Many people make the effort to get organized, but it is staying organized that is the hard part for most. The thing is, it isn’t impossible. It just takes some shifts in your mindset and habits to keep your home organized.
The effort and time on organization is worth the clarity and focus that results. Think about all the time you waste when things aren’t where they should be and you can’t find anything. Think of all the extra time you spend cleaning when there is havoc. Wouldn’t you rather spend that time on something that keeps your mind healthy?
Here are our 10 commandments you should follow if you are committed to staying organized.
1. Honor thy space.
Your space is your space for whatever time you have there. Show respect for what you have, whether it is the apartment with little storage space or the house with the small kitchen. Do not compare yourself or your home to others. Most people have lived in a variety of spaces over their lifetime, and the factors that have brought them to where they are now are different from yours. If you can move past comparison and discontentment, it will help you tackle and work with what you have.
2. You shall not covet bigger homes.
Sure, it's fine to keep dreaming and collect your inspo boards for the home you want someday. But don’t let it distract you from what you have now. Stay focused on what you really need. The reality is that a bigger home just has more room for disorganization. It is not a bigger closet, rather a better closet that will help you get organized. If you can’t keep a small home organized, you won’t be organized in a bigger home. Start small and be realistic.
3. Only keep what you really love.
Make editing your belongings part of a regular routine. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful or that you don’t really love. Keep items that are both functional and beautiful. Useful organizational accessories should add to the esthetic of your home, not take away from it. Especially in a small space , edit down to the minimum.
4. You shall value quality over quantity.
Strive for better not necessarily more. The more things we have the more we have to find places for them, which is especially tricky in smaller places. Most likely, you won’t even remember you have something when the time comes for you to need it. Instead, keep a smaller number of items that are high quality and that you use frequently.
5. What we hold onto says everything about who we are.
Your closet, home and office must express who you are, not who you were nor who you want to be. Be realistic when organizing. Make sure what you set up is something that works for you. If you structure your things for a personality type that isn’t yours, it won’t work and you will just end up in a perpetual state of disorganization.
6. You shall try hard to NOT have off site storage.
Despite our best intentions, when we dump excess into storage, it goes out of sight, out of mind. Storage is not always as functional as it seems to be. There are times when a storage unit can be functional and practical, such as during a move. We talk about that in this recent blog post. However, that is the exception to the rule. Most often, it is best to pare down our stuff until it fits in the space we have.
7. You shall borrow what you need and don’t have.
The tech world facilitates borrowing anything so purchases are kept to a minimum. It makes no sense to buy something that we will only need once. There are so many places that offer rentals or loans for certain items. Many of us have family or friends who have things we can loan out. Borrowing can save time and space.
8. You shall keep your home tidy.
A home does not just become tidy and organized. Keeping it clean is an ongoing habit we must teach ourselves. Work hard to maintain the routine to return stuff to its home. Everything must have a place. The tidier your home, the more naturally organization will come.
9. You shall cherish your home as you cherish your family.
Protect and care for your shrine. When we take pride in our home, we are more likely to take better care of it. The satisfaction you’ll feel when you do will be a tremendous reward.
10. Start each day with a reason why and a reason why not.
As you go about your day, ask yourself why you are keeping certain things. Ask yourself why you are trying to stay organized. Ask yourself why you don’t want to in the status quo. The why behind organization is what will keep you seeking it.
We believe staying organized is possible even for those who are prone to messiness. It does take some practice to change your habits. If you keep these commandments in mind in your daily endeavors, you will be on your way to staying organized.
Need a little help in getting started? Check out our new virtual consultations.