Becoming organised has so many benefits, and I have experienced these personally, when, a few years ago, I made the decision to declutter and organise my home and my life. It has not only changed how I feel, but has made our home a more relaxed place, and we can spend time on the things that really matter!
Here are some of the reasons I like being organised:
- Less stress and improved health and wellbeing
- It sets a good example for your kids
- It enables you to focus on your goals and what you want to achieve
- More time to relax and experience a better work-life balance
- More prepared in emergency or unforeseen circumstances
- You won’t feel as overwhelmed and feel free from chaos
- More productivity and more gets done around the house
- Hectic days feel more manageable and run smoother
Being organised means that you take something that might be messy and unordered and structure it in a specific way. The trap we can get caught in though is to organise the existing items we have, while still having too much. This is where decluttering comes in, and the joy of minimalism. I am not a minimalist by definition in my home, but I love the reasoning behind owning less material possessions and how this can lead to freedom from chaos and being overwhelmed.
We’ll look at how to declutter and organise more in depth in my next blog, but for now, here are some tips if you would like to get organised and are starting from scratch.
1. Start slowly. Organising and decluttering can take years, and it’s interesting to see how our homes can evolve over time as we learn to love living with less. I can be very sentimental and so it’s taken me years to let go of certain items, or to feel ok with keeping them (if they really mean a lot to me). Don’t force yourself to be ruthless with culling, but start slowly – plan to organise one drawer or one shelf or one cupboard one day, and then choose something the next day. Feel that sense of achievement, rather than becoming frustrated because everything you own in the kitchen is on the kitchen bench. A little each day will make a big difference over time.
2. Give everything a home. The old saying ‘a place for everything and everything in its place’ is so true – if items have a home, they are so much easier to put back when you tidy up (I’m finding this especially true for kids toys!) If items constantly find themselves onto the kitchen bench or other surfaces around the home, find them a permanent home, or simply get rid of them! As things come into your house, immediately find them a home.
3. ‘Don’t put it down, put it away!’ Rather than wait until your kitchen bench is chaotic to start finding homes for things or chucking/donating, get into the habit of deciding what to do with the item before you put it down. For example, as the mail comes in, decide whether it is something you can action immediately, whether it needs to be filed, or whether you can throw it away straight away.
4. Donate regularly. I like to have a permanent box or garbage bag just by my garage door and when I find an item that is in good condition that I no longer want or need, I place it in the bag or box and once it’s full, I drop it off at a charity shop. You could also use the strategy ‘one in, one out’ – for example when you purchase a new outfit, consider donating an old outfit.
5. Create a command centre, routines and learn to delegate. A command centre doesn’t have to be expensive or extensive, but simply having a place where your family can view upcoming events each week, such as a weekly planner or calendar, is super handy. Adding a menu plan, a morning or night routine chart and a chores list can be options as well. A chores list can help you delegate jobs, and if you aren’t doing all the jobs, you will have more time for decluttering (or self-care!)
Hopefully some of these tips will help you get started, or continue on your organising journey. Stay tuned for more tips on how to declutter and organise in the next blog. In the meantime, I’d love to know if you have any more tips to stay organised that work for your family – let me know in the comments below!
In last month’s blog post, I explored the benefits of becoming organised and some general tips for beginning your organising journey. A big part of organising, I believe, is learning to live with less.