Stuck in the middle
I looked up the word "entropy". "Order to disorder in an isolated system", is the natural way things go. Weeds grow in a garden. People fill the natural gap. Life is a bit like Tetris. The only way to get through, is to avoid entropy by actually doing something.

My garden is a wild thing. It grows in the Spring in glorious confusion. If I just let it grow, it gets rank. The plants fight for space and soon unhappiness emerges in dead plants, ant and cricket chaos, and leaves perforated by snails. I think that the garden wants care. This is because it is a garden. It is not part of nature.

Natural things happen on a grander scale. As soon as man imposes some order on the system, art emerges. Art is contrived. The snail trail on the wall is not art, it's a snail trail. The art is in the cleaning.

So Nature and Art are not aligned. My garden knows this. It tries its best to go natural. Snakes move into the pool pump-house, A dassie inhabits a boat, weeds grow in the paving, and creepers pop the house number off the wall. I need to remind the garden that it's a garden. There is a certain delight in disorder and I am a great fan of that. The trick is; how much disorder and where?

In a garden it's easy. The best value, for time spent, is in the lawn and edges. Wild beds are great if they know their boundaries. Trimming by the square metre is quick and easy, so first comes the lawn mower and then the careful edging. Much better. It's like a haircut and a shave. Raking and clearing is next. This has two important functions. It gets rid of the grass and edge trimmings, but secondly it shows the garden that you are caring and interested. It's like showering after a haircut. You feel cleaner, but you also feel the water everywhere and get an overall impression on what's what.

Everywhere is what makes a gardener. Speed raking is a cathartic technique that puts one in touch with the garden and could almost replace psychology as a therapeutic device. Running a rake over beds, and all corners of the yard, helps one see what is really going on. It gets the naughty creepers out, reveals the ants under the leaves, and tells you which direction the mole will head next.

Then comes the prioritising. Things need space to grow. You can't overcrowd them and you can't let them sort it out themselves. They will, but it takes too much time. That's nature. So it needs controlling. Take the key plants, take a hoe and make a 1/4 metre gap around them. Immediately everything important is carefully defined. Your entire garden looks like its been gardened and you know where everything is. This isn't really about the details; It's just defining priorities.

Details are next. They are really an extension of definition. Important things stand out either through height, extent, or focus. Unimportant things must either be levelled, downsized, or hidden. Trim it lower, Cut it to size, or, remove it. A garden will soon get the idea and start to play along. It's about discipline really.

Only once you've defined the area can you start to decide what's in and what's out. Unless you are making a new garden, the method outlined above is the most sensible. It's also quite a good analogy for tidying up one's life. Think about it.
Deal with the most obvious in terms of tidying and boundaries. Trim the most obvious excess. Create space and clearly define areas. Tidy up.
Assess everything. Look in all the corners. touch everything in your life, See the big picture. Stand back or remove the things blocking the view, but look everywhere.
Define the important. Place them in priority, easy to reach places. Make them stand out. Touch them.
Ignore, remove and discard the unnecessary. Then it won't eat up your time .
Your life is not natural. It's art. From the day you were born, your thinking made you a major player in the garden of desire. Sorry, you'll have to live with it. Any problems in your life are probably because of your gardening techniques. Difficult plants can be hard to manage. Decide to keep them, or let them go. Decide what will replace them. Occasionally a wombat will jump the fence and eat your broccoli patch, but generally its all containable and controllable. It will all grow on its own and that's the greatest thing about life and gardens. You really don't have to do much. Just plant, trim and control.

Perhaps you have a immensely complicated, detailed, garden that demands all your time, money, and energy. Perhaps you have a wild garden with nettles and ivy. It's your choice really. Take a look at it and before confusion sets in, remember the steps above.

If it feels too difficult, then go into an actual garden and start with that. You'll quickly see what I mean.

Author's Bio: 

George is a trainer and writer from sunny South Africa. Whilst dealing with an unruly garden he also tackles life and brings his knowledge to Events, marketing and corporate and personal strategies.