Whether you're always looking for new ways to reorganize your space, or living that "less is more" motto, it's never a bad time to tackle the clutter in your life and organize your home. It should work for you and not against you. But, the challenge remains: how to get organized? Thankfully, Woman's Day checked in with some certified National Association of Productivity & Organizing Professionals members to uncover and highlight the best organizing tips for tidying up even the peskiest of spaces.
Beyond the "how," organizing can also give you a sense of peace. "Organization, to me, is one of the most calming and stress-free therapeutic vitamins that you could ever take," Wendy Silberstein, a professional organizer who's also known as the Aesthetic Organizer, tells Woman's Day. "Organization dictates what your daily life will be like; it brings families together; it brings marriages together; and it makes daily life so much simpler."
Professional organizer at STR8N UP, Jennifer Truesdale, tell's Woman's Day that finding ways to stay organized can help people avoid "decision fatigue," which is a state of mental exhaustion that comes after making a million tiny decisions all day. "If we can eliminate any clutter or chaos with organized systems and simplify our routines with more order, then we can eliminate many of those subconscious decisions that tax our brain throughout the day, allowing us more time for maximizing our daily productivity," she says.
Of course, it may feel overwhelming to organize your entire home, so it's important to take it one step at a time. Our experts provide some easy tips to get you going.
Be honest with yourself.
One of the first things you need to do to keep your home orderly is to get rid of what you don't need. It's common to contain stuff you never use because you either forgot you had certain things or you've developed emotional attachments to items.
Be honest with yourself. Let go of what you don't use or won't miss.
Create an on-the-go kit with sample products.
If you’ve collected a lot of small sampler products, corral them together in a clear zippered pouch that you can either grab and go the next time you travel or that you can keep in a drawer under the sink to try out the next time you want to change your skincare routine, professional organizer Wendy Silberstein advises.
Consider a lazy Susan for spices.
If you’re a whiz in the kitchen, Silberstein advises keeping the things you use most often close at hand. She recommends putting your spices on a lazy Susan either on the counter or in a cabinet next to your oils and vinegars, somewhere by the stove so they’re easy to reach when you need them.
Attach a mesh bag to your hamper for socks.
It’s no secret that socks always seem to get lost. Keep them with their pair by putting them in a mesh bag attached to your hamper and then throwing the whole thing in the wash. “If everyone has their own sock bag, you will be able to match into pairs and put them away with ease,” professional organizer Jennifer Truesdale says.
Buy things in categories.
Instead of buying bowls, pots and pans, food containers, and other grouped-together items at different times, get them together or as a set.
Why? Because they're more likely to easily nest together or fit within each other, making them easy to store.
If everything has a place, your home will look neat. Make sure items that can be contained are in a specified container. This will also help you remember where you put things. It's a no-brainer.
Label, label, label.
“You want your kids to be independent and understand where things are,” Silberstein says on the importance of labeling when you live with others. A simple set of labels for where major items go will help ensure that people can find them and put them back where they belong.
Sort your fridge like a grocery store.
Just as grocery stores have a designated place for different types of items — meats, dairy, snacks, etc. — so too should your fridge. Silberstein advises using clear bins in your fridge to keep everything in its designated place, and stacking the bins to take advantage of the height available on most refrigerator shelves.
Get rid of old tech.
Unless you are trying to have an old-phone museum or a graveyard of old computers, it's time to get rid of old tech.
Consider selling your items on eBay or disposing of them the proper way by doing a quick Google search on how or where to recycle, depending on the item.
Store kids' toys in over-the-door organizers.
“Pockets are your friends,” says Truesdale. “Use over the door shoe bags with pockets for corralling all types of items when you need extra hidden yet accessible storage.”
Pick your favorite cleaning products.
“Don’t have 100 products,” Silberstein says. “Most people think they have no space under their sink, but they just have so many products they don’t need.” She suggests picking your favorite multi-surface cleaner, glass cleaner, and bathroom cleaner, and storing those with a few sponges and rags in a bin under the sink.
Use a basket for constant clutter.
If you have a partner or little one who’s constantly cluttering up the same space, have a dedicated basket in that space to keep things tidy. “Items can be put in the basket and easily carried to their room to be put away later,” Truesdale says.
Create an organization station in a kitchen cabinet.
Put everything in its place.
Assign specific living quarters to everything you own, and enlist baskets, trays, crates, and hooks to help. If it doesn't have a home, it doesn't stay in the house.
Create a coffee station.
A mug over here, a coffee maker there, some K-cups elsewhere... A designated coffee station can make a difference in your mornings and in the overall vibe of your space.
Grouping things in color can help you live in many ways. Not only will you know where everything is, this organizing method will also make things look beautiful.
Keep a tray on your coffee table.
A small, open tray on the coffee table keeps remote controls from slipping between sofa cushions, says professional organizer Kathy Waddill, author of The Organizing Sourcebook: Nine Strategies for Simplifying Your Life.
Brie Gatchalian is a mom of two, experienced cat mom, wife and freelance writer based in North Jersey. She loves finding the best products and sharing the info with family, friends and readers. She thoroughly researches before she buys, so you don't have to.
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