Is it your goal to be more organized this year?

No matter the timing, your home will always benefit from putting some thought into how to get organized to create a more peaceful and welcoming environment for your entire family.

Here are some useful tips that might help you get organized this year:

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  1. Know your strengths and weaknesses

Organization doesn’t always come easily for me, but since I function much better when I am structured, I work hard to be so. When my time and space are ordered, my mind is clearer and my disposition is more pleasant.

Maybe it has more to do with my laziness than organization because I have a tendency to throw things close to where they should be, instead of putting them back where they belong.  So I know it’s reasonable for me to have to reorganize regularly, but knowing this allows me to be more gracious towards myself as I endeavor to be more disciplined.

Awareness of my strengths and weaknesses also helps me plan my days. I tend to have more energy and be more productive in the morning, so that’s typically when I try to clean the house or get a work-out in.

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Additionally, it’s nice to have someone who can assist with my weaknesses. My husband is quite organized and he has helped me tremendously. You should see his side of the closet!

Do you have a friend whose well-ordered pantries and closets are enviable? Don’t be afraid to ask her to come over for coffee, treats and an organizing party!

  1. Prioritize your time

Knowing my strengths and weaknesses also helps me to clarify my priorities.

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I prefer a fairly simple life. There are a variety of social activities throughout the week, but I don’t like to be on the run all the time. The activities my family participates in are life-giving and aren’t things we do because we feel obligated (except maybe for grocery shopping—we have to eat).  I’ve discovered sometimes it’s best to say NO to some activities. 

Knowing the personality of my family also help us prioritize our time.

My daughter needs some quality mommy time before she has her quiet time each day. My husband likes to have his space ordered and is an introvert who needs to be alone to recharge, but one of his love languages is also quality time. I’m an extrovert who is energized by friends, but I too need time to myself after a particularly demanding day with a 3 year-old. Attending to all of our needs requires creativity but fosters harmony in our home. 

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  1. Minimize and simplify your space

We have a comfortably small house, but when a few things are out of place, it starts to feel claustrophobic. I try to go through my daughter’s clothes and toys about once a season to clear out items she doesn’t need. Often I simply put toys in the basement to be cycled through again later, making them like new.

I try to consistently make the bed, immediately put dishes into the dishwasher after meals, and clean up toys before we go somewhere or before bed each day. I involve my daughter as much as possible to teach her responsibility and encourage her to be a helper.

Once a week I do bigger things, such as laundry, cleaning the bathrooms, floors, and windows. Here’s a great article with a manageable cleaning schedule.

 

When I try to fit in too many things and have too much stuff around the house, I find it harder to be organized and enjoy life. For me, the keys to staying organized are discipline, priorities, and simplicity.

How do you stay organized?



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Annie Wiesman

Annie Wiesman is the co-author of “Education Begins at Birth: A Parent’s Guide to Preparing Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers for Kindergarten.” She is a former kindergarten teacher turned stay-at-home mom who enjoys traveling, hiking in the mountains, and creating memories together with her husband and little girl.



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