Hmm, ever thought about clutter prevention? It is easier for some of us than others because we all accumulate things for different reasons. Like any behavior that you want to change it requires introspection and patience with oneself. Experts say it takes three (3) weeks to change a behavior (aka break a habit). But what is three weeks when you can look forward to a life time of organization and the positive energy created by open, uncluttered spaces? Try to start by asking yourself, “Do I really need this?” “Does this make me happy?” “Will I use this if I buy it?” Organization experts agree that there are strategies that you can commit yourself to employing that prevent the accumulation of more things. For instance, for every non-perishable item that you bring into your space you agree to sell, donate, or discard an item that you do not need or love. Try it! Let me know how that works for you.
When is the optimal time to organize the kitchen cupboards, the junk drawer, the trunk of your car, or your garage? It’s not as if you have an abundance of spare time with nothing else to do, right? In order to organize your space and the things in it you will find that you want to create the time to do it. Begin by organizing your schedule so that you can plan ahead and block out longer periods of time for the bigger projects. For smaller tasks, you can organize your schedule and commit 10-15 minutes on a specific day to complete a portion of a larger task, or a short term organizing goal. For instance, you might decide that every Saturday after breakfast you are going to sit down and organize your bills, pay those that are due in 7-10 days, and file the statements. Just 10-15 minutes and you are done, feeling a sense of accomplishment, and if you’re like me…relief!
Yikes, is your car a moving storage unit? Cars are intended to transport us comfortably and safely. There are great organizing and storage containers designed specifically for items in your car. First, it’s important to declutter and get rid of the things that don’t need organizing. Start by throwing out the trash and getting the recyclables in the appropriate bins. Then consider which items are need to be accessed on a daily basis. If they need to be within arms reach then put them in a small bin that you can reach easily and safely. For instance, you might want a box of tissues and a small container of an antibacterial hand gel in a soft bin on the floor behind the passenger’s seat. Remember that safety is most important and that any item that is projected forward when you have to stop short can pose a danger. Keep sports equipment, tools, etc. in the trunk. For more tips, call the Outside In Organizer!
Business slow? Take advantage of the time to take a break from your marketing efforts and organize your office space. Pick one task a day. Maybe tomorrow the focus is your desk top. Remember that your desk top is a work space, not a storage container. Too much on top of your desk? Consider limiting the number of personal items, photos, and souveniers. Then my mantra is “file, don’t pile”. If you are worried about forgetting to do something in that pile because it is filed I can help you create a system that will conquer that fear.
Nothing is more important than nurturing what is on the inside. Do you eat well and exercise regularly? Do you make time for yourself and others? There are no trade-offs for vitality, good health, strong muscles, positive relationships, satisfying work, and financial stability. While you are tending to these aspects of your life you can complement these goals by enjoying visible and more immediate successes and making changes to the outside elements! The Outside In approach is based upon the reciprocal benefits that come from creating positive energy by enhancing your space, your appearance, and your lifestyle choices. Imagine feeling a sense of calm and beauty when you enter your home. Visualize the energy that you will enjoy when you are able to quickly access important information and records that you need in your office. Feel a sense of accomplishment as you add to your “things that are done” list. Feel more positive and motivated when someone else notices the changes that you’ve made. Outside In Organizer and Makeovers can help you to re-assess your priorities and to meet them in manageable steps.
When working with a Professional Organizer (PO) you have the right to expect success. That success is more likely if there is a collaborative relationship and good communication between the two of you. Remember, it is your space and your goals. The PO will listen and engage you in the process, make suggestions, try out ideas, and help you learn to maintain your results. Remember to meet and practice the following: • Patience • Confidentiality • Non-judgment • Ask and answer questions such as, what do I use this for? When was the last time that I used it? Does it work (function) properly? Where does it need to be stored to be accessed and used? Is it seasonal? • Identify and then revisit the client’s goals. First Impressions Count… Someone once said, “You only have one chance to make a first impression.” What do you think and feel when you enter a space? How do you think that it makes others feel? Is the space open? Does it feel healthy? Is the atmosphere calming, energizing, functional and attractive? Does living, working or just simply being in the space meet your needs? If you could change just one element, what would that be? In addition to how you want others who live, work and visit your space to feel, ask yourself does your space actually reflect the way that you feel about yourself?