Learn the simple but effective method for gaining traction and boosting your motivation when it comes to organizing your house and your life.
Sometimes the hardest part about getting organized is just getting started. I totally get it! But what if I told you that I had a quick little hack to turn procrastination into motivation and get the organizing momentum you need to get that snowball rollin’? Now this isn’t a get-organized-quick-scheme (see what I did there?) but this secret will at least get you excited about moving towards your organization goals. Ready?
How To Start Organizing
It’s actually pretty simple. Start small.
End of blog post. Mic drop. Later Toots!
But for real, you do need to start small. If you try to start your journey to a more organized lifestyle by pulling everything out of your kitchen cabinets, you’re going to be overwhelmed, cussing profusely, ordering home-delivery wine, and never speaking to me again.
You wouldn’t waltz right into a gym for the first time, booty-bump the biggest guy in the room out of the way, and squat 500 pounds, would you? That kitchen of yours is the 500 pound bar full of weights.
So how about organizing something small and working your way up to that big bad kitchen? Maybe it’s a junk drawer, or your dresser, or even your purse. Just seeing a small change will make you pumped to see what else you can do.
How To Choose Your Starting Point
So I know I just told you to start small. But there are so many small spaces in your home! How will you ever choose? Let me save you from the overwhelm and share my biggest secret.
When I am working with a new client, I always ask them this question: “What’s something that’s been bugging you lately?”
Have you had a Tupperware avalanche three times in two weeks? Did you have a minor freak-out sesh yesterday because your junk drawer looked like a landfill? Couldn’t find your craft scissors so you drove to the store and just bought another pair?
The biggest way to gain momentum and confidence in your decluttering and organizing goals is by making a change in one of these small but annoying spaces.
Think back over the last few days and try to remember something that really bugged you. And if you can’t think of anything, ask your spouse or kids. They’ll likely recall some kind of complaint you had recently.
Before you move on to the next step, take a photo of the space you chose. Don’t clean it up, don’t move anything at all. Just take a photo with your phone of the mess in all it’s glory. Just trust me on this.
Now Empty That Space
Whatever the small little area it is, empty it out completely. Every single thing. Even drawer liners or dividers or shelves. Clear out the whole damn thing.
Give the space a good cleaning using disinfectant and a shop vac if needed.
Once it’s all cleaned up, sort through the items you removed and see if anything doesn’t belong. You’ll likely find things that shouldn’t even be there, things that don’t work, or even some trash along the way. Weed out anything that shouldn’t go back into the space (and put them where they do go so they don’t clutter up a new space) so you can see what you’re workin’ with. *Cue the Missy Elliot lyrics now!*
Fill And Organize The Space Now
Now you can finally start reorganizing! As you’re filling back up the drawer or cabinet or closet or whatever area you chose, be extra considerate of how you actually use it.
Not how Pinterest says it should look, not how magazine photos are styled. How you, specifically you use the space. This may mean it won’t look Insta-worthy. It may mean you’ve got a pair of socks in your purse. And it may mean there’s a paint brush in your bathroom drawer. (Hey, I dunno how you use your bathroom!)
Add containers and boxes and organizers as you need them, but don’t stress over aesthetics. If all you have is a cut-up shoebox to use as a Tupperware lid holder, use it Girl! You can always switch it out later for something pretty, but I guarantee it will work exactly the same as an acrylic bin from The Container Store.
Take Another Photo
Ready to REALLY see the fruits of your labor? Take a new photo of the space from the exact same angle you took the first photo. This is known as a Before And After, and it’s the most motivating thing you’ll ever do. Seeing that side-by-side comparison of the real impact your mini project has made will leave you so stinkin’ excited to do this again.
Wanna really hold yourself accountable? Send me your before and after pics in an Instagram DM, Facebook Message, or Email. I’d love to see how you did, and offer you some personalized encouragement to keep going.
And check out this post for more info on Where To Start When You Don’t Know Where To Start
Every space matters when you have a small space to make as a workspace, and I wouldn’t say I like clutter around me. On the contrary, it irritates me, and I have a bad mood. So to be productive, a neat and organized workspace helps me. Thanks for this article. It helps me!
Brad Gandy says
We’re glad we could help. We spin in circles in a cluttered room and don’t get as much done as we would like, so we can relate.
Eric White says
yep i really needed that guide, things are all around my place :/
Brad - Admin says
I’m glad we could help, Eric.