Five Simple Steps to Getting Organized
Penny Catterall, Order Your Life
- Are you constantly running late because you can’t find your keys, wallet or phone?
- Are you spending extra money because you buy duplicates of things you know you already have but can’t locate?
- Do you run up late fees on credit cards because you forget to pay the bills?
- Are you buried in too much “stuff” that you know you don’t really need but feel compelled to buy – and keep – “just because”?
There are some simple, basic steps you can take to get started on the path to organization. But just like training yourself to reach a goal in physical fitness (such as losing a few pounds), it takes daily effort to reach your organizational goals. For example, you can’t organize a room or other space just once and expect it to remain that way without regular maintenance. You will need to build new habits in order to do consistently whatever needs to be done to stay organized. Here are a few easy steps to get you started.
- Have a landing zone for your incoming mail and process it at least twice a week. Make sure there is a large recycling bin close by for all the junk mail!
- Think before you print! Extra printed paper accounts for a great deal of the clutter that can quickly take over your desk. Save as a PDF whenever possible.
- Use the “one in, one out” rule. For every new item you bring into your house, something else has to leave. Keep a donation box or bag handy to put it in.
- Wait 24 hours before purchasing something online – leave it in your shopping cart and come back to it the next day. If you still really want it, then try to picture exactly where it will fit in your home. Only then should you hit “Buy.”
- “Clean as you go.” It only takes a few seconds to put one dish in the dishwasher, hang up one item of clothing, or file one piece of paper – and it’s so much easier than spending hours cleaning an entire room, or looking for something that’s hidden within a huge pile of papers.
By following even just one or two of these easy rules on a regular basis, you’ll be on your way to living a more organized and stress-free life!