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5 Tips for Organizing Success in 2023

This time of year, New Year’s resolutions become a topic of discussion. Rather than another post on unrealistic dreams you probably will never achieve, I’d like you to think about organizing! What will it take to finally get organized this new year? Hint: It doesn’t start with lots of organizing products.  You have to do a little work in advance.  So here you go, 5 tips for organizing success in 2023. 

Think About Your Routine

We all have routines. They may involve getting dressed, making coffee, or preparing to work from home. In every scenario, organizing success begins with thinking through your routine. I do not drink coffee, but most of my friends do. It makes me crazy watching them go from one end of the kitchen to the other to get their fix. Instead, this caffeine addiction routine should begin with everything you need in one place – or in close proximity. Once you start thinking in terms of routines, you can identify the items that are needed and assign a place for them. This will enable you to efficiently start every routine. 

Create Sorting Signs

Organizing success does not just happen because you watched a Netflix show. You need a process. An organizing process starts with creating sorting signs: Keep, Donate, Trash, Recycle and Gift/Sell. The signs make quick work of any organizing task. Whether you are taking on a garage, closet, or a drawer, using these signs is an essential part of organizing success.  

You may ask where the “Maybe” sign is in this list. I do not do “Maybes” with my clients. “Maybe” piles quickly become mountains. Rather, I will concede to “store” items a client may have a tough time deciding on now. If things in the “store” pile are not accessed in 6 months, then we go back to the original options.  

Designate Spots for Everything 

This tip is organizing 101 but still wildly overlooked. By designating a spot for everything, everyone will know where to return items that are used, or where to place items that come into the space. For example, your kids’ backpacks. They do not go on the entryway floor…they go on a hook in your mudroom or in a closet. In addition, especially in the pantry and bathroom, having a designated space allows you to easily spot when you need to replace something. I can visualize my pantry and know when I need to buy a can of corn or refill the quinoa container (Kidding. Quinoa seems to multiply in my pantry). 

Involve Your Kids 

This is a no-brainer considering kids are typically a prime source of clutter. But beyond corralling the kid clutter, involving your kids in the process teaches them life lessons. Some easy suggestions: put items up before taking something else out; donating toys to others who will benefit from their gifts; and the one in, one out rule (especially when it comes to toys and stuffed animals). Additionally, getting them in the habit of telling you when clothes/shoes no longer fit will ease closet congestion. Regardless, once a quarter you should be evaluating what needs to go to a sibling, friend, consignment or donation site. 

Conquer the Mail 

Honestly, this is the key to your happiness. When you can conquer the mail, you can master any organizing challenge! Here are the steps: 1) DO NOT put the mail down before you sort the junk out. Stand over the recycling bin and discard the junk. 2) OPEN all the other mail and sort it by person responsible. So, if someone handles all the bills, they go into that person’s pile. 3) Put actionable items in their “spot”, which ideally is a file labeled appropriately. 4) Within the hour, file and/or shred all other items. Then repeat this mantra, “I will not have mail accumulate on any surface of my home. NEVER. EVER. “ 

So, there you have it, 5 tips for organizing success in 2023. While there are many other organizing tips to share, these are the simplest and most effective to help you get started. After you have conquered these, your inner organizer may just emerge and then watch out Container Store….it’s on! 

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