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Get Organized & Stay Organized

February 13th, 2012 by Mel

With the cold weather looking to stick around a little longer, now’s the time to squeeze in all those DIY projects you’ve wanted to do inside your home but have put off. If one of those projects is to organize your home and cut clutter, here’s some key strategies to help put your home back together.

One reason things pile up on counters, tables, and floors is that they don’t have a spot where they belong. Make sure every item has a place. Storing items in the room where they’re used helps ensure they get put away when you’re done, and usually it helps to store like items together. If it’s an item you use frequently, make sure to store it in a place with easy access. Things are also less likely to pile up if you keep unnecessary items out of your home. For example: Maybe you’re an avid reader and buy books like crazy-why not borrow (and return!) them from your public library or a friend? Sure freebies are nice to get, like t-shirts and Frisbees, but will you really use it or enjoy it? If not, just say “No Thanks”.

Another easy way to de-clutter is to dump the duplicates. If you follow the rule “one in, one out” you’re home will stay clutter free. Anytime you get something new, get rid of what you’re replacing or the item that is similar. Why have 5 hairbrushes or 10 coffee mugs when you only use your favorite? Which leads us into our next strategy: beware of nostalgia.

If you’re a parent, you don’t have to get rid of every drawing and piece of clothing from your kid’s childhood or yours for that matter, but if your goal is to minimize clutter, you must! Save a few of your favorite pieces and then donate what you can and trash the rest. Another way to cope with ridding your home of things from the past is to take pictures of some of your favorite things you want to remember. Wouldn’t you rather have pictures of your child’s adobe house art project verse keeping the bug-infested project itself? There’s also a rule when it comes to wardrobes: 80:20 rule. We wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time. An easy way to clean out your closet is to sort through them at the end of each season. If a garment no longer fits, or is uncomfortable then toss it in a box and take it to a charity or good will. Don’t hold on to items because you think you might need it one day, or that even though you haven’t worn it in a while you think you will eventually. The key to de-cluttering is getting rid of things, not rearranging them.

Finally, buy some clear organizing containers and use them to create kits where you store all the items you need for a particular task. For instance, you could create a sewing kit, a manicure kit, a craft kit, and so on. That way you can easily find everything you need to accomplish everyday tasks.

Hope these strategies help clean up your home! Happy organizing!

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