Well, hi there! Happy Friday! If you’re like me this Spring weather has you ready to declutter. What is it about the change in the seasons that really brings that out in us? I don’t know, but I sure am ready! So I wanted to share a few organization tips for you as you start to tackle any of your spring-cleaning and organizing projects over the weekend. There are only 4 and honestly, once I started sticking to them it was an organizational-game-changer so to speak. It makes it so easy to keep everything tidy and helps with my mental well being so much! There’s something about a messy space that also makes my brain feel messy. So, without further ado:
4 Organization Ideas for the Home
1. Don’t keep stuff you don’t need. Seriously, just don’t. I know it can feel hard to part ways with your things for many reasons. Maybe it’s reminding you of the person you used to be and still kind of want to be (hi jeans from college that haven’t fit in 5 years), or maybe you really loved it at one time, or maybe you just think you should use it or want it and so you keep it around just in case. Whatever the reason, you’ll feel about a thousand times better when you shed all that dead weight. Yes, it would be fabulous to fit into those college jeans again, but do you really need them in your closet taunting you every time you get dressed? No. I promise you it will be incredibly liberating once you say sayonara. And all those things you loved years ago, well it’s not a crime that you don’t love them any more. Our tastes change and evolve along with us. And chances are that thing you don’t love anymore is just taking up the precious space that things you DO love could be using. Oh, and those things you’re willing yourself to like or use. It’s okay. Whatever the reason (it was expensive, it was a gift, it is sentimental) having anything in your house that you don’t love just isn’t worth it. And it’s really hard to make your home your favorite place when you have a bunch of stuff lying around that you don’t even like. And I’m not saying you have to throw everything away. You could donate, or sell it and make some extra cash, or give it to a friend you know would appreciate it. However it will feel best to you. Just get it out. And you know what, if you’re on a roll and just want to trash it all, don’t worry I won’t tell anyone!
2. Make it easy. Now that you’ve freed yourself of the stuff that you don’t want, like, or need it’s time to think about systems for organizing your home. And you know what, there is no silver bullet. There’s not a system that works for every single person. We’re all different. And how we interact with the world is different, so it makes sense that we won’t all approach this the same way. However, the one universal truth I can tell you is that if it’s not easy you won’t stick with it. And I mean really easy. When you’re coming up with a plan about where to put all your mail instead of the kitchen counter in the way of everything a 10 step process isn’t going to cut it. No matter how “easy” you try and convince yourself it is. Your system needs to be so easy that it’s something you can do with your eyes closed. It’s autopilot. You don’t have to think about it. For instance, when I get the mail I go through all of it and throw away any junk. I leave out anything that needs to be dealt with immediately (which is very rare). And, then I have a folder in the desk where all bills go. We accumulate everything until the end of the month when we pay anything that’s not auto drafting, review important documents, and file it away. The daily process takes no more than 3 minutes and the once a month bill pay session take an hour or less. And that’s because I keep my files clear and easy to get to. As soon as I have to use all my might to cram a paper in there I know it’s time to get rid of some things. Because that’s a prefect example of make it easy. If it’s not easy to file your papers – you won’t do it. I mean of course! Who likes wrestling the filing cabinet just to put away bills? No one. But, when your files are organized in a way that makes sense to you and are easy to access it takes hardly any time at all.
3. Give everything a place. This last tip goes hand-in-hand with the other two. Every single thing should have a dedicated space. Because I can tell you first hand that when it doesn’t it doesn’t get put away. I had the best of intentions, but when I couldn’t find a space for something in our studio apartment I would tell myself “I’ll figure it out later.” Ha! How cute. That pretty much never worked. If I couldn’t find a place for it when I actually dedicated the time to cleaning and organizing why in the world did I think I could do it at the end of the work day when I’m tired and still have to figure out dinner and do 10 other things. Part of making it easy for yourself is making sure everything has a place.
4. Follow the 15-minute rule. This means that you spend about 15 minutes every day tiding up. At this point you don’t have any extra clutter, everything has its place, and you’ve made your systems easy to follow. So, if you give yourself 15 minutes everyday to tidy up the house you’ll be able to make significant progress. I like to do it at the beginning of the day. I make the bed, put away my PJs, put away any stray items around the house, put away any dishes, and straighten up the living room from the night before so everything is neat and organized from the very beginning. And now that I do this I pretty much never encounter those days where I have to spend hours picking up the house anymore, because most of it is dealt with already. And the best part is: because you’re only spending 15 minutes doing it, it’s fairly painless!
So, cheers to another spring weekend, and I hope if you find your self with the itch to get your house organized and that these tips can help you!