As I enter my thirties, I can’t help but think about how far I’ve come in my life. I owe a lot of my growth to being and staying organized.
As a professional organizer, I tell all my clients that organizing is the key to succeeding in anything, seriously! Whether you’re a mom, a bachelor, a professional, or married, you need to be organized in order to run a clutter-free and stress-free life.
After you become organized, your house will truly become a home. A house is just a dwelling; a home is a sanctuary of peace and order. My goal is to have every one of my clients walk through their newly transformed home and feel compelled to dance in every room. Yes, DANCE!
I typically give my clients homework before our first session together. I tell them to read, front-to-back, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo.
In the book, Kondo states that an entire life and home revamp takes 6 to 12 months. You’re probably thinking, “Wow, that’s a long time” or, “who has that kind of time?” but what’s 12 months compared to an entire lifetime of playing catch up?
I recommend starting a prioritized, written list of everything you want to accomplish in your house. Write down everything that has been clogging your brain and nagging at you to get done. Now is the time to get it out of your head and put it on paper. (For more task management advice, check out To Do, or Not to Do…)
Next, it’s time to look at your schedule and carve out a weekly time-slot to start accomplishing this list. Don’t make excuses, just DO it. Recognize that this will take time, especially if you have a full time job, a house full of kids, etc…
I revamped my home in 2014 and can honestly say that taking the time each week and clearing out anything and everything that didn’t bring me joy has changed my life. My apartment may be small, but every inch of this house is now my HOME.
Marie Kondo’s book offers tangible solutions to make this dream a reality with easy, simple-to-follow steps. I have implemented many of these steps into my practice and it helped me transform my personal space.
Here are three of my favorite solutions from her book:
1. Put every item you own into categories, and store each category in one location
Take everything you own and sort it into a few key categories, such as “office supplies” or “cosmetics.” Next, do your best to keep each category in a single location in your home. The process of putting your belongings into categories allows you see what you own all at once and makes everything simple to find. Keeping each category together in one location allows you to easily take inventory and purge any extras that crop up during the categorization process.
2. Remove any item from your house that doesn’t bring you joy!
This may sound silly or even impossible, but trust me when I say that it’s achievable! Marie Kondo’s method is to go through every belonging you own and to ask yourself one simple question: “Does this spark joy?” If the answer is no, get rid of it. This simple exercise is a game changer, folks. After you categorize your belongings, you’ll be surprised how many things you find that you can’t wait to get rid of. Talk about refreshing! For more tactics on decluttering, check out 3 Decluttering Tactics That Will Transform Your Life.
3. Learn to File Fold your clothing and linens
If you’ve never heard of this folding method, fear not! There’s a great tutorial on Just a Girl and Her Blog.
Knowing how to file fold is an essential, simple technique that will change your drawers for the better. File folding your clothes, linens or other fabrics will save you so much space. By using this folding method, you’ll be able to see all of your clothes at once–something you probably didn’t think was possible, did you?
I recommend this book because it really does live up to its title, “The Life-Changing Magic,” because these methods are truly life-changing. Once you follow her steps and give every item a designated home, staying tidy will come naturally and easily!
About the author: As a celebrity executive assistant, Jen mastered the art of to-do lists, time management, and efficient systems. She began changing lives professionally by putting organizational communication into real world practices and personal situations. After realizing the impact her systems had on an individual’s life, she decided to spread her knowledge and change lives by eliminating stress and clutter. Jen’s organizing company, Life in Jeneral, was born in 2014 to fulfill a lifelong passion of bringing joy to those around her through the tools of organization. Learn more at LifeinJeneral.com.