Get Organized!

Get Organized!

Together with spring cleaning, is the sometimes never-ending battle to ‘get organized.’ Often more easily said than done, getting organized is the key to a happy home. To help you get started, here are eight strategies from professional organizers that will hopefully help you fight the good fight!

Find a place for every item. One big reason things collect on counters, tables, and floors is that they have no home. Storing items away in the room they're used will help ensure they get put away when you’re finished using it. If it's something frequently used, make sure the storage place is easy to access. 

Be a clutter cop. The better you are about keeping items out of your home, the less likely these things will pile up in your home. For example: Freebies. While it's nice to get a free T-shirt or coffee mug, will you ever use it? Really? If the answer is no – then don’t take it. It’s up to you to block unneeded items before they come through the front door.

Find the problem – not the symptom. Now and again, scan your home for clutter hot spots. Figure out why certain items accumulate there. For example: Dishes in your sink. It is assumed that dishes pile up because it's too much work to load the dishwasher. Many times, this occurs because family members hate unloading the dishwasher - they hate having to open the cabinet to an avalanche of other plastic containers just to put away more plastic containers. Maybe you need fewer plastic containers…just a thought!

Resist the urge to go container shopping. People often think the solution to reduce clutter is to buy more organizing products. They head out to the nearest container store for boxes, bins and baskets. Don’t fall for it. Getting organized starts with a plan to declutter – not a storage bin.

Eliminate duplicates duplicates. Do you need three nonstick spatulas? Six hairbrushes or 10 coffee mugs? Eliminating duplicates is one of the easiest and quickest ways to reduce clutter. 

Weed out that wardrobe. Do you frequently wear all the clothes in your closet? If you can look at a clothing item and NOT answer the following: When is the last time you wore it? When is the next time you’ll wear it? Chances are – it’s time to call a charity for a pickup. As a guide, consider the 80:20 rule: we wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time. Be honest with yourself - don't hold onto clothes that you think you might need (or fit into) someday. 

Make a schedule and stick to it. Some of your spaces, like kitchen counters, need daily de-cluttering. Others can be handled weekly or monthly. So, when that time comes, be systematic: Take all the items in a designated area and spread them out so you can see what you've got. If you're thinning out the junk drawer where you keep kitchen utensils, place them on the counter, and sort into two piles: utensils you use regularly and those you don't use. For everything else – open the trash can or call a charity. Be patient – when done right, organization can take time.


Don’t be embarrassed about your clutter – we all have clutter at some point. Remember that organizing doesn’t need to be perfect or happen all at once. Start small – the decluttering journey of a thousand miles or a thousand spatulas, starts with one step.

 

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