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7 Easy Ways to Organize Your House

There’s no getting around it. Life is messy.

It’s precisely why house cleaners exist! (Hint hint.)

But beyond inevitable grime and gunk, do you struggle to keep your house organized between housekeeping visits? Are you racing to declutter your home the day before the house cleaning company arrives? Or, are heaps of paperwork, clothes, and toys collecting dust because they’ve been forgotten or ignored?

Don’t feel overwhelmed. It’s simply time to organize your home.

If being organized has never been your strong suit, or you’re currently just “blessed” with untidy kids—there are some surefire ways to break the pattern.

These seven strategies, paired with some positive thinking, are the best ways to stay organized and make your living space a happier one.

1. Make To-Do Lists

It’s a simple concept, but writing down what we want to achieve is often overlooked. For one, it takes extra time, and two, we already have many of our to-dos etched in our brains.

But don’t let this fool you. Even if you usually remember the dozens of things you must accomplish each day, writing them down still ensures they happen. As you get older, or when life is especially hectic, you’ll rely on your list more than ever.

And doesn’t it feel so good to check items off that list? (It does.)

2. Can’t Find Time? Schedule It

If you don’t carve out time for organization, it may always take the back burner.

Getting to work on time, helping kids with homework, volunteering, exercising, and even well-earned relaxation can all take priority over the clutter in your closet. And rightly so.

That’s why scheduling time for organization—and sticking to it!—can be the key to actually getting it done. Whether you use a physical planner or your smartphone calendar, set aside at least a few minutes each day to organize something in your home.

It’s as simple as a quick notation:

3:00 pm — Collect kids from school

3:10 pm — Organize junk drawer (while kids eat after-school snack)

3:20 pm — Drive to soccer practice

If organizing feels like a chore, dedicating a few minutes each day can feel less overwhelming than a large chunk of time. Who wants to spend all day on a sunny Saturday cleaning out the garage?

3. Be Practical About What You Undertake

You may have epic plans for your backyard, complete with a new deck and patio, a lush garden, and a koi pond. And you can’t wait to turn your unfinished basement into a guest space/entertainment center.

While you should absolutely make those dreams a reality, try to also focus on what you can do today.

Before you can even install the new deck, you have to kick your old patio furniture to the curb. Before you can renovate the basement, you need an alternate storage solution for your paint buckets and holiday decor.

Every big project has a series of baby steps. Once added up, they’ll go a long way.

4. Put Away Items As You Go

When you have ten bags of groceries between two hands, your mail under your chin, and your car keys dangling on your pinky finger, you’re ever so grateful when you can finally plop it all down on the counter.

But after putting your perishable groceries away, you’re immediately distracted by something else; the kids, the dog, your phone. The next morning, of course, you can’t find the new box of cereal, the mail, or your keys.

We all get pulled away from what we’re doing; life is full of small emergencies, and we’re endlessly preoccupied. Many of our tasks become disjointed and hard to keep track of. But the best way to avoid added chaos and keep things organized is to put items away as soon as possible—immediately after use.

This means storing the spices you just used for seasoning, even if you’re still cooking. It means training kids to put their toys away right after playing with them. And it means putting the folded laundry in drawers while it’s still warm.

Once cleaning-as-you-go becomes routine, you won’t even have to think about it. And, it’s an organizational lifesaver.

5. Learn to Let Go of “Stuff”

Organization isn’t possible without channeling at least a little Marie Kondo.

For many, the KonMari Method is a tad extreme. That’s okay; it isn’t necessary to ditch everything that fails to “bring you joy,” especially if you have trouble detaching yourself from material items or have hoarding tendencies.

But fewer items in your house will always equal less organization. And donating unused/unliked items can feel like a physical cleanse.

Simplicity can be hard to mentally accept. There are so many things we think we need in our highly commercialized society. But less can truly be easier.

6. Identify a “Home” for Everything

If everything has a home, you won’t spend half your time figuring out where to put it all.

Identifying a place to store things takes some upfront investment. It may require a quick trip to Ikea for additional cabinets. But once everything has a home, piles will fail to accumulate as quickly.

For odds and ends, you can also invest in storage bins. But here’s the catch: you don’t want each storage bin to become yet another junk drawer that you have to organize later. To avoid this, use labels for your storage and combine similar items/paperwork as much as possible as you place them inside.

7. Enlist Help Among the Littlest Ranks

We live in a modern world where partners help each other organize and clean. But kids, too, should be expected to contribute around the house. They are part of the family, and this is their space, too!

Think about a classroom. Every student has to pitch in to keep their desk clean. The same concept should apply at home.

So, don’t hesitate to train your kids to do age-appropriate tasks. When organization becomes a part of their daily lives, the more responsible and confident they’ll be. And your house will thank you for it!

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