New Year’s Day tends to bring renewed optimism, as people resolve to make positive changes to their lives. For many, this means a commitment to organization. In the spirit of new beginnings, here are five essential tips to help you live a more organized life.
Start small. If you bite off more than you can chew, you are likely to lose steam before you achieve your objective. Instead of making big unrealistic goals, focus on the little things first. For example: instead of resolving to organize every cluttered closet and drawer, resolve to create a system that will keep you from adding additional clutter to these areas. Then, you can spend a few extra minutes sorting through clutter to determine what you should keep and what you can do without.
Establish rock-solid routines. We’ve all heard that humans are creatures of habit. Fortunately, you can leverage this trait to become more organized in 2019. Commit to doing the same small tasks around the house at the same time every day or every week. According to research, it can take weeks to establish a habit. With this in mind, you will need to use willpower before your brain fully acclimates to your new routine. Make things easier by limiting your new routine to simple five- to 15-minute tasks. This way, you won’t experience dread and feel overwhelmed when it’s time to do your daily organizational duties.
Downsize. The longer you live, the more stuff you collect. But, do you really need it all? It’s quite common for people to resist getting rid of material possessions. Sometimes, they simply feel overwhelmed by the idea. In other instances, they may develop emotional attachments to items that remind them of a person or specific time in their lives. Sometimes, people hold on to things they don’t need because they grew up in families who discouraged waste. Whatever the case, you can experience significant relief by getting rid of items collecting dust in your closets, garage or basement. Have a garage sale, donate items to charity or rent a dumpster. It may be hard at first, but clearing out old junk can make your feel much better about yourself and your home.
Consolidate your reminders. It’s generally best to use the same calendar for everything, including work tasks, vacations, reminders and anything else on your schedule. Whether you use a paper calendar or digital assistance, you should have one source where you can jot down appointments and any other calendar-worthy events to help stay on task every single day.
Don’t let mail pile up. Snail mail can be a huge source of disorganization. Whenever you get mail or bring any other paper items into your home, act on it right away. Create a filing system for bills and other important items. If you get junk mail, recycle it immediately. Even if you aren’t sure whether a piece of mail is important and feel too tired to open it, force yourself to deal with it now. It may sound like a small thing, but this sort of routine can reduce stress and make your home feel like a more organized, inviting space.
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