photo albums on shelf

Keep only your favorites

Identify your favorite things and make space to enjoy those things. This will probably require the removal of unused, outdated, and unwanted stuff. By reducing those possessions, your favorite things have breathing room, and you have less to organize and maintain.

Here are a few suggestions:

Reset day

Establish a weekly reset day. A day where you clean up and clear out in order to start fresh for the coming week. My reset day is Sunday. I do several things on this day that help me maintain order.

  • Check calendar and weekly work schedule
  • Plan meals
  • Change sheets
  • Water plants
  • Change bathroom and kitchen towels
  • Do laundry

 

 

 

How many is enough?

Use instead of store

There is a distinction between using things and storing things. One signifies action and the other signifies stockpiling. For example, using up the big jug of laundry detergent you bought vs. storing the 5 jugs of laundry detergent you bought. Which situation requires less effort to organize and maintain? Go with that one!

Recycle more paper

It can be a struggle to determine whether to keep or recycle certain papers. So, I’ve devised a list of questions that will help you. Answer the following questions honestly and objectively. If your answer is no to 5 or more questions it’s time to recycle or shred that paper.

  • Do you have a specific use for this paper?
  • Does this paper hold current and up-to-date information?
  • Did you request this information?
  • Will this paper help you complete a project you’re working on now?
  • Are there tax, legal, or insurance reasons to keep this paper?
  • Is this information important to your life right now?
  • Is this paper referred to often?
  • Can this information be obtained elsewhere or again if needed?
  • Would getting rid of this paper make your life more difficult?

 

Getting better at organizing takes practice

If you wanted to learn to play the guitar, what would you do? Would you look into taking lessons? How often would you practice? Would you expect to get better with only a few attempts? My guess is that you’d tell yourself to practice, practice, practice. Well, organizing is a skill, just like playing the guitar. You’ll make progress and get better at it with practice. I’d recommend practicing organizing for at least 10 minutes every day.

For some ideas on how to practice and improve your organizing skills look at these articles: