Monday, May 20, 2019

Ways to Organize This Month

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Here are some ways to organize this month:

Organize your outdoor areas.  Since it's nice enough weather to be outside, take this time to organize your outdoor area.  Set up the patio furniture, make space for any grilling supplies, hang the hose up (or get a hose storage system if you don't have one), take the cover off the air conditioner.  All the little things that need to be done so you can fully enjoy your space this season.

Learn KonMari folding.  I know I already recommended organizing closets and drawers but if you didn't master Marie Kondo style folding then, take the time to learn.  You become much, much faster at it after a few loads of laundry and it makes a serious difference in the look and feel of your drawers.  You'll find that your clothing stays much more organized, and you'll love being able to see everything at a glance.  You'll also be able to quickly see what you have too much of and never actually wear.

Pack a beach bag.  If you're someone who hits the beach often, or the park for picnics, pack a bag that stays packed so you have all your essentials without re-doing the work every weekend.  Make sure the bag has sunscreen, sunglasses, books, reusable water bottles, frisbees, flip flops - whatever you consider your essentials, so all you have to do each time is add some snacks and drinks.

Get rid of your junk drawer.  The best way to organize your junk drawer is to not have one at all.  The minute you label an area 'junk' or even 'miscellaneous,' you'll find yourself throwing all sorts of things in there, never to be seen again.  There's just no need for a junk drawer when you have spaces in your house to make proper homes for things.  Pens and notepads and stamps can go in the office or on a desk.  Batteries can go in a toolbox or in a storage bin near the TV that houses cords and small electronics.  Decks of cards can go where the rest of the games are.  You can even make a small emergency drawer to house the matches and flashlights.  Make a real plan for anything in your junk drawer that you need to keep and move things to their new homes.  Reclaim the drawer and designated a real, useful purpose for it, like storing kitchen towels and aluminum foil.

Organize your desk.  While you're getting all those lost supplies out of the junk drawer, organize your desk or area you consider an office area.  We don't have an office or a desk because we just don't need to keep much of these items at home.  There's a bookcase in the room with our treadmill that has 8 cubby holes, and we've dedicated one to things like pens and stamps, should ever need them.  Super simple.  If you work in an office, organize that desk too.  Take everything out and keep only what you need and use.  Try to clear everything off your desktop and put it into drawers, that will help keep the space feeling tidy.

Create a master grocery list.  Although our list changes weekly depending on the recipes we decide to make, we have a long list of staples that we regularly purchase, like milk, eggs, black beans, quinoa, pasta, canned tomatoes, etc.  Things that we use over and over again in most of our recipes.  I have a separate list for these items, and I make note when any one of them is running low in our stockpile.  That way I know to pick it up the next time I grocery shop or see it on sale.  Just one small way not to have to re-invent the wheel every single week.

Overestimate how long it takes to do things.  The reason people are always pressed for time is because they never know how long it actually takes them to do something.  So if you really want to organize your day and your time and to stop being late for things, start timing how long something takes, like your shower and your work commute.  Then when you're planning your days, overestimate how long it'll take you based on those numbers.  Factoring in this buffer time will help you when traffic is extra crappy or your kid forgot their lunch and you need to drop it at school on your way to work.  At the very least, you'll stop being late to meet people.  Which you know is one of my biggest pet peeves.

What have you been organizing lately?

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