Indecisive woman shrugging

10 Organizing mistakes |How to avoid them

Plan ahead (freedigitalphotos.net Breaking Pic)

Organizing mistake: No plan or preparation before you start.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Write out specific goals for each area before you begin.
  • Determine what and who you will need to achieve these goals.

Organizing mistake: Unrealistic goals  – resources, time available, energy, help.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Get accurate information about how long each project will take.
  • Recruit help for physically demanding or emotionally wrenching items.
Reuse empty containers before you buy new ones.

Organizing mistake: Purchase containers, bins, file folders, etc. before you organize.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Go through the decluttering process before you organize any space.
  • Repurpose containers, bins and baskets that are no longer used.

Organizing mistake: Trying to work in multiple areas at the same time.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Minimize distractions by focusing on one area at a time.
  • Create separate bins for items that will be: discarded, recycled, donated, consigned, repaired, or will end up in a different room (things you will keep).

Organizing mistake: Decluttering difficult to decide items first. Photos, memorabilia.

Sentimental items on shelves
Sentimental items are more difficult (Image: Outside In Organizer and Makeovers)

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Begin with items that are easier to make decisions about keeping or letting go.
  • Spend shorter amounts of time working on photos and sentimental items.

Organizing mistake: Laboring over decisions.

Not sure? Keep it for now.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Make decisions quickly whenever possible.
  • If you are unsure about it, put it in the “keep” pile. Go through the “keeps” at least 1 more time in the near future.

Organizing mistake: “Maybe” pile.

How to avoid the “maybe” pile:

  • Avoid procrastination. Keep it and if you don’t use or need it within a set time period you can let it go.
  • Avoid all or none thinking. If you love your 12 piece place setting but don’t use it, keep half of it and use it. You don’t have to let all of it go. If you love the suit but never wear suits, keep the jacket and wear it with jeans.

Organizing mistake: Leaving donations sitting around.

Take donations away asap!

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Take donations out to your car and drop them off after you are done.
  • Arrange pick up of larger loads and items asap.

Organizing mistake: Unrealistic worth of item.

How to avoid this mistake:

  • Check reliable resale websites and online auctions for same or similar items.
  • Be prepared for today’s pricing rather than what you spent on it or think it’s worth.

Organizing mistake: Won’t let go of “good intentions” items.

Handmade quilt. Will you make one?

How to avoid this mistake, future projects:

  • Consider how long it will take to buy the scrapbook materials and make the book. Do you have the time? Do you have similar items that are not used or displayed. Would you really enjoy having another one?
  • Hire someone to repurpose the item. You can still enjoy the item in its new form without having to make it yourself.