Organizing for the New Year

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The New Year. The time when people look forward to making a change for the better. In one area or another.

Each January, people across the world make a list of New Year’s Resolutions and mark the things they would like do better in the coming year.

Getting Organized is one of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions and one of the hardest to stay on target with. So let’s look at some solutions to help you get and stay organized:

Getting Organized in the Home

One of the biggest obstacles to getting organized in the home is clutter. Clutter in the home builds up because of two things (in my thinking). One people tend to be afraid to throw things out and two people tend to put things down and not put them away.

To deal with issue number one go through your home using the 3 box or bag method. Label 3 boxes or bags with the words Give Away, Throw Away, Put Away. As you clean each room if you are not going to be using an item or if you no longer have a need for it, throw it out, give it away, or donate it to charity. And then put the ones you are keeping AWAY.

Now issue number two. You can have a room go from blah to aaaahhhh simply by clearing off tables, counters, and flat surfaces and putting things away.

Paper is one of the biggest sources of clutter. To keep this at bay, open your mail each day and put the items that will need your attention, such as bills, in a letter bin. Throw out the junk mail and catalogs that you will not need.

Don’t things look better already?

Purchasing Organizing Items

To keep things organized in the home think containerize. For example, baskets and bins really help to keep things contained yet at the ready. This works in any room such as the kitchen, bathrooms, even living rooms and bedrooms. Containerize.

In the living room or family room of your home, consider buying an ottoman to store toys, games, extra blankets, and so forth. You will still have access to these items, but they won’t visually take up space. The ottoman can serve as a table or seating, which makes it a great addition to the living area.

If you don’t have a linen closet in your bathroom, consider buying a cabinet to hold towels, extra sheets, cosmetics, your hair dryer and other supplies. Smaller containers can be purchased to hold these items and they can then be placed into the larger storage unit.

As you purchase your storage items, think about the flow of your house and which items will work best in that flow. Take measurements before you purchase an item (to be sure it will fit) and be thoughtful about those storage items that you do purchase. Don’t just buy because it looks cute!

And take note that you don’t always have to purchase a new storage item. Sometimes all it takes is a little repurposing from what you already have at home.

Use Labels to Organize Your Belongings:

Have trouble finding things quickly? Use labels. And not sparingly. Labels are a fabulous way to organize things in the kitchen pantry, your child’s bedroom, the linen closet, the homeschool room, the garage and more.

Remember those containers we talked about previously? Make them even more effective by labeling them.

You can make your own labels simply on your computer, download labels for free from wonderfully crafty people who like to share or buy labels such as chalkboard labels which work great in the pantry and make it easy to change things up on a whim. Labels are a cute stylish way to keep organized.

Personal Organizing:

Finally all of this is for naught if you are not organized with your time and yourself. Work on managing how you use your time. Use calendars and planners for keeping track of your to-dos. To do lists and check off forms can keep you on top of your tasks and motivate you when you see how much you are accomplishing.

If you stay on top of things and keep your items in their designated area, you will be able to get and stay organized in the New Year with ease.

Finally keep on track of all your great organizing efforts. Each day, spend fifteen minutes picking up the house and putting things where they belong. Each evening sit down with your planner and calendars and make sure you know what you have to accomplish for the next day. And finally as you move through your days take note of what is not working and tweek your systems AND organizing tools to work for you! Happy New Year!

—oOo—

A big thank you to Kemi Quinn of Homemaking Organized for writing this guest article.

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