If you want to know what state my mind is in, just look in my room. Some weeks I have my act together. The laundry is put up, the floor vacuumed, bathroom counter spotless and no lost items floating about the room. Then a week later my closet will seem to have exploded onto my floor/bed, bathroom items will have come to life and taken up residence all over the counter and you will look for casualties among the wreckage. I’m told I’m more of a type B personality than an A and I believe it. I give the illusion for an A because I lean a little bit on the control freak side. The lovely Debi who has helped me with my taxes these past few years once asked me “I’m only asking because I know you know this, how many miles are on your car?” I did in fact know that number and always do. I also love me some post it note to do list.( I may have just written a to-do list for all the people living in my house) Again, I’m a slight control freak about certain things but being neat isn’t one of them.
My to-do list is where the organization stops. You know why I make to do list? because waking up in the morning with a billion things running through my mind gives me anxiety. When I have too many things to do I can’t pick which one to start with. I’m more productive in the early hours of the day so I’m always wanting to cram it all in before lunch. The to do list calms my anxious little brain and reminds me I can in fact be productive past noon.
The reality is my room is a reflection of my brain. When I’m tired and worn down it shows. If I’ve had some rest and all is well in my word, my clothes don’t need the assistance of wrinkle release spray. In efforts to de-clutter and keep a more tidy space I’ve implemented a few organization life hacks to keep up my illusion of a type A neat freak. I’m just gonna fake it till I make it. So here are my efforts to be a little neater.
Step 1: Figure out what works. I’m a visual person and need to see my things. I hate drawers and have always struggled to keep them clean. I now hang all my important clothes in the closet. The only thing in drawers are sweats, workout clothes, pajamas and underwear. I also purchased a certain number of hangers which lends itself to regularly getting rid of clothes as new ones come in. I also purchased a lovely little over the door organizer for the bathroom. I originally purchased it as a need for space in my tiny little apartment bathroom. It’s made life easy and I’ve kept it despite having a nice size bathroom now. Only thing in drawers are toothbrush and toothpaste in one and the hair dryer and straightener in the other.
Step 2: I tend to compartmentalize my emotions (again, I really am not a total control freak) and I started compartmentalizing my things too. Everything has a home, Jars, baskets, boxes and anything that will hold something. If it has a home I can easily put it up by dumping it in its home. As for the bathroom I purchases a tray to set the boundary of where my crap goes. My space if filled with things that hold other things because it just looks a little neater. Most of my containment items were found, reused or on sale.
Step 3: Regular tidying up. This one still needs some work and again, on an easy calm week this is easier but come a busy draining week this is where the wheels fall off. Taking the few minutes to put something up correctly is saving me the big massive clean up day. I’ve also started just cleaning one thing or area at time. Today, the bathroom saw some love and it looks lovely. Later this week I’ll tackle the floors with the vacuum. I have cleaning rags/sprays on hand where I need them which has helped with the quick clean up.
Step 4: Purge items regularly. This is a work in progress at the May house. 20 years of living has lead to a lot of crap. I recently purged our kitchen cabinets of cups, pots and pans. I realized in my days of tiny living with no dish washer that if I had 10 cups I would just grab another one instead of cleaning the 2 that were already dirty. The less clean, ready to use items I have on hand the more incentive to clean what I just used. As an avid cooker I’m realizing you don’t really need all those fun fancy kitchen gadgets. Farewell souvenir stadium size cups and kitchen clutter.
step 5: Pre-sorted laundry. I bought one of those 3 laundry bag holders to sort laundry before the wash. This has helped majorly. I told you I compartmentalize just about everything so don’t act surprised. I even have packing cubes for travel. This has helped with step 3.
Again, I’m about 55% successful with all this and it’s a constant work in progress. As we all are. I admire my neat freak friends and I’ve always tried to figure out how they do it. I’ve concluded there’s no secret formula for all this or I’d be selling it and making millions like that lady who wrote the organization book. So here’s the plan: find what works and go with it! show yourself some grace because we all have a junk drawer or closet somewhere in the house.
Have a good organization tip? Let me know about it as I could use a few more!