When you are considering what to organize in your home, very often the major rooms in the house come to mind. This typically includes your bedroom closet, pantry, storage room, and office. While all of these are very important and should absolutely be organized, it is extremely helpful to also have the less common areas at the forefront of your mind as well. All my clients have expressed how overwhelming organizing their home can be because there is too much to do at once. This anxiety and stressfulness consumes them and prevents any project from even beginning. By addressing some of the smaller areas you would normally leave to last, or areas you may not feel are big enough, you will feel accomplished and proud as you start checking things off. Sometimes starting with a few small projects is just the trick to get you going on your organizing journey.
September is a great month to start working on these five cluttered areas. It sets the perfect environment to get in the mood to organize! The windows are open, your warm latte is by your side and a cool breeze gently brushes through your home. Now it is time to start organizing, so your home can be cozy, clean, and organized for the fall and winter months.
Here are 5 places you should be organizing…
1.) YOUR CAR
For a place you spend so much of your time, it should be clean, tidy and organized
- Cheerios, crumbled receipts, coins, clothes, empty water bottles, and pens are all too common items that fill one’s car. However, a car is meant for one purpose – to help you get from point A to point B. Instead, it becomes yet another place to dump things.
- Every time you park the car in your garage, take five minutes to empty your car. Five minutes is all it takes to pick out the garbage, and have it tidy and clean for tomorrows ride!
- Some great organizing tools are:
A. Car garbage bag
B. A case for loose change
C. A trunk organizer
D. Small pocket size file organizer for registration, insurance card and manual
E. A small bag (place in the trunk organizer) to hold all your car fresheners
2.) YOUR PURSE
You will feel like you can conquer the world with an organized purse!
- A woman’s purse is the mother load of dumping grounds for anything you can imagine. Did you ever lift a woman’s purse? It can weigh more than a small child. It is important to create a daily routine and habit of de-cluttering your purse. When you get home from work, dump your purse out. You will be shocked to see exactly what you hoard inside that purse on a daily basis. Once you dump your purse out, throw away any garbage or receipts you don’t need, put away anything that does not belong, and then put the rest of the items back inside neatly.
- Once you start doing this every day, the process will get quicker and quicker. It will come to a point where you might not even need to dump it every day. There may be a few loose things here and there, but nothing too overwhelming.
- My favorite tip is to buy small pouches and designate them to a category of things. For example, I have a small pouch for all my chapstick and lipstick, and another pouch that holds my hair clips, hair ties, nail file, compact mirror and medicine. I strongly suggest a small compact accordion folder for coupons, receipts and gift cards.
3.) YOUR BOOKS
There is nothing better than cozying up with a blanket, a cup of coffee and a good book you chose from your organized home library
- Books, books and more books! Books you have never read, books from college, books from friends, and books you keep saying you will read, but never will. It is time to organize them! Most importantly, gather them all into one place.
- Put them into categories based on genre (ex: literature, self–help, biography, spiritual, non–fiction, fiction). Once they are categorized go through EACH and every single book. If you love books (like me), build a mini library for yourself and organize them using the same categories you created. If you are the type of person to only read a book once, be grateful for the story that was brought into your life and donate it. Many libraries, schools, churches and charities accept books. Check to see if there is a local book drop off site in your area.
4.) YOUR PEN & PENCIL DRAWER
With an organized pen and pencil drawer, you will always be ready to write down all your brilliant ideas!
It is amazing how many pens, pencils, and markers can accumulate in one’s home! How do so many get inside your home? It is inevitable that more will come into the house, and the drawer will get a bit cluttered more than once. However, it is important to have a system in place so you can easily sort through it at least once a year.
- Dump the entire drawer out. Yes, it will create a massive mess, but I promise it will all be OK. Sort into piles such as pens, pencils, erasers, rulers, markers, sharpies, highlighters.
- Take out a piece of paper and start scribbling. You have to check and make sure all the pens and markers still write. Throw out anything that is dry.
- This is one of the categories you may feel bad about getting rid of, but you do not need a hundred pens. It’s just not necessary. A good way to measure how many you need is how many fit in your hand. A healthy handful of pens is the perfect amount!
- Visit Home Goods, Target, Bed Bath and Beyond or the Container Store to buy some drawer compartments. It is essential to organize your supplies by category. Even the highlighters should be separate from the markers. Each should be in its own group.
5.) YOUR WALLET
A wallet holds extremely valuable items, and should be organized to show respect for what is inside
- Does your wallet look more like a stuffed burrito than a sleek, organized wallet? Credit cards, gift cards, money, receipts (from months ago), bank receipts, and rewards cards end up taking up so much space that many people cannot even close their wallets.
- Keep your most used credit and debit cards accessible. Any others that you do not use often can go all together in one of the empty slots.
- Your license should be in one spot at all times so you never lose it. Most wallets have a clear slot that is meant for your license so you can always see it quickly.
- Make sure all your money is flat and not crumbled, and organized from the lowest bill to the highest bill.
- One or two gift cards to places you visit often can be kept in your wallet, but most of them can be left at home until you decide you are going to go shopping. For example, you would keep a Starbucks, Chipotle, or Target gift card in your wallet, but leave gift cards to the mall at home since you probably won’t be there unexpectedly.