Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Some Easy Organizing Tips I Didn't Figure Out Until Adulthood

I'll freely admit that I am your standard Type A. I like there to be a place for everything and I want everything in its place.

While that may make me laughable in the eyes of some people, I'll argue that my philosophy just plain makes life easier. Unfortunately, I didn't figure that out until I was midway through my 20s, so I did spend some of my adult years kind of floundering around wondering why everything I had to do took so darn long.

Here's the new me:

organization

When I'm organized - when life is organized - I'm just happier and more centered. Not that accidents and chaos and 'what the hecks' don't happen, of course. It's just that when I have all my ducks in a row, dealing with those things is just a lot easier.

So I'm wondering: Are you feeling off kilter in your life? If so, maybe some of the little organizing tips I figured out late in life might help you like they helped me. Here are just some of them ...
  • Stashing a full jug of water near the cats' dishes - which are nowhere near a faucet. The poor things' water dishes would routinely dry out because carting them upstairs was a big pain in the butt. You can expand on this by putting like with like in different situations, which makes having to do things of all kinds exponentially easier.
  • Keeping work clothes separate from play clothes. My nicer tops and bottoms are hanging in the closet; everything else is stuffed (I'm sorry to say) into drawers. I even keep my work clothes sequestered in the wash so I can wash, dry, fold, and put away everything I need for work in sequence without having to dig through other laundry to find it.
  • Storing Tupperware containers with the lids on. As tempting as it is to nest food storage containers, that leads to a game I like to call "Digging for Lids". Which is not conducive to easy to navigate cabinets. I Freecycled a whole lot of Tupperware - basically everything that would no longer fit if every container was stacked with lids on - and still have more than enough. No more lost lids!
  • Cleaning up the kitchen before bed. Even just a little bit of a wipe helps things feel not so trashy the next morning. Yes, sometimes the dishes sit overnight. In fact, I am going home to a sink full of dishes in just a few minutes. But the counters are clean, as is the stove. Clutter won't be greeting me.
  • Carrying a notebook and writing things down. I'm already carrying a giant handbag wherever I go, and now that diapers aren't taking up valuable space, I have room for a biggish notebook. It's my to-do list. It's where I log hours when I'm working away from my home computer. It's what helps me keep track of appointments and social engagements. Without it, I'd be lost. Alternately, use a tablet. I just happen to like paper.
  • Laying out clothes and other things the night before. It seems so simple, so I don't know why it took me so long to figure out that taking 5 minutes to put out what I'd need the next day (like a ready to rock coffee maker) will save me 15 minutes or more of struggling to pick an outfit or find my phone.
That's all the little organization tips I can think of right now - what are some of your must-do organization tips?

5 comments:

  1. When things are cluttered or unorganized it makes me really frazzled and flustered. Once a tupperware loses its lid it gets tossed and I always take the time to set up my lunch, coffee, and outfit for the next day the night before. It really does make the mornings more seamless. I also keep a little basket by the foot of the stairs when you first walk in the house as a sort of catchall. We toss our keys, gloves, flyers, whatever in there so it doesn't clutter up the house.

    Great tips.

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  2. Cleaning up the kitchen the night before and carrying the notebook around are two of my big ones. I love your one about not nesting tupperware. Totally.

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  3. I actually do a lot of these - my work clothes are all hanging in the closet alone and my other clothes are stuffed into drawers, into hampers, more hampers...more hampers. lol Note to self: the pre-Cmas charity bags of clothing did not make a dent. I wash them separately too, store bowls with lids...lol. Clean kitchen before bed and before going anywhere. Hate coming home or waking up to a gross kitchen. Yep. I am anal. lol

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  4. I'm big on the notebook too. Another thing I've done for years is plan the week's dinners on one day. It's annoying but then requires only 1 big shopping and then no thought for the rest of the week - I know what each day will bring (including nights of take out) and which nights I need to pick up a perishable/last minute item that couldn't be purchased in advance.

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  5. We must be sisters from different misters because I am the same way. An organized life is a happy life!

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