You need to get organized, but you’re overwhelmed. You don’t know where to begin. Do you need to go out and buy a bunch of fancy bins and baskets? What about labels? Seems like organized people like labels. You decide you should definitely go get some labels. Color coordinated labels? How many color coordinated labels does one need, you wonder. You start questioning the size of your closets, you decide if you’re ever going to get more organized you need more closet space, for sure. Maybe your house just isn’t big enough, that’s the problem – time to buy a huge house!
Sound familiar? Organizing your home can seem insurmountable sometimes. For this reason, organization usually gets pushed down the priority list. But when that happens your closets, cabinets, and rooms tend to get even more unorganized – and then you’re back to feeling overwhelmed again. But what if I told you I have a secret that will solve all your messy problems and start you on the right track to getting your whole home organized? You don’t need bigger closets, a bigger house, or even a single new bin (for now). You ready?
That’s it. When it comes to organizing your stuff, the secret is to have less stuff to begin with. You don’t need six umbrellas, three that are broken, and one that has a hole in it. You need one or two umbrellas. You don’t need 27 towels, some you don’t even remember where they came from, spilling out of your linen closet. You need a couple sets of matching towels for each bathroom. Get the picture? I’ll say it again.
Now, I’m not telling you to go gather all your meaningful family heirlooms and sentimental keepsakes and throw them in the nearest dumpster. The key is to edit down your belongings to the things that you need, and get rid of all the extra junk that accumulates over time. Everything in your home should fall into three loose categories:
- It is something that I need and use
- It is something that is beautiful and I love to look at
- It is something that brings me happiness
Sounds simple enough right? Do those 10 pairs of old dusty shoes in your closet that you haven’t worn since college fit into any of those three categories? Exactly.
So, how do you get rid of your stuff? Here are my tips.
- Start with one room or closet at a time, and start small. For instance, decide to clean out your hall closet today, not clean out your entire house.
- Empty out everything in the closet or cabinet you’re working on, so you can see every object. Then start sorting – trash, donate, keep.
- Ask yourself important questions as you’re deciding on what you should keep. Have you used it in the past year? If you were shopping today would you buy it? Are you keeping this item out of obligation? Be brutally honest with yourself.
- Moving forward, keep a running donation box somewhere in your home. Every time you run across something that needs to go – throw it in the donation box. When the box is full, take it to a donation center and start over with your empty box.
It’s impossible to be organized if you have too much clutter. Organized clutter is still clutter. The key is to edit, edit, edit. Once you’ve cleared the excess, you can organize the things you actually need and use. So start small, and GET RID OF YOUR STUFF! You won’t miss it, I promise.