The Question You Must Ask BEFORE You Start Organizing
Today may be one of the only times you hear me say “Put down the label maker. Don’t get out the decluttering bin yet. And hold off on submitting that order to The Container Store.”
I know! It sounds shocking. But today I want to share with you the one thing you need to do before you start organizing. If you prefer watching my tips on video, just click below.
Don’t worry, this simple pre-step won’t take long. But before you dive into a new organizing project there’s one question you need to ask yourself: What makes a space organized?
If you don’t know where the finish line is, it’s going to be hard to know when you’re there. That’s why it’s important to set some ground rules for what makes up an organized space before you get started.
There are three simple things that make a space organized, and these are the only three things that your organized space needs to have:
Everything Has a Place
This is the core and foundation of organizing: every item needs to have a home. It does not necessarily need to be beautiful or in any specific order, it just needs to have a home, so that every time you’re looking for that item, you know right where to go.
Everyone Who Uses that Item Needs to Know Where Its Home Is
If you’re the only one using that item, this is super easy! Just ask yourself “if I were looking for this item, where would I look for it?” If other members of your household need to use the item, then work together with them to find a space that works for everyone. For example, I don’t hang my children’s coats up high because they couldn’t reach it.
The Space Needs to Make You Smile When You See It
In order for a space to be organized, it just needs to make you smile when YOU, the one who uses the space, looks at it. There’s no standard here, it’s just about what makes you happy. Do you like color coding your clothes? Go for it! Do you prefer stacked shoe boxes with the contents listed on top in Sharpie? Sounds great! Do you like like using Oxo containers to store your baking goods? Then do it! If the space makes you smile, it’s a win.
Before you dive into your next organizing project make sure you take a few minutes to visualize the finish line so that when you get there you can declare it a huge success. (And maybe throw yourself a little party, because hey, there aren’t enough celebrations in the world!)
I cover all of this in my free guide Six Steps to Get Organized Today, so make sure you click below to grab it!
Laurel Kaufman Says
I LOVE every email from you! I seriously need to get down to organizing my whole house, one area at a time of course. I have not had the funds to purchase your organizers, though I want one badly! I’m sorry I missed out on the little clearance sale a while back, but I use all the info I can get from your emails and blogs. I am a busy mom indeed: my youngest is Autistic with ADHD and tons of therapies and medical appointments on top of school! Keep up the wonderful work you do, you are my hero!