Top 10 Tips To Organize Your Home
I once saw a cartoon that showed a couple on a picnic blanket in a park. The blanket was loaded with food, baby bottles and toys. The caption underneath read,”I feel I’m forgetting something,” with no baby anywhere in sight.
Being organized can often be about pausing, planning and getting that birds-eye-view so that everything you can think of gets included.
The best tips to organize your home are simple, quick and easy to apply.
These daily organizing actions can quickly turn into habits saving you
- massive amounts of time
- creating peace of mind
- and radically decreasing the chaos in your life
SMALL ORGANIZING ACTIONS
Small organizing actions are the seeds of creating an organized home and little steps are what success is all about.
Daily routines, little rituals, creating designated places for things and taking a few minutes to make space to get organized can rapidly propel you to creating order in your home.
Just a warning, organizing feels so good and the rewards are so great it can be addictive and once you follow these organizing tips and experience the benefits organizing brings, you’ll want to organize more!
- USE A LARGE FAMILY CALENDAR
The first organizing tip is to purchase a large family calendar. Use one calendar for your family, hang it where everyone can see it, list everyone’s activities and check it daily in the morning and update it around dinner time.
These two simple steps, write and check, saves all those, “why didn’t you tell me” and “I don’t have time,” giving you ample choices to prepare for events, prioritize what you are realistically able to do and to say no when you need it.
This one minute activity will make your calendar an organizational hub where you can see at a glance how busy the week will be. The key to success is to get everyone to list their activities so the calendar is always up to date.
- ELIMINATE ALL YOUR PAPER CLUTTER
A second important organizing tip is to begin to eliminate all your paper clutter. Buy an A4 notebook and start to write your do lists, messages, and small bits of information in the one notebook. Next time you need to look for that one off address or the phone number of the plumber your friend recommended it will be recorded in your notebook.
Writing all information in one place means you no longer loose it, no longer have to look for it and saves you countless hours of frustration over time as well as decreasing paper pile ups. The key to success is to put it in an accessible place with a pen.
- TAKE TIME OUT
A third critical tip is to take time out. No, this isn’t the same time out you may give your children. This time out is taking ten uninterrupted minutes whenever it suits you to plan and organize your day. This little ritual done consistently can save you hours in the week and is your time to make clear cut decisions.
Some of these decisions may be: what has to be picked up, paid, or bought. Who has to be picked up, driven to or called? What can be delegated, where do I need help?
What tasks can be done together to save time and money. What tasks can be done on other days. Make this list realistic, manageable and something you can complete.
- PRIORITIZE YOUR TASKS
The key to success is to prioritize your tasks. List the five most important things you need to do and make sure one of them is just for you. This can be time to work on a goal, go for a walk, and talk to a friend. Setting aside a few moments to focus on your goals is an instant self esteem booster and gets you in organizing mode.
This organizing tip may be the shift you need to decrease your household workload and eliminate unproductive busy time.
Just deciding what needs to be done daily weekly or monthly and what you can delegate is a huge success step to an organized home. Try it for thirty days and see what happens.
- PUT A GROCERY LIST ON YOUR REFRIGERATOR
One of the biggest time consumers and money wasting areas is the kitchen. An easy tip to implement is to put a grocery list on your refrigerator and get your entire family to fill it in when they see a food needs replacing.
This habit takes seconds and of all the home organization tips this one can have the biggest time saving, money saving impact. The key to success is to take a minute to check the list, say after dinner, and add what food needs to be replaced in the next shop.
What is wonderful about this is when shopping day comes around your list is almost finished, you have a grocery list tailored to what is being consumed which can eliminate unnecessary buying. You eliminate frequent runs to the grocery store and this will save you time and money.
- START A DAILY ORGANIZING ROUTINE
A top tip is to start a daily organizing routine that includes the entire family. One of the easiest routines is a daily family pick up. Select ten minutes after dinner, set a timer and for ten minutes every member of your family picks up and puts away.
This saves you hours of housework a week, encourages teamwork and with a little music can be a fun activity to do. Most kids can cope with ten minutes of picking up and just starting this as a family quickly morphs into an unconscious habit and often you will find when the ten minutes are up everyone keeps on working! If you want to reclaim hours of time start this today.
Creating visual cues is important in the organizing process and making beds in the morning is a must to shift to an organized home.
This may sound ridiculous but a neatly made bed sets a visual standard that is contagious. A room with a well made bed makes any clutter, junk or mess really stand out and a lot harder not to pick up. This is the best habit to get your family into. The key to success is to get the beds made before you get busy with the morning tasks.
- GET INTO THE HABIT OF PUTTING CLOTHES AWAY
A great tip to getting organized is to get into the habit of putting clothes away. It takes seconds to put clothing in a laundry hamper, hang in a closet or put in a drawer but it can take you hours a week to put away piles of clothing.
If this is a clutter and organizing issue for your family use your ten minute pick up routine as a putting away clothing time.
The key to success is to first model putting away and taking care of your clothes and then set aside a minute or two after school, or before bed to remind your family of their new organizing habit. Soon it will become automatic so stick with it.
- ORGANIZE YOUR FINANCES
Good money management is critical to living a successful organized life and a financial organizing tip is to put your bills in one place. If you loose bills, incur late fees make this a priority.
The key to success is to set up reminders on your calendar in red, on your computer, post it note what ever you need to do to pay bills on time. Late fees are a total waste of time and a source of unnecessary guilt and friction.
Organizing your bills in a file, binder or drawer in a designated place is a baby step towards clutter free and organized money management. This puts your bills in order for easy access and psychologically begins to create clarity around your finances.
- RECONNECT TO SOMEONE YOU VALUE
A wonderful organizing tip is to reconnect to someone you value. This may be non busy time with your children where you talk and listen, call a friend to say hi, coffee alone in the morning with your husband or wife, or just wishing some one well.
Make a connection of value every day that is heartfelt and fulfilling. Wake up before your children to talk with your partner, plan a dinner out, meet a friend for lunch or go to the art gallery, complement someone you know. Make a connection of value a daily habit.
Feelings of connection and wellbeing are uplifting and energizing and give your organizing attitude a huge energy boost.
- PLAN REWARDS FOR YOURSELF
The most enjoyable home organization tip of all is to reward yourself and celebrate your success for the shifts in thinking and the actions you are taking to make life easier.
Organizing is all about making the time, money and space to enjoy and make the most of your life. Make sure to include in your time out something you want to do personally for yourself. Decluttering and organizing are feel good activities and choosing to reward yourself and celebrate every step you take in the clutter free and organizing journey just makes it better.
To summarize top tips to organize your home that take just minutes while decreasing your workload and increasing your well being are:
- Family calendar to organize family and payments
- A4 Notebook to keep information in one place
- Time out to get your thoughts in order and five task list that includes a goal for your wellbeing
- Grocery List on the refrigerator, filled out daily, to save money, time and effort with food shopping
- Ten minute family organizing routine to get the house picked up
- Make beds as a visual cue to create a sense or order
- Put clothes away daily, this means laundry too
- File bills and write due date on calendar to begin clutter free organized money management
- Reconnect to someone you value
- Reward yourself and celebrate your success
The most important tip on getting organized is that success is really a moment away and unless you try it and give it 100% you will never know if it could really work for you.
These 10 tips are short cuts to your organizing success and creating a home and a life that really works well for you. Start one or start all of the organizing tips today so you can work smarter not harder and enjoy life more.
Copyright ©2009 Jane Alais