It is one thing to organize.
“I’m going to go through this pile today…”
“I am going to get rid of the clothes I don’t wear anymore…”
“I am going to pick up the house today…”
But how do you KEEP the scenarios above, from happening again?
Organizing and STAYING organized are two different things.
Staying organized means you have a system that is working. Items are staying in their “home”, piles aren’t collecting, and you feel an overall satisfaction with the function of your home. So how do you get to that point?
9 Tips On How To Stay Organized:
1. Give everything a place – as the saying goes “a place for everything and everything in it’s place.” I cannot stress this enough – make sure EVERY item has a home. A permanent place. If it is used, make sure you put it back where it belongs – in it’s exact home.
2. Make the decision. We often say “I’ll deal with it later.” Unfortunately that “later” never comes and we end up having pile after pile of “laters”. Be proactive and deal with each item right away. For example, mail – sort it as you walk back up to the house or as you are going through it.
3. If you feel cluttered in your own home, decide to get rid of one thing a day. If you are on a roll, maybe start to get rid of THREE items a day!
4. Create a donation station. This has been a time and space saver for me personally. I would find items to donate, but have no place for them, so they would just become clutter again. I then found an empty/unused space in a closet where I either keep a clothes basket or bag. I can put any item I find I don’t need, in the basket/bag. When the bag/basket is full, I know I need to add a trip to the donation center when I go into town.
5. Take 10 minutes of your day to organize or pick up. Picking up your house after the kids go to bed, can be a clearing of the mind. Putting things back where they belong and going to bed knowing your house is somewhat in order, can directly give you a better sleep at night. Your mind is freed from the clutter IN your home and when you wake up, you wake up to ORGANIZATION.
6. Learn to say no. Staying organized means being able to say no to the things that clutter up our lives. Sometimes a certain activity, event, or opportunity may be a good thing, but is it the RIGHT thing? “Good” opportunities will always be on our doorstep – we don’t have to look far. But that doesn’t mean YOU have to do them all.
7. Fill out a calendar or planner. Planners are dangerous in the sense that we buy one because it is cute or we ASPIRE to be organized. But do we actually use it? Same with a calendar. I personally have one large calendar for our home and then a planner that I can take with me. Making sure that they BOTH say the same thing, is important. Keeping an organized schedule for you and your family to see, is important.
8. Make a list of the top things you want to accomplish in a day. By keeping a to-do list, you can assure that nothing will be overlooked or forgotten. Warning: make your to-do list manageable. Don’t write 10 things down, hoping you will accomplish them all. Be realistic. If you write down too much, you will constantly see yourself as a failure for not accomplishing everything. Keep it simple.
9. Make a household binder. Having a “station” where all of your bills, lists, stamps, envelopes, schedules, birthdays/anniversaries, food inventories/meal plans, etc. are kept, can be a huge time-saver. If you are looking for something specific, you can go directly to the binder and find exactly what you need, instead of looking through pile after pile. Keep a central station so that you can keep YOU organized and your household duties.
How do YOU stay organized? What are some helpful tips that work for you?