One thing we can do this spring to feel calmer and less stressed is to organize a few things. Notice I didn’t say “get organized,” because that sounds too overwhelming. It seems to imply that if we can’t organize everything, we shouldn’t bother organizing anything. But nothing could be further from the truth! Every little bit of organization can help us feel more calm and less stressed – which is exactly what I’m looking for this spring!
Moving toward better organization doesn’t require big steps and it doesn’t have to be complicated, because every time we gain control of a disorganized area of our life, it helps us live more peacefully. Every bit of organization help us move in that direction; it just requires some simple planning and a small amount of time.
Organization is not one of my strengths, but clutter, messes and disorganization stress me out. So I’ve had to figure out how to bring order to my home and life without the advantage of being an organizing queen. Here are three simple strategies I use that can work for you too:
- Maintain – Take a few minutes every day to maintain the routine stuff. Hang up clothes, clean up dishes, remove clutter from common areas, pick up toys (better yet – have the kids do it!), and deal with the mail. When I don’t do these things I regret it, and they end up taking much longer later in the week. And once you get into the routine of doing them, it takes only a few minutes each day to make your home feel more relaxed and inviting.
- Control – Use containers to control things that tend to create clutter. Put as many “like” things as you possibly can in boxes, bins, pails or anything else that will keep them together. You don’t need expensive storage containers to do this – cardboard boxes, cheap plastic buckets and bins, and baskets you already have on hand work great. Use them to organize anything that tends to “sprawl” and create a mess – first aid supplies, toiletry items, toys, remotes, mail, socks, magazines. I was surprised by what a difference it made in my pots and pans cabinet when I started putting all of the lids in a cheap plastic bin and in my lingerie drawer when I started putting panties, bras, pantyhose, and socks in separate cardboard boxes.
- Improve – Tackle one annoying area at a time. Pick something that really bothers you – a closet, the pantry, the children’s toy area, your office, the mail – and work on it for 30 minutes. You’ll be amazed at how much better it looks and how much better you feel. Many organizing projects can be completed in 30 minutes but if it can’t, take another 30 minutes tomorrow and finish it. Then sit back and enjoy it. In a few days, pick another project and tackle it for 30 minutes. In a few weeks, by breaking organizing tasks into manageable chunks, you’ll find that you’ve organized a significant portion of your home and life.
Are you an organizing queen or do you, like me, struggle to stay organized? Either way, I’d love for you to share your organizing tips, strategies and struggles.
For lots of great organizing tips from a real expert, check out I’m An Organizing Junkie.
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