Becoming organized doesn’t have to take over your life the way clutter can. Take these seven steps and watch your home transform. Before you start, be sure to give yourself enough time to organize at least one clutter zone.
Make a plan
Answer the following questions and you’ll start to hash out a plan.
Why is this spot as cluttered as it is?
Does everyone in the house use the area as a dumping ground?
How can I change my habits to make this space work better?
How long will it take to organize the space?
Identify problem zones
Problem zones can be anywhere in your home from the entryway to the attic crawl space. They are simply places that have too much clutter.
Problems can be shoe piles, stacks of mail or clothing in a heap. Also trouble spots can be drawers and closets that won’t open or when you do open them, they’re so full you can’t find anything in there. They can be behind closed doors or right out in the open.
Take everything out
Before working in an area, it’s important to take out everything, clean the space and then go from there. Work on one section at a time. If it’s a dresser drawer, dump out the drawer. If it’s a closet, remove everything in segments and organize each part so the job is not overwhelming. Wipe down the surfaces and then you can begin working. You want the closet, drawer or container to be clean before you put things back into it.
Divide the contents into categories: keep, sell, give away/donate and throw away. Make the donation right away, don’t let boxes sit around and become clutter themselves.
You might have a piece of furniture that just doesn’t fit in your room any more. There is a possibility of selling it, if you think selling is worth the trouble. Or you could donate the furniture. It’s up to you how much time you want to invest in selling things.
If you think someone would like an object you were donating, call them immediately and ask them if they want it. If not, add it to the donate pile. Don’t keep things around just in case someone might want it.
Purge what you don’t want or need
Don’t keep things if you don’t really want them, especially if you have limited space. Don’t contemplate things for too long, just make a decision and move to the next thing.
Appreciate the fact that you are freeing yourself of clutter. It can weigh you down when it becomes a problem. Purging can be cathartic. You will feel so much better when you look at the finished space.
It’s time to put everything you are keeping back in its space. Whether you use containers to store things, shelving or just putting it back in closets and dressers, you need to have a system in place. Filing systems or a command center can help you get your belongings in order.
Over the door shoe organizers work well for a number of things, not just shoes. Brainstorm ideas to use the space you have in the best way possible to reduce or eliminate the clutter.
Take a new approach to the problem by creating habits that will keep the clutter at bay. Don’t let it accumulate again. For example, open mail next to the recycle bin and put any paper you don’t need in there right away. Then file or sort the remaining paper.
Evaluation and Change
Once you have been using the space consider if your system is working. Is clutter starting to collect in the spot again? Or, is the space still organized? Family members might find it a pain to do things to keep your home organized. Be patient, but make sure the system will work. Make changes to correct your system if it is not working as well as you had hoped.
Schedule time on your calendar to keep up the organizing. Some areas need attention daily, where other spots need only seasonal organizing, like clothes closets.
Becoming organized can make a big change for the better in your life. Save money by paying bills on time. You won’t buy things that you already own, but can’t find. Reduce stress and feel more relaxed.
If you need help getting started on becoming organized, I can help. Contact me and we’ll talk about it.