Have you ever looked around your home and felt overwhelmed by the clutter invading your space? Toys, games and puzzles are all over the floor. Mail is piling up on the table. Pencils, crayons, and coloring books are messily shoved into the drawer just to get them out of the way. If that describes your home, here are several tips on how to organize your home.
First recognize that everything in your home should have its own place. If you don’t believe that, you will never get organized. Second, understand that every home, no matter how big or small, can be organized. Third, take action. Thinking about organizing your home won’t actually get rid of the clutter. So, without any further ado, here are tips on how to organize your home.
Home sweet decluttered home. Does your home often look like one huge playroom filled with coloring books, toys, stuffed animals, sippy-cups, building blocks, school supplies and dirty clothes? If you’re tired of having to tip-toe through the maze of mess, the first thing to do is to buy a few storage bins. Some families like colorful plastic bins, others prefer wicker or wood. Choose a kind that fits the décor of your home. Then find a place for the bins that make it easy to take items out and put them away. If your child is frequently playing on the living room floor, it may make sense to put a bin by the side of the couch or if you’re constantly cleaning up DVDs, place a bin near the TV.
Since clutter doesn’t magically find its way to the bins, involve your kids in decluttering your home. One way is to play “Let’s Go to the Toy Store.” In this game, you are the cashier and your kids are the shoppers. The merchandise is the toys on the floor. Put a bin on the floor near you and tell your child to go shopping. As they bring you the toys, tell them how much each costs, take their play money, and then have them place the toys in the bin. The floor will be clean of toys in no time. Another way is to play “I Spy.” Describe a certain toy on the floor – “I spy something brown and fluffy”—and then have your child put it into the bin when found.
Mail time! Sometimes mail isn’t always opened on the day it arrives and it just keeps piling up. One way to help keep the mail pile from getting out of control is to place two baskets or decorative containers near the front door. One container should be for important mail such as bills and statements; the other would hold mail that can be read at a later date. Recycle what you can and throw out what you don’t need.
Organize your mornings … at night. Do you ever feel rushed in the morning? Then don’t wait until morning to get your “morning” chores done. Make lunch the night before school. Get your clothes and your family’s clothes ready before you go to bed. Make sure your kids put their shoes, sneakers, and backpacks in the same place every time. Then, when you say “It’s time to go,” you aren’t searching the house trying to find these important items.
Organize your car. Technically, your car isn’t part of your home, but it is a huge part of your life … and having an organized vehicle can be just as satisfying and beneficial as an organized home. And keeping your car organized is all about having a place for your things. An inexpensive container is usually sufficient to hold a first-aid kit, hand sanitizer, tissues, activity books, and anything else you may need in a pinch. It’s also helpful to keep a small plastic bag for garbage. Think about how much cleaner your car would be without all the candy wrappers, coffee cups, and runaway Cheerios.
As you think about how to organize your home (and your life), don’t hesitate to re-purpose items you already own. Mason jars and mugs can hold pens and pencils, and a fruit basket can easily become a magazine holder. And, of course, it never hurts to give away (or throw out) items you no longer use.