Every January you spend weeks purging your stuff, buying every basket in the aisle at Target, making cute little labels, and color coordinating your closet. You put everything in it’s own container, line up all your bathroom supplies, and perfectly stack every single towel in the house. And by March it’s a freaking disaster.
What’s the deal? Why can’t you keep things organized? Let me let you in on a secret. You’re doing it all wrong.
You Aren’t Involving Your Family
Putting everything in separate little cups in the bathroom, grouping pantry items by expiration date, organizing office supplies by importance…none of that matters if you’re the only person that knows about it. You can organize your house all day long, but unless everyone else that lives in it knows, understands, and agrees to your system, it’s going to go right back to the mess you started with in a month’s time.
You’ve Got Too Much Stuff
Sure, you organized it all. But organization can only go so far. Your house is only so big. You may have spent an entire weekend categorizing your closet, but the first time you do a full load of laundry, things never end up where they were before. By really cutting down on your stuff, you won’t need to organize it anymore. Everything will have a home and a space to belong. There will be no need to organize your pens by color, ink type, and preferred paper. You’ll just have a few pens. Simple, right?
You Don’t Have A System
Putting things in baskets doesn’t count as a system, and lining stuff up on shelves doesn’t count either. Organization isn’t just about containers and shelving. It’s about putting things in a place where they can be found easily and quickly. By grouping things together based on category and usefulness, you’ll be able to grab what you need way faster.
Consider your cleaning supplies. You might have them all lined up on a shelf based on their function. But you get lazy and eventually they all are just a cluster on the shelf again. Why not A. Cut down on the amount and specialty cleaners you own and opt for all purpose ones instead, and B. Keep your newly downsized collection in a caddy with a handle? They’re all clustered together, but in a container you can carry from room to room.
You Don’t Have A Routine
Life works a lot more smoothly when you have routines. They give us structure and balance. And when you’ve got a routine, you habitually do the things you need to do. By developing good routines and habits, you won’t even think about letting the mail pile up, because you routinely sort through it and put it where it belongs.
You Impulse Shop
“But it was on sale!” doesn’t cut it anymore. You’re reading about getting organized because you bought too much stuff in the first place. When you’re out shopping, before you buy anything at all, think to yourself “do I have somewhere to keep this?” If you can’t think of a dedicated home almost immediately, you probably don’t need it. All those cute little things in the Target Dollar Spot seem great at the time, but when you bring home a bag full of jars and post it notes and mini-chalkboards, you end up just shoving them into a closet somewhere.
You Lack Self-Discipline
Ouch, that’s a tough one to hear. But think about it for a minute. How many times have you grabbed the scissors from the office to open a package. You open it in the living room, get so excited about your new happy mail, then just lay the scissors down on the end table. You think “I’ll put them away later.” Days roll by and you still haven’t put them away, but by now there are other things piled up on that table, too.
You get another package, get so excited to open it up, hurry to the office, and oops, no scissors. Where the heck are the scissors??? You totally don’t remember now, so you tear through the house for thirty minutes making an even bigger mess looking for them. Sound familiar? If you had just disciplined yourself to always put things back where they belong after using them, you’d never deal with that nonsense again. #realtalk
Ready To Get Organized For Real This Time?
Download my 30 Day Organization Challenge to get a jump start on getting your home into shape, once and for all. I break down quick and easy tasks to do each day for a month, resulting in a noticeably more tidy home. By taking it one step at a time, you won’t get overwhelmed and you won’t get burnt out.
You can grab your free copy of the 30 Day Organization Challenge by popping in your email address below. Then I’ll send it straight to your inbox. And be sure to leave a comment at the bottom of the post to share what your own reasons for not staying organized are. Your comment may just help someone else!