Getting Organized

Spring is a great time to get organized because the light is starting to shine really well into your home for longer times during the day making it more obvious what needs cleaning and what’s been sitting for too long. So today I thought I’d share a few ideas for getting and staying organized.

The big thing that many people are talking about when it comes to organizing right now is the question of “does it bring you joy?” Organizing like so many other things has many options and perspectives, and the question of joy is just one of many ways to decide what’s important enough to you to keep. You can also question how long it’s been since you used/wore it, if it helps you be productive, if it serves multiple purposes, does it work/is it broken, or if it’s functional. If you’ve gone through those questions and you’re still on the fence about keeping something, asking whether or not it brings you joy certainly can be the deciding factor.

Once you’ve decided what you’re keeping you have to decide how you’re going to keep/store it, for example by date or color or theme or family. There isn’t a right or wrong here, with the exception of not having any system. It may take a little work to find out what system works best for you, so I would try a system for a month or a season (about 3 months), and by then you should be confident as to whether it works for you or not.

Getting organized continues with how you’re storing stuff. One of my biggest frustrations when it comes to organization is that most of us aren’t really well equipped to store the things we do want to keep. Much of the furniture that’s available is built to store a wide variety of items, which can be great because it means you can reuse it in a multitude of ways and get a lot of life out of it. Typically furniture is also designed horizontally rather than taking advantage of all the storage potential there is vertically. However if we were to change out from using some of the bookcases and dressers and instead used more custom shelving (even simply shelves) for our books, toys, clothing, shoes, office items, and kitchen items we’d be able to better store items, know what we have and have more space in our rooms as well.

Staying organized is just like many other things, if you keep after it consistently you’ll stay on top of it. Maybe that simply means seasonally going through things, or being more conscious about what you buy and whether or not you really need it (a.k.a. making fewer impulse purchases). It definitely means that you take the extra seconds or minutes to put things where they really belong neatly rather than throwing things in a pile and leaving it for “tomorrow.”

What are your organization tips and challenges?

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