Submitted by Alex Trabue
Summer is quickly approaching and that means kids are out of school, the weather is beautiful and our schedules are dwindling down. Take this time to organize your home. For most of my clients, the challenge is not the actual process of organizing; it is where to begin. Here are a few tips on how to get your organization project started and what to do once you begin.
- Start small. Don’t try to tackle the garage one Sunday afternoon. Start by de-cluttering a small section or a drawer. If you take on too large of a project by yourself, you might get tired and discouraged. Small victories are the key to success. Also, give yourself enough time to complete the project. You do not want to get started and have to come back later. A drawer can take 30 minutes to an hour to clean out and reorganize, but a closet can take three or four hours.
- Tackle a space that has a big impact on your life. If this is your first organization project, pick an area that causes the most frustration on a regular basis. Yes, your attic may be a pain point but start with an area that you will see on a daily basis and will bring you joy instantly. For example, that utensil drawer that you fight everyday to get open and closed.
- Pull every item out of the space. You will make a big mess before it gets better. This will allow you to see everything that is hidden in that space. You will start asking yourself questions like, “Do I need this?,” “Will I use it?” or “Does it belong in this space?”
- Categorize. After you have decided what needs to stay, start grouping similar items together like pens, batteries or spatulas. This will help you with the next step when it comes to deciding the size container you need. You may also see in this step that you have duplicates.
- Contain (give it a home) and label. I am a big fan of putting items in a basket, bin or drawer organizer. When items are in a bin versus sitting on a shelf you have less room for error. It forces you to put it back in the correct spot each time or if your bin is too full it forces you to reevaluate what is in the bin. After your items are in a bin and put back in the space, label everything. Labeling allows you to be held accountable for putting it back correctly and helps family members know where things go.
Remember when you invest in getting organized, you save yourself time and money in the long run.