1. Start small; break tasks down into manageable steps. Tackle one drawer, one cabinet, or one pile of papers per day. You’ll have a sense of accomplishment with little effort.
2. Give your things a home. Think logically and sort things by function. Put coffee cups and filters near the coffee pot, pad and pencil near the phone, remote near the television.
3. Arrange objects according to how often you use them. You use 20% of your things 80% of the time, so keep that 20% in prime space. Keep close at hand anything you need every day and store infrequently used things farthest away. And if you never use it get rid of it!
4. Keep sets together as much as possible: clothing sets, jewelry, sheets, games. Anything that requires another part to operate should be stored with all its parts together (or very near).
5. Decide on a single, consistent planner (paper or digital) and use it to schedule all of your appointments, calls, etc. And don’t over-schedule! Plan no more than 75% of your day so you’ll have time for interruptions and unexpected problems.
6. Consolidate similar activities. Run all errands at once (and plan them logistically) and return all calls at once. If not you’ll zigzag and waste precious time.
7. When you buy advance tickets to an event keep them in your wallet or a place where you’ll see them regularly, and mark the event in your appointment book (that single, consistent one!).
8. If you like a magazine article, cut it out, file it, and throw the magazine away. Only subscribe to publications you love and read. Ask to be taken off junk mail lists by writing to DMA, Mail Preference Service, P. O. Box 643, Carmel, NY 10512. Or call them at 212-768-7277.
9. Create extra hidden spaces under tables in any room with table skirts. Keep bathroom accessories behind a skirted sink; store stuff under your bed in rolling containers with a dust ruffle to hide it all.
10. Organizing is an ongoing process. Once you’ve created a place for everything, try to return each item to its designated spot as soon as you can. We get overwhelmed when things pile up so create time every day to spend a few minutes organizing your papers, your belongings and your thoughts.
By clearing physical clutter you’ll clear the clutter in your mind. Keep your life organized and you will find more energy and clarity in every day.
Rosemary Chieppo has been a professional organizer, writer and public speaker since 1999. The costs of not being organized are enormous: time, money and stress. Organizing is the greatest gift people can give themselves; it clears the path to life’s more important destinations! Visit Rosemary's website at http://www.borntoorganize.com