Organizing Tips

Decluttering 101

Ask yourself these questions when you are decluttering an area!

  • When did I use this last?
  • Do I need it?
  • Do I love it?
  • Can I live without it?
  • Does it give me energy or take energy away from me?

My Top 10 Tips to Keep Clutter-Free

  1. Boxes in front of empty shelves - moving concept“A place for everything, everything has its place.” Great advice from Ben Franklin!
  • STOP-Don’t put something on a flat surface! Where does it belong? No home? Find one now and stick to it!
  1. Inbox for all incoming papers
  • Have a filing system.
  • Process 1x a day or every other day.
  • File immediately.
  • Trash stuff before putting it in your inbox!
  • Pay bills immediately or file for payment.
  • Don’t leave paper anywhere!
  1. Clean up at night and/or before leaving the house.
  • Taking 5-10 minutes to make sure flat surfaces are clean will give you great peace of mind when you come into that area!
  • Waiting for your coffee? Take the time to tidy up the kitchen while you wait!
  1. Every 6 months to 1 year – DECLUTTER
  • Even with our best efforts, we accumulate. Decide your regular bingeing process and timeline now. Have your own “Declutter Day” and include others!
  • Donate your stuff to those who need it and you will feel even better!
  1. One in, One out rule
  • For every one thing you bring in the house, one has to leave the house!
  • Feeling motivated? For every one thing you bring in the house, TWO have to go!
  1. Have a 6 Month Box or a 1 Year Box
  • Have items you are unsure about? Put them in a box, tape it up and label it, and if you didn’t need anything in the box during that time, donate the whole box! This goes for clothing too!
  • Or if you have an organization like the Epilepsy Foundation, that comes by every couple of months, have a box started for them and put it to the curb when you get the notice!
  1. Declutter one room before going to the next
  • Begin in the corner of the room and move around.
  • Start with the surfaces and then deep into the insides of cabinets.
  1. Gift and donate everything you can!
  • Recycle books to friends, family, libraries, pass antiques down to family members so they can enjoy, give gently used clothing to thrift stores, etc. There is a new home and a deserving individual for everything you want to pass on!
  1. Make your storage space smaller. Less space = less stuff!
  2. Remember – your value is not in your stuff! You hold the memories!

10 Simple Household Organizing Ideas you can start today!

  1. Box of JunkHave a Launch Zone! This is the place where everyone and everything comes in and goes out. Don’t let coats, shoes, bags, etc. trail into your home haphazardously creating piles of clutter everywhere.  Have a system to put things away with a purpose.
  2. Try a clutter bag or basket in each room and by any steps. When things need to go to other rooms, just dump them in there and when they get full, pick up the bag or basket and put them back to their rightful homes!
  3. Go Green! Try some creative space saving with things around your house – instant organizing tools! Try old shoe boxes as drawer organizers, cereal boxes covered in an inexpensive fabric for magazine storage, thread scarves through old shower curtain rings on a hanger or convert a muffin tin to store odds and ends in a desk drawer. My Mother-in-Law’s trick – use an empty large rectangular kleenex box for plastic grocery bags. It holds a ton of bags, takes up such little space and stores easily.
  4. Buying containers? Always go clear. Seeing is knowing where everything is!
  5. Don’t forget to label! Even if you use a sticky note or scratch paper. Tape it on the inside so it doesn’t get easily torn off when moving.
  6. Nothing says good morning like a clean kitchen! Make a habit to get dishes done as soon as you are eating, run the dishwasher often, and wipe down those counters before going to bed.
  7. Don’t make piles! Piles start with one item. Try to never lay something on a flat surface for fear it becomes so much more. It has a home. If it doesn’t, let’s chat.
  8. Go paperless! Scan, online bank, and auto-pay are great ways to start.
  9. Take pictures of sentimental things when you’ve made the decision to no longer keep it. Download it into a memories photo folder on your computer. Perfect space-saving memory!
  10. Try a shared online calendar for the members in your household. One stop to find out who’s doing what, when appointments can be made, and more importantly, when time can be spent together!