The second session I attended at Hearts at Home was titled "The Get Yourself Organized Project". This was a really nice session with basic advice for those of us who are really tired of trying to be Martha. I love how she defined organization: "Organization is getting the things done that are important."
Her ideas are pretty simple. There are two things you need, a system and accountability.
She gives 8 simple rules for getting organized:
- Work Backwards: Break up a task so that you don't have to do everything at the last minute. Give yourself time to complete tasks and do them on days/nights that are less stressful. This is a great concept to teach your children when it comes to school work.
- Apply Pressure Where Needed: What makes you feel the craziest? Which room do you hate to walk into? If you feel better having a clean kitchen focus there, if it's the bathroom then focus on that room instead.
- Wait For a Path to Appear: There is no perfect solution to organize your craziness. Take a look at what your problem is and where the path is. Her example was shoes in the entryway. To solve the problem she bought a shelf and put it out of the way to hide it from visitors. Well that of course didn't work. Her husband suggested a basket by the door where shoes end up. I'm sure you can guess that it was much more successful. There was a path already and the basket was just placed on the path, where the shelf was trying to create a new one.
- Never Organize Alone: It seems like common sense but use your family. This is a great opportunity to teach your kids responsibility and how to be part of the family.
- Treat Your Home Like A Grown Up Kindergarten Room: Have you ever been in a kindergarten classroom before? EVERYTHING is labeled. Why? So the children can do for themselves. I organize and my kids and husband unorganize, why? I know where things go but they don't.
- 3 Boxes 2 Bags: I've heard similar strategies before. Set the timer for 15 minutes and work on one room. Grab your 3 boxes and 2 bags.
- GREEN box: give away
- Purple box: put back
- Orange box: other rooms
- 1 Garbage bag
- 1 Recycle bag
For more ideas check out http://www.kathilipp.com. There is so many great posts on her website and several books available for purchase including The Get Yourself Organized Project.