I try to keep my closets, and the rest of my house organized. No matter how hard I try, it seems like I can’t get it right.
The trick to becoming organized is identifying the habits you need to change, as well as the habits that are worth keeping. It can be your kitchen counter that gets piled with clutter, a home office area, or a dresser drawer that will no longer close.
Here are 7 organizing mistakes you may be making and how you can correct them:
Finding the perfect place to start
Not knowing where to begin is often the result of being overwhelmed by clutter. It can be a vicious cycle. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s hard to get started and think clearly about your goals. Start with something simple. Grab a trash bag, pick a room and get started. Fill your bag with either trash or things you want to donate to charity. Once you take this simple step, you’ll feel more motivated to tackle more areas.
I am the queen of lists and sticky notes. However, this practice can contribute to feeling overwhelmed by clutter. If you’re constantly searching for notes, creating more Post-its and updating your dry erase board, you’re not getting anything done. Keep a central calendar that everyone can view and make a new list of your important to-do items each day. Focus on what’s most important and let the rest go.
Relying on technology
As technology takes over our lives, we are using our computers, smartphones or tablets to try and organize every minute of our day. While it’s good to archive important information or set appointment reminders on your phone, try not to let technology control you. If you’re constantly checking your phone, you may end up on social media sites, online shopping or sending unnecessary texts or messages. Stay focused on what you need to accomplish instead.
Who hasn’t thrown items in a drawer, closet or room when you know company is coming to your house? We also stash clutter rather than truly put it in it’s rightful place. That place could be a shelf in the basement, another room or even the trash. Hiding things creates the illusion of cleanliness and organization, but will catch up with you when you can’t find what you need or the junk drawer will no longer shut.
Buying too many containers
Containers can play a valuable role in putting together an organized space, but it can be a mistake to make a trip to the container store before you even start organizing. First, bringing containers into a cluttered space can just make it look more messy. Second, you may uncover or reuse containers as you are decluttering. And, it’s much harder to know what types of containers you need before you even start organizing. The solution: shop for any storage solutions after you’ve gotten started on the organizing process.
Getting emotionally attached
I have a sweatshirt in my closet that I wore in high school. I don’t wear it anymore. I keep it because it holds memories for me. It’s easy to getting emotionally attached to our possessions. Yet, you need to try and approach decluttering rationally and logically. Do I need six black sweaters? While I could try to justify that they are various styles, I probably do not need that many black sweaters. While it may be painful to cut down on your belongings, you will be happy you did when you’re space feels organized.
The key to organizing is taking it slowly. Once you get started tackling your clutter, you’re going to want to organize everything RIGHT NOW. It’s better to pace yourself – both in a single organizing session or as part of your overall organizing plans. You’ll keep from burning yourself out and be able to maintain your focus as you organize your home.
Being more organized will benefit you in the long run. In order to achieve lasting change, you must find the system that works best for you. Then, you can clean up your space, find what you need quickly and reclaim your life!