Be realistic: Don’t say, “I’m going to organize my entire house or my whole office today.” Start one piece at a time: with one file drawer, one shelf of a closet or one pile of papers. It’s common to feel overwhelmed when you think of the mountain in front of you. Tackling smaller pieces helps keep the momentum going.
Imagine your ideal space (home or office) Are you going for a “Zen” look? Or do you like to have things in sight to help you remember? Use magazines to help you if you aren’t good at visualizing. Incorporating good design into your organizing project will give you a more “peaceful” outcome.
Set a timer for 30 minutes and see how you feel when it rings. Can you keep going or have you done enough for one session? Some pxp clients like to do “homework” in between our organizing sessions. Spending small chunks of time looking through a stack of old documents can help you accomplish your goal of living with less!
Use the pxp “2–3 second rule” for keeping the momentum going: If you need more than 2–3 seconds to decide on an item or piece of paper, put it in a “sort later” or “read later” pile. This helps you stay focused on the task at hand and avoids getting lost going down “memory lane”!
Keep in mind your “public” and “private” spaces when making organizing decisions, as well as “in season” or “out of season.” There’s no reason to see winter boots, gloves and hats during the summer. And your guest closet is not the place for personal financial files!
In general, remember the simpler the system is, the better it is. Store items closest to their point of use. For example, if you eat cereal every morning, keep your bowls in an easy to reach location. Keep your briefcase, paperwork or laptop in a spot near the door so that you can grab them easily for that important meeting!
Keep like things together and use containers to bring order from chaos. Colorful file cabinets can grace your child’s room, refrigerator containers can hold smaller items together and your desk drawer can be organized so that your supplies are easy to find and use.
Smaller items can be put into bins or boxes. Then add a label so you can find what you need quickly. From craft projects, to memorabilia, to beans and rice, labeling and containing your items will give you peace of mind.
Contact Cindy for a free 30-minute phone consultation, available throughout Chicago, Evanston and the North Shore.