updates; a mobile phone app, My MS Manager™; safety and mobility equipment products; cooling accessories for heat-sensitive individuals; MRI funding; My MSAA Community, a peer-to-peer online support forum; MS Conversations blog; a clinical trial search tool; podcasts; and more. For additional information, please visit or call (800) 532-7667.

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