Sometimes, we are highly motivated to transform our life, in a variety of ways: health, finances, family dynamics, or organizing. Perhaps we have seen something to inspire us, or have had an incident that forces change. Either way, without the right tools and information, inspiration alone will not suffice.
Therefore, I would like to present you with three ways to fail at organizing.
- Try to tackle too large of an area. How large is too large? That depends on whether you are working alone, with one person, or perhaps a group of people. It also depends on how much clutter is present. If you simply dive in a start mentally making decisions and perhaps shuffling things as you go, then you have not truly changed your space. Let’s say you are organizing your kitchen. You pull out dishes, pot and pans, serving pieces and an old vase. You take the vase to the hall closet, but it too, is full. Next, you pull towels, linens and an old food processor out of the closet. Now, there is room for the vase – but not the food processor, which you take back to the kitchen. You see dishes, pots and pans all over the counters, and no room for the food processor. So, you put all of the pots and pans where they were, leave the food processor on the counter, shove everything back into the hall closet…and give up. This leads us to reason #2.
- Wait until “later” to decide. Ask yourself this: is your decision-making going to be any easier next week or next month? Naturally, it is easier to make decisions in some categories than others. If you have several sections of you house that need attention, then start with the area that has the least amount of sentimental value for you and build from there. Seeing progress and building momentum can often give you motivation to tackle more difficult areas.
- Don’t get rid of the donations and discards. Sorting is not enough; you must eliminate excess in order to make room for what you use and love. At the end of each work session, follow through with your discards. Take out the trash right away, and move your donations and recyclables to your car, so that you can drop them off next time you are doing errands.
Simply put, moving stuff around does not change your space. The only way to stay organized is to balance the volume of your space with the volume of your belongings, so that everything you own has an official home.