Staying organized this year

Everyone has a little bit of clutter in their lives, whether it’s a junk drawer overflowing with odds and ends or a collection of shirts hanging in your closet that you never wear. If prioritizing your belongings and staying organized is on your list of New Year resolutions, follow these simple tips to make your goal a success.

Decide what organized means to you

Being organized seems like a pretty self explanatory concept, but organization has lots of different meanings to different people. For some people, an organized chaos that only they can navigate through may suffice, but others prefer a color-coordinated, labelled system. Neither is intrinsically better than the other, so make sure that you define what being organized looks like for you, so you can track your goal and see progress as you declutter your life.

Start with something that motivates you

Starting is almost always the most difficult part of a new goal or habit, so start with something that makes you feel accomplished. For some people, the place to start may be obvious such as an out-of-control hall closet that has been bugging them for months, but in other cases starting small might give you the sense of accomplishment you need about your progress.

Make decisions

When choosing how to organize your belongings, put some thought into what type of organization works best. If you have several similar items such as kitchen utensils, consider categorical organization and group the items together in a convenient location. For clothes, color coding may be a good option. The key is to make sure that everything has a intentional place. Deciding where to put your toothbrush might be a no-brainer, but some items may not have an obvious place. Consider when, how and how often the items are used to prioritize their location.

Use labels

Labelling is a great way to stay organized, and label makers are a cheap investment that make the process go smoothly. You can find them in many stores and order them off Amazon for as little as 15 dollars.

Take breaks

Pacing yourself is extremely important to a successful organization spree. It’s not logical to organize your entire house in one afternoon, so pick specific tasks to complete everyday. Focusing on a specific drawer or room in your house can make you more motivated to continue and make it easier to see your progress. Also, don’t forget to reward yourself along the way with some relaxation time or time doing something you enjoy.

Forward thinking

The difference between tidying up and organizing is the amount of thought that is put into organization. Haphazardly putting things away into drawers or pushing clutter under your bed might be a temporary solution, but it will only make the problem worse in the future. When you acquire new belongings make sure to think about what you are buying, why you need it and where it will go before making the purchase. Thinking ahead will help you to avoid accumulating items that you don’t need or use and make the feat of staying organized much easier.

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