Friday, August 24, 2012

Keeping your home organized

Small organizing actions are the seeds of creating an organized home and little steps are what success is all about. Daily routines, little rituals, creating designated places for things and taking a few minutes to make space to get organized can rapidly propel you to creating order in your home. Just a warning, organizing feels so good and the rewards are so great it can be addictive and once you follow these organizing tips and experience the benefits organizing brings, you’ll want to organize more!

Think about containers that co-ordinate and sort out smaller clutter  in  the different rooms of your home: for example different size baskets with or without lids look great in the bathroom. For kitchen clutter Some organizing tips are  to use boxes, A4 magazine holders, baskets or jars. Keep them in the same color and use them to get in control of all your surface and small clutter.
For a streamlined, less cluttered look get lots of the same boxes in one color. Ikea have a lot of different boxes and baskets in lots of different shapes and sizes to choose from.
I found these versatile different size set of 6 boxes at Ikea, they could be used in many rooms in the home. Click on this link to see more
Keeps socks, belts, jewellery, pens, nicknacks etc. in order. They fold, therefore saving space when not in use. Available in Lilac or white

Are what keep you organized and every box in your home needs to have a label. This not only helps you find what you need, it helps you put things back in the right place. You can label a container with a category name or detail the contents
Edit, edit edit
How many plastic containers do you really need or want in the cupboard or drawer?
How many clear vases can be filled with flowers at one time? How many ugly pens you got for free do you need? Its a good idea to go through your cupboards and wardrobes every 6 months and do a purge. It opens up the way for new to come in

One in - one out
When getting something new get rid of something old. If you get a new item of clothing, see if there is an old item of clothing you can either give away or throw out. If I get something new  I check the cupboards to see what I have'nt used or worn for awhile, then I give away or donate that item to charity.

Rotate your collections
It’s not necessary to display all your belongings all the time. Switch items around when you feel the need for a change. I like doing this with the different seasons

Buy white
Buy day to day supplies in white, no print, no color, just pure white. Paper towels, toilet brush, dish towels, toilet paper, candles, napkins, the list goes on. White looks clean and fresh and doesn’t draw attention to the boring day to day stuff we all need

Put a grocery list on your refrigerator
One of the biggest time consumers and money wasting areas is the kitchen. An easy tip to implement is to put a  grocery list on your refrigerator and get your entire family to fill it in when they see a food needs replacing.
This habit takes seconds and of all the home organization tips this one can have the biggest time saving, money saving impact. The key to success is to take a minute to check the list, say after dinner, and add what food needs to be replaced in the next shop.
What is wonderful about this is when shopping day comes around your list is almost finished, you have a grocery list tailored to what is being consumed in your household which can eliminate unnecessary buying. You eliminate frequent runs to the grocery store and this will save you time and money.

Organize your finances
Good money management is critical to living a successful organized life and a good financial organizing tip is to put your bills in one place. If you loose bills, incur late fees make this a priority.
The key to success is to set up reminders on your calendar in red, on your computer, post it note what ever you need to do to pay bills on time. Late fees are a total waste of time and a source of unnecessary guilt and friction.
Organizing your bills in a file, binder or drawer in a designated place is a baby step towards clutter free and organized money management. This puts your bills in order for easy access and psychologically begins to create clarity around your finances.

Separate for better visibility
This is so important and is a strong step towards setting limits and preventing over crowding of any space. A little space around every item creates a sense of order and looks neater. and goes a long way to organizing your home. Think about wooden hangers which give clothes breathing space, drawer dividers and uncluttered surfaces which will give your home a sense of calm and comfort.

Plan rewards for yourself
The most enjoyable home organization tip of all is to reward yourself and celebrate your success for the shifts in thinking and the actions you are taking to make life easier.
Organizing is all about making the time, money and space to enjoy and make the most of your life. Make sure to include in your time out something you want to do personally for yourself. Try reconnecting with someone you value. This may be non busy time with your children where you talk and listen, call a friend to say hi, coffee alone in the morning with your husband or wife, or just wishing some one well. Make a connection of value a daily habit.
Feelings of connection and wellbeing are uplifting and energizing and give your organizing attitude a huge energy boost.

Eliminate all your paper clutter
Another important organizing tip is to begin to eliminate all your paper clutter. Buy an A4 notebook and start to write your do lists, messages, and small bits of information in the one notebook. Next time you need to look for that one off address or the phone number of the plumber your friend recommended it will be recorded in your notebook.
Writing all information in one place means you no longer loose it, no longer have to look for it and saves you countless hours of frustration over time as well as decreasing paper pile ups. The key to success is to put it in an accessible place with a plan.

Creating visual cues are important in the organizing process  
and making beds in the morning is a must to shift to an organized home. This may sound ridiculous but a neatly made bed sets a visual standard that is contagious. A room with a well made bed makes any clutter, junk or mess really stand out and a lot harder not to pick up. This is the best habit to get your family into. The key to success is to get the beds made before you get busy with the morning tasks.

Start a daily organizing routine
A top tip is to start a daily organizing routine that includes the entire family. One of the easiest routines is a daily family pick up. Select aside ten minutes after dinner, set a timer and for ten minutes every member of your family picks up and puts away.
This saves you hours of housework a week, encourages teamwork and with a little music can be a fun activity to do. Most kids can cope with ten minutes of picking up and just starting this as a family quickly morphs into an unconscious habit and often you will find when the ten minutes are up everyone keeps on working!  If you want to reclaim hours of time start this today.

Get into the habit of putting your clothes away
A great tip to getting organized is to get into the habit of putting clothes away. It takes seconds to put clothing into a laundry hamper hang in a closet or put in a drawer but it can take you hours a week to put away piles of clothing.
If this is a clutter and organizing issue for your family use your ten minute pick up routine as a putting away clothing time.
The key to success is to first model putting away and taking care of your clothes and then set aside a minute or two after school, or before bed to remind your family of their new organizing habit. Soon it will become automatic so stick with it.

The most important tip on getting organized is that success is really a moment away and unless you try it and give it 100% you will never know if it could really work for you.
These tips are short cuts to your organizing success and creating a home and a life that really works well for you. Start one or start all of the organizing tips today so you can work smarter not harder and enjoy life more.

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