8 ways to get organized in the New Year



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Getting organized is one of the most common New Year’s resolutions. But by June, how many of us who vowed to get organized back in January are likely to have achieved that goal?

One of the best ways to keep up your motivation for a major lifestyle change is to make small changes to your everyday routine. Adopting new habits is easier than you think. Here are some ideas on how to start:


1. Make your bed every morning

Your bed is the dominant feature in your bedroom. Making your bed will make your whole room feel orderly. Bonus: This task takes less than two minutes.


2. Keep a donation bag in each of your clothes closets

You now have a place to keep clothes you no longer like or that no longer fit until you have the time to take them to a resale shop.


3. Create a home for your stuff

One way to organize is to use the concept of “prime real estate”. Most frequently used items go in the most easily accessible places. Least frequently used items get stored in out-of-the-way spaces. Another trick is to put things where you use them, like keeping tape and scissors by the gift wrap.


4. Shop with intention

Before you buy, ask yourself, “Do I really need this?” “Would I still buy this if it wasn't on sale?” and “Do I have a place to store it?” If the answer to any of these questions is “no” it’s best to walk away. The less you own, the less you have to take care of.


5. Keep a trash bin as close to the mailbox as possible

The vast majority of the mail you receive will be junk. Throw it away before it has the opportunity to clutter your main living space.


6. Use more hooks

Hooks involve much less work than hangers. Place them low enough so your children can easily hang up their own coats, backpacks and gear.


7. Plan ahead

At the end of each day, take a few minutes to prepare for the next day’s activities. Mentally run through all of your “to do” items and set out the things (diaper bags, backpacks, snacks, coupons, clothes, reusable grocery bags, returns and receipts) that you will need.


8. Put things back in their homes

This is extremely important for living an organized lifestyle. To maintain organization you must put things back where they belong each and every time. Whether it's done immediately or sometime during the day, the point is that it gets done. Thrive on the joy and satisfaction of walking into a clutter-free room, knowing everything is in its place.


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This article was written by Sarah Giller Nelson of Less is More for Angie’s List.

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