Home organization can be a massive task to take on, so much so that you may avoid it far too long because you are afraid of just how long it will take. However, as you probably already know, the more clutter you let build up, the less motivated you’ll be to clean it! Trust me, we’ve all been there. No judgment here.
The good news is that organizing your home doesn’t have to take weeks or months. And once it is complete, you will be rewarded with a neat and tidy home where you can find any item when you need it. That will be worth the time and effort you spend organizing now. After that you can tackle the task of keeping it tidy.
The following steps will help you master the art of organizing your home and creating a place that works with you and your household, not against it.
Declutter before your organize
There is no use in organizing items you aren’t using. Start by doing a deep cleaning of all your belongings throughout your home. Start in one area and move to the next if that’s easier for your mind. Getting your home organized is much easier when you are only storing the items you really want.
Don’t feel you need to get rid of everything, or that you can’t keep your most precious items. Just let go of anything that you don’t use often, haven’t seen in years, or can live without. You may find it easier to let go of more stuff as you continue organizing, especially if you watch “Tidying Up” or “Hoarders” on Netflix while you’re cleaning. 😉
Everything needs a home
A good rule of thumb is that every single item you own should have a space where it belongs. This is really the only way good home organization will work. If you have too many things and not enough space, you can’t possibly keep things from getting too cluttered and chaotic. Only keep the items you most love and cherish – or that spark the most joy within you and your family.
Take it one room at a time
Organizing your entire home is much easier when you break it down into manageable chunks. Start with just one room in the home. The main living areas are ideal to begin with, as you may be moving things from these rooms to bedrooms or closets. By doing this first, you eliminate the need to re-organize other rooms later. You also get some small wins under your belt, which can create a snowball effect to help you keep moving along with your organizing tasks.
In the first room, start on the floor and work your way to the ceiling. Clean out every single drawer and shelf. Make sure that room is completely finished before you move elsewhere. You may feel like you should stop organizing the DVD racks and go clean out the kitchen junk drawer. However, moving around the house like this is less productive and adds more work for you in the long run. Plus, moving your focus around is what starts to become overwhelming for many.
Once you’ve organized a room, if something needs to be put into an already cleaned room, make sure you put it all the way away in that room. This keeps you from having to go back and reclean areas. No need to do double the work, right?
Organizing your decluttering
When you start to declutter, you will want an assortment of bags, tote boxes, or bins to help you out. Label these based on what you plan on doing with their contents. A great method for labeling is “Keep, Donate, Sell, Trash”. Everything you declutter from the rooms in your home should fit into these bins.
You may need more than one box for a particular category, and that’s okay. It means you are working hard to declutter so you can live in an organized home. Create a relocation center in your home for the items that you plan to get rid of. All full boxes should be moved here until they can be removed from the home. An attic, garage, basement, or storage shed are ideal places to relocate your unwanted stuff.
Find hidden storage opportunities
As you are decluttering and cleaning, look for ways you can store the items you plan to keep. Wall shelving is probably the best way to find more space to house your belongings. Often, closets and bookcases are overloaded while the walls are bare and in need of some shelves to better organize things.
Under the bed is another great location for storage. Don’t simply toss shoes, out of season clothing, or toys under there, though. Get bins and label them with what they hold to keep things better organized. That way, things can stay in their proper places and be easy to find when needed.
Baskets can transform the shelves in your pantry or bathrooms to hold more items than before. Specific baskets in your kitchen may hold K-cups, tea bags, or kids snacks. In the bathroom, baskets can hold small toiletries items like toothpaste, tissues, or cotton swabs. Using this technique gives you more space, but also makes you feel more organized and makes transporting items a lot easier, too!
Get the family involved
Home organization should never be a one person job. You didn’t clutter the house all by yourself, so why clean it alone? Get the entire family involved in the process to take some of the workload off yourself. Plus, when everyone is pitching in to organize the home, they are more likely to take pride in their work and keep it looking great. It also saves you the hassle of the “hey, where’s this?” questions you’re bound to get later on.
Emphasize the importance of every item needing a home, and that unnecessary items should not be kept. While you are working on the main living spaces, create bins for the kids to sort their toys, clothing, and shoes. That way, you can just do a quick runthrough of the bins later, cutting down on the time you spend decluttering the bedrooms. The kiddos will be happy with where all of their things are.
Home organization doesn’t have to be so scary if you go about it the right way. Just break down the task into manageable chunks and remind yourself of how great it will be once everything is decluttered and has a home. What’s your best organization hack that you practice within your