Organizing. You know I love it.
There are lots of reason why being organized is important to me. It’s not because I want to present an image of perfection. It’s not because I’m afraid of what people will think of me if something is messy in my home (I never judge anyone for the state of their home, I totally understand the #momlife situation, guys!)
It’s because organizing gives me a sense of calm and peace in our chaotic day-to-day lives. It’s because my brain is wired to function better when my visual space is cleared and clutter-free. It’s because I have a hard enough time remembering things so knowing where everything can be found and where to put things away helps me free up crucial brain space (which feels more limited the older I get.)
Of course, I also LOVE the creative and artistic component of it. It’s like interior design mixed in with geometry (how to arrange things so that they fit) and science (what system and process makes the most sense.) One of my earliest memories as a kid is organizing and it’s been just a hobby and passion since I can remember.I could go on endlessly about home organization but if I had to pick a few quick and easy ideas to implement, here are a few of my go-to’s. I’ve learned so much about organization through others and their tips, so I’m excited to share some of mine with you!
The “Going-Up” Basket –
Sometimes going up the stairs just seems like the extra step (literally) that I don’t want to take when picking things up throughout the day and putting things away. So I keep a “Going Up” basket at the foot of the stairs and I put anything there that needs to go up into the bedrooms, bathrooms, or playroom throughout the day. Then when I have a few minutes and I’m ready to head up, I grab the basket and then distribute the items accordingly to their places. What about a “going down” basket, you ask? I actually tried that but found I didn’t use it as much. For whatever reason the things from upstairs end up downstairs in the main hubs of our home much more often (hairbows in the kitchen, socks in the breakfast nook, toys in the mudroom.) But the things that belong downstairs rarely make it upstairs (a kitchen spatula, or office supplies, for example. Never upstairs. See what I mean?) I also tried a basket-for-each-person-of the-family method but we are a family of five. I don’t want 5 baskets at the foot of our stairs. So, I just keep the one. Nice and simple.
Setting a timer for chores –
Ok this might not be an organizing tip and more of a productivity hack but I find that it helps me organize my day and mind better. When I feel overwhelmed by all the things I need to do, I set a timer for 10 minutes and choose one thing that’s nagging me and just do it for 10 minutes. Something about this feels ultra productive yet not intimidating for me. Need to send emails? Set a timer for 10. Need to clear off counters? Set a timer. Need to pick up the bomb of a house (WHY KIDS. WHY?) 10 minutes, on my iPhone timer. Go through mail? 10 minutes. When I have a TON of chores I need to do, I set it for 30 minutes, put on a podcast, and make it a longer yet still enjoyable commitment and Get. It. Done. It feels rewarding and oh-so-good.
Arrange something by color –
I used to refer to this as color-coding but actually when you code something by color that is giving it a meaning: red labels mean “home office,” blue means “kitchen” or whatever. You’re actually creating a code using color. Am I right? Am I wrong? I don’t know. So I’ll refer to it as “arranging things by color order.” You can do this with cookbooks, your essential oils, your LaCroix, your sports bras in a drawer, your jewelry, your kids’ t-shirts. I mean, ANYTHING. It’s INSANE how much of a difference this makes in streamlining the look of a space. The standard order is ROY.G.BIV from the rainbow order you learned in elementary school. But you know what? Arrange it in whatever order you like and see how it looks! Just group like colors together.
Take things out of the car every day –
Nothing makes me happier than a clean car. Is it weird that when it’s clean on the outside and inside, I feel like it actually DRIVES BETTER?? Anyway, if you’re a mom you know that cars can become and explosion of gear for kids activities’, wrappers on the floor, water bottles galore, items to return to the store, artwork from school, etc. etc. I don’t know how it all gets in there but it does. I found the best method for me is to take things out of the car every day. This prevents buildup and a bigger mess down the road. When I get home, I make sure to grab at least a handful of items out of the car and put it back into the house or into the trash. If I miss a day or two, it seriously gets chaotic. I’m not talking full-car-details every day here – I’m just talking about emptying out the car. If every day seems unrealistic to you, pick a timeframe that works and try sticking to it (every other day, or once a week?) BONUS TIP : I keep a trashcan in the garage, not in the car, to make tossing things that much easier but not letting trash accumulate even more inside my car.
File-fold a drawer –
You can find my earlier post on this here, but if you want a quick way to feel super accomplished, file-fold your T-shirts, your baby’s onesies, your dish towels, your workout pants. Details on exactly how to do it is in the post, which still remains one of my most popular posts to date.
Set out things the night before –
My tip for an easy morning? Do everything the night before. One thing I recently installed are two, pretty gold hooks in the girls’ rooms that are for them to hang their outfit for the next day. I do this with my workout clothes and lunches and drinks for the next day, so why not outfits, too.
Do you like learning more about organizing tips? If this kind of stuff is totally up your alley or has been helpful, let me know below. And in the meantime you can find some of my earlier organizing posts here and here, to name a few!
Wishing you happiness in the home,