Organize Me!

Start Small.

Just take one little baby step toward your organizational goal. Perhaps today it is a drawer or a cabinet.

Three Steps to Organize Any Space

1. Empty 

Simply clear the space of all its contents.  If you are working with a very large space you can do this step in segments, working only with a given section of the room.

2. Sort and Purge

Decision Time! If you don’t love it or use it, toss it! Less really is More. Clutter creates physical and mental clutter. Your sort piles may include:

“Trash”

“Shred”

“Donate”

“Sell”

“Relocate”

“Belongs Here”

3. Replace

Put all the items that you love and use back into the space and you are finished!

Store Items Where You Use Them

I call this concept “First Point of Use.”  Storing items near where you use them, saves time, effort, energy and perhaps even sanity. Well, let’s just say, it keeps things simple and I like simplicity!

Years ago, I was visiting a family member and I simply could not find the trash bags because they were stored 6 feet away from the trash can, on the other side of the kitchen. I shared the “store-it-where-you-use-it” idea and the bags were relocated closer to their first point of use, saving steps and saving time.

More recently, I was organizing for a client that was seeking kitchen/pantry organization.  As I observed how the family used/returned items, it became clear that the cereal boxes needed to be stored directly at the pantry entrance, as opposed to the very back. This offered ease of use for the kids to quickly grab and return the boxes.

A Place for Everything and Everything in its Place.

Once you have identified where items belong, work as a team to put everything back where it belongs immediately after use.  At my house, I frequently say “clean and clear” which means “put everything where it belongs, we’re about to eat dinner.”  Do it daily; do it together! Don’t assume all the responsibility for your home’s organization, it robs your children of learned responsibility. Get them involved; delegate!

Paperwork.

Paperwork is quite possibly the greatest organizational need. If your paper has accumulated, go through each item and begin sorting it into categories. This is important because you must purge before you file. I suggest obtaining a large file cabinet and storing it where the paper is generated, if possible. Create your filing system based on the categories you’ve sorted your paper into. Once you get a handle on your paper, implement a system to stay on top of your incoming paper. File daily or weekly. Set weekly shred times (i.e. every Tuesday evening).

Living in chaos can be overwhelming! But living a life of order can be freeing! You CAN do it!