Snippets Issue 14 : The Spring Cleaning Issue

Organizing Tips

Top 10 Tips To Get Organized

Organizing Tips

We've all got a little bit of stress in our lives and, for some, much more than others, but either way most people could do with a little help to stay organised and take a slice of the stress cake out of their lives. I can't think of a better way to start off the new year than to re-organize and rejuvenate yourself. To start yourself off on your re-organization ventures I've compiled a little list of the top 10 things you can do get organized in 2009, hopefully each and every one of you can find something useful, unless you were born organized, and in that case, you can make it your goal to help someone else with their organization troubles!

1. Make your bed

One of the simplest things you can do each morning is to make your bed. Not only will it make you feel quite proud of yourself but it may spark you to go off and organize a bit more of your home. If you suffer from messy bedroom syndrome then having a made bed will make you feel like cleaning the rest of your room to match your lovely, comfortable bed.

2, Sort the mail

It's amazing how a small pile of Monday's junk mail and letters can spiral out of control into a mass of papers covering the kitchen table. As soon as you bring in the mail or as soon as possible on the same day, make sure to open, read, sort, keep and/or bin your mail so that the pile of post doesn't keep growing into some ghastly mountain of papers that scares even the bravest of organizers.

3. Start an Action File

To keep on top of all your household papers: letters, notes, bills and such, buy a small desktop file holder and fill it with coloured hanging folders. You may allocate each family member a separate colour or use different colours for each different folder for yourself. Make sure to label each folder with titles such as "To Pay", "To Do", "To File" and any other ones you find useful. The whole idea of an action file is to make neat work of any paperwork in your household, so each day drop any papers into their according folders and empty out your action folder each week or fortnight. You'll find that many of the pieces of the paperwork will just go into the bin and it will help you to be much more particular in what papers you keep in the beginning.

4. Use a diary

Whether it be electronic or paper, weekly or daily, a diary is a must for the organised lifestyle. If not a diary then you must at least use a calendar. Use it to plan all your appointments, social outings, work hours, etc. You'll never miss a meeting and you'll be able to fit much more into your day.

5. Make a daily to-do list

By writing something down you are much more likely to remember it than if you leave it to memory alone. Near the beginning of each day write up your to-do list but don't make it too long otherwise you'll just be overwhelmed with the amount of chores you have to do and you won't feel motivated to do any of them. Try and write each task down in the order you want to tackle them making the most important tasks first. This way you won't leave completing an important assignment or planning for a meeting to the last minute. There's just something about the action of ticking or crossing something off a list that makes a person feel so good and like you've really accomplished something in your day.

6. Manage clutter

To keep control of your clutter, each time you get up to leave a room have a quick scout around to see if there are any items where they don't belong and if there are pick up one or two of them and take them back to their proper locations. If this doesn't suit you, spend at least 10-20 minutes each day just putting away items that have been left out. If there are lots of things out just focus those 10-20 minutes on one room and when you've completed that room move onto the next one. Try to make this a daily ritual and eventually it will become habit.

7. Make use of Flea Markets/Swap Meets

Everybody accumulates "junk" that they do not wish to keep, whether it be unwanted birthday presents, outgrown toys or just something you no longer have a use for, we all get it. So, in order to keep under control of it all, make a space somewhere in your house to put all these unwanted items such as the garage, shed or spare room and when you accumulate enough, fill up your car and take it down to you local flea market or swap meet and sell it all for a small price. Not only are you rid of all your excess "junk" but you can make a bit of cash at the same time. If selling your items at a flea market isn't your thing then you could be super generous and donate your items to a needy charity.

8. Do chores while you chat

Whenever someone calls try to multitask and do a chore while you talk, preferably something you can do with your hands such as making a salad, organising your sock drawer or putting away misplaced items. Make use of small pockets of time whenever you can.

9. Make a weekly meal plan

Planning the week's meals in advance takes the hassle out of making last minute dinners and means less rummaging through the pantry for snacks. It also means only one trip to the supermarket per week leaving more time for you!

10. Make organising fun

Don't make getting organised and doing household chores a bore, being the creative and crafty people you are there are many things you can do. Make yourself a special cleaning apron, buy some patterned kitchen/laundry gloves, get another person to help you with a task so you can chat while you work, decorate your bedroom so that you have a better reason to make it clean, play some music while you cook, dance while you dust, give yourself a reward such a watching your favourite television program after you've done the laundry, the possibilities are endless for all you crafters out there!


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