It’s that time when we all think about getting organized for the new year. Some of us (me! me! me!) relish the opportunity to organize anything and everything we can find. Others of us dread the chore of organizing anything. If you’re one of my friends that don’t enjoy organizing, let me share 6 easy steps to start getting organized right now.
I promise that these are easy steps that you truly can start today. Trust me that these simple steps will make an immediate difference and will help you kick-start your organizing journey.
1. Starting right now, when you get something out, put it away when you’re done.
No excuses. No delays. Put things away. Don’t worry about those things already lying around that need to be put away, just focus on not adding more clutter.
The old adage, “A stitch in time saves nine” is our new mantra.
2. Purge 2 items each day – one easy item and one that requires you to make a decision.
Every day make sure you get rid of one easy item that doesn’t require any thought – it just requires action. Throw away that junk mail as soon as you bring it in from the mail box. Recycle that glass jar as soon as you empty it, no hoarding (give me a moment to wipe a tear away and put my glass jar stash in the recycle bin).
Each day also purge one item that will require you to make a decision – just one item. Don’t let yourself be deterred by being afraid of tackling a big purging chore, just take a couple of minutes during the course of your day to purge one item.
When you’re getting dressed in the morning, look at your closet and pick one item that you can donate, give to a friend or throw away. When you’re waiting for that late night microwave meal to cook, go through the utensil drawer and look for that egg beater you never use. When you’re waiting at the doctor’s office, go through your purse and find items that can be removed. While waiting for the train, go through your email in box and delete or file emails.
3. Designate a folder to collect your tax paperwork all year-long in one spot.
Anytime you receive paperwork or a receipt that you need to save for tax filing, immediately place it in the tax folder. You’ll keep all that paperwork neatly filed in one spot and you’ll easily be able to find it next year when you need it.
4. Designate a decorative box to hold magazines or catalogs.
Once the box is full (or even before it’s full), you need to purge the old magazines before you can add any more. Pass the magazines on to a friend, a child care center, after-school art program or put them in the recycle bin.
5. Don’t buy anymore items in your clutter category until you’ve gone through those items, assessed what you need to keep and purged the rest.
Everyone has at least one clutter category, the items you have too many of. Your clutter category maybe clothes, shoes, books, DVDs, emails in your inbox, kitchen gadgets or recycled glass jars and containers (that’s me looking sheepish).
You may not be ready to face your entire clutter category yet, just don’t add any more to the clutter until you have tackled your clutter.
6. Learn the Square Rule of Organizing to maximize your organizing and storage options.
When you understand that square organizing containers help you store more items more efficiently, you’ll be able to maximize your storage and clean up your clutter.
Once you try these 6 easy steps to start getting organized, you’ll be ready to tackle bigger organizing jobs. I can’t wait to get started doing more organizing with you this year!