Today I am sharing 5 tips that have helped me stay organized recently in the hopes that we can all share what works for us and what doesn’t work out at all.
I have made just ONE goal for myself this year, and it’s a big one because it applies to pretty much everything in my life that has felt incredibly unorganized in the past year. Last year was a messy one for us with pregnancy complications, then loss, then birthdays and holidays, but perhaps it was just everything combined that acted as the catalyst for these changes.
Whatever the reason was, I am so thankful, because this year I am on top of it! So, grab yourself a great planner (my purple momAgenda just arrived this week!) and, in addition to scheduling, I hope these tips can help you feel on top of it this year, too!
Be Grateful to “Yesterday You” for the Help Today.
Basically, just make yourself do (insert tedious chore here) today so that you can be happier tomorrow. Or, if you’re a fan of Pinteresty graphics:
So. darn. true. I know, this is probably something you have all learned years ago, but it has taken the past year for me to realize how much of my daily “mess” had involved cleaning up after “yesterday me.” Not that I was a slob, but I would put things off out of exhaustion, time, emotional state, or (insert excuse here). No more! If a task seems daunting to you, ask yourself, “Will I be happy tomorrow if this is already done?” Then follow your lead on that answer. It is always easier to live today if you’re not playing catch-up to yesterday.
Start Chasing One Rabbit.
My husband and I are known for having a thousand ideas and plans that we would like to do. While it is fun to dream of all of these ideas and plans, if you’re anything like me, it takes a lot of energy and space in your head to have a lot of things on your list that you would like to do some day.
I’m not telling you to stop having or chasing your dreams, but, I found the above wisdom (from our fortune cookie) to be inspiring to our family. We have been chasing the ideas all over the place and we were just letting them slip through our fingers. No more! We set one, attainable goal for each of us this year and we are working on that.
This can apply in every space of your life, from making plans with friends, to kids’ events, to potential vacations, just narrow things down to what’s the biggest priority to you, and make that happen.
Take Care of Your Things First, then Yourself.
One HUGE difference in tasks that I have made was opening the mail up before I was able to set it on the table. Even if I’m putting down bags of groceries, I’m sorting and recycling junk mail, and opening bills to put on our bulletin board.
We started our own business this year (yay!) and since then, I felt that rush of household chaos that I had when I worked full-time outside of the home returning quickly. The dishes were piling up, random desk junk was growing, and I had to put a stop to it immediately. Our dishwasher will be replaced during a kitchen renovation, so until then, we’ve been hand-washing since April. I set a drying rack on the side and now wash them as they’re dirtied, and I clean all dinner-prep dishes as I use them before we even eat for the night.
Desk junk is put into piles for filing, keepsakes (birthday cards, etc), and shredding. It’s a constant, revolving-door of proactiveness, but, let me tell you, it is worth it to stay on top of it as it comes in.
Don’t Let Laundry Linger.
Laundry isn’t like the Cranberries song, people, we need closure; and I know I’m dating myself by linking the two thoughts! Honestly, this change has been soooooo annoying, BUT, it has been absolutely worth it. Previously, I had those days where I would dump the laundry into the basket, then it may or may not even make it out of there into the closet or drawers before it all needed to be washed again. Now, I fold as I take things out of the dryer. Ugggghhh, but Yesssss. Now I can walk in with the basket right to each room to put things away immediately. THAT feels good.
Weekly Data Dump.
Dump. That. Data. We recently bought a back-up external hard drive for weekly organization on the computer. Photos are now moved to appropriate folders (I sort mine by year and month), and I created folders, “for_INSPIRATION,” “for_BLOGS,” and “for_RESEARCH” to dump the million related screenshots that I take from my iPhone and iPad during the week as ideas for those categories. It felt ridiculously freeing having a method to my madness.
In what area of your home do you find organizing to be the most challenging? I would love to know what works for others!