Neat freak: Meet Jessica Ye Organizing isn't a chore, it's a hobby

Organizing her markers and pens by color, freshman Jessica Ye puts them in their individual piles. “[My friends] were surprised when they saw me organizing,” Ye said. “At first, they just looked at me like I grew a second head or something, but they said they thought it was a healthy hobby, so they were cool with it.” Photo Credit: Jessica Ye

This profile was created by Journalism I student Jayden Licanto.

The R&B song ends just as freshman Jessica Ye places her last marker with a group of purple writing utensils. She smiles in satisfaction at her work and goes to grab an empty pencil holder after finishing organizing her office supplies. Ye places every group neatly into separate jars and feels a sense of accomplishment as she admires her work.

Organizing pencils and markers would be a tedious activity for many other students, but for Ye, it’s one of her favorite things to do.

“I saw that my house was super dirty, and everything was out of place,” Ye said. “So, I just wanted to make everything more organized and have the same things be in the same places and not have everything all over the place.”

Ye didn’t know much about what it meant to organize since she was too young to comprehend what she was doing. Unlike how other children would just place items back where they should be, Ye tried her best to make them straight and facing the right direction.

“I didn’t have much to do as a kid, so organizing passed the time,” Ye said. “Even when I was young, it was refreshing to see the house clean.” 

She doesn’t have a particular thing that she likes to organize, but anything that needs to look clean motivates her. 

“The thing I always organize is my closet because I always have clothes to put away, and it’s kind of just in my weekend schedule now,” Ye said. “That’s just how I’ve been maintaining my hobby because it’s not like there’s much to organize when you’ve been doing this for ten years.”

Although cleaning her house’s whole second floor was an unusual thing for her to organize, this wasn’t the strangest thing she organized. Food is the weirdest thing she had ever organized.

“I noticed the pantry was kind of messy, so I just started taking things out and throwing them away or placing them in different piles,” Ye said. “There was some weird stuff in there, and I think I did the fridge once, too.”

Because she doesn’t organize often, it’s hard to persist in her hobby, so she tries to find time to organize at least one thing. Fortunately, she finds time to organize during school.

“It’s especially useful in my program area,” Ye said. ‘We have to do sketches, and at first, it was hard even trying to figure out how to organize them because I had no idea what we were learning. Let’s just say I wasn’t very in order the first couple of weeks (of school).”=

Organizing has greatly benefited her when she’s planning outfits and learning about different types of fabrics, as a fashion student. Along with organizing helping her in school, it also makes her mom happy when she does it at home.

“When I first started organizing, my mother was very proud of me,” Ye said. “I didn’t even understand why she was so pleased. I was just happy to get the attention from her because I love affection from anybody.”

Although, she understands why people find organizing boring, she does try to convince her friends to give her hobby a try.

“When people ask ‘why do you like organizing?’ I like to respond with ‘why not’ because organizing isn’t really that bad,” Ye said. “They just have to give it a try.”