Tuesday, August 13, 2013

How to De-Clutter in 15 Minutes

As you know, I recommend that you spend at least 15 minutes every day on your organizing.  But... if you have a lot to do, will 15 minutes even make a difference?

The answer is a resounding YES!  You CAN make a difference in your home in only 15 minutes.

I found a great blog post from Better Homes & Gardens entitled "How to De-Clutter in 15 Minutes" which tells you what to do with that time.

So... the big question is... where to start?

Here are the questions to ask yourself.
1. What bothers me the most?
2. What would make me feel the best if it were done.
3. Which area has the most visibility?

Armed with the answers to those three questions, I have included excerpts from the BH&G article that tell you how to de-clutter the most prominent areas.

The next blog will tell you how to de-clutter the more hidden areas, and after that I will give you some ideas of things you can do when you only have 5 minutes to work on your clutter.

Happy Organizing!

Marsha Sims

Declutter Your Kitchen Cabinets
If you have 5 minutes: Simply straighten the insides of your most disorganized or most frequently accessed cabinets and drawers. Bringing order to the things you use most often will make daily routines easier.
If you have 10 minutes: Spend a little time doing the organizational tasks you always think about when you?re cooking but don?t have time to do in the moment, such as relocating your cooking utensils to a drawer closer to your range.
If you have 15 minutes: Do a quick sort-and-toss. Put items you never use into a donation box, and toss gadgets that no longer work or are past their prime.

Declutter Your Clothing Closet
If you have 5 minutes: Hang up clothes that are draped over your designated drop spot, such as on a chair.
If you have 10 minutes: Reorganize the hanging bar in your closet by item type, placing all of your shirts in one section, pants in another, etc.
If you have 15 minutes: After you organize the hanging bar, target one other area, such as the top shelf or the floor of your closet. Come back as you have time, such as five minutes before hitting the hay, to organize the next section until you've worked through the whole closet.

Declutter the Bathroom
If you have 5 minutes: Put away anything on the countertops, and pull the shower curtainclosed to conceal any bathtub clutter.
If you have 10 minutes: Straighten any open displays, and relocate items that don?t belong in the bathroom.
If you have 15 minutes: Dive into the vanity cabinet and any other storage space. Toss items that are outdated or unused. Corral items by type into baskets or bins.

Declutter Your Entryway
If you have 5 minutes: Straighten up the shoes and coats.
If you have 10 minutes: Entryways, as coming-and-going spots, tend to collect more than their fair share of clutter. Do a quick cleanup, and return items to their rightful places.
If you have 15 minutes: Hang hooks or pegs to give coats and bags a home instead of the floor.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Organizing is not fun!

Organizing is boring... drudgery... hateful... miserable...  And we don't do it because it's not fun!

So, let's turn that around!

What can we do to make the unbearable, bearable?

Depending on what you like, you can find what Mary Poppins said... "In every job that must be done there is an element of fun."

How do we do that?  How do we find the fun in something we clearly don't want to do?

Here are 10 ideas to make organizing a little more, well.... bearable.

  • Listen to music or a book on tape
  • Sing songs (even songs you make up) while you are organizing
  • Talk on  the phone while you are organizing
  • Keep your favorite television show on while you are organizing
  • Invite a friend over to help, then you help her
  • Make a checklist to keep yourself motivated
  • Take before and after pictures
  • Commit to taking an action; report when you have completed it
  • Hire a young person to work with you and work alongside them
  • Help someone else with their organizing.  It's surprisingly motivational for you

What do you do to keep yourself motivated?  I'd love to hear your response!

Happy Organizing!

Marsha Sims

Thursday, August 1, 2013

I found this article... and thought you might enjoy it as much as I did!
It is from Prevention Magazine.


4 moves to feel happier



Just as you strengthen muscles by using them, you can tone your positive personality traits, such as optimism. Adults who spent time exercising character strengths improved them — and their overall sense of well-being — better than a control group, according to a new study from the University of Zurich.
Try these moves, based on the activities study participants completed. No sneakers required:
The Reach-Out (improves gratitude): Write a letter or an email to someone who has supported you or gone out of her way for you recently, and let her know that it mattered. Expressing gratitude can elicit positive emotions, which play a key role in boosting your mood, researchers say.
The Joint Effort (improves enthusiasm): Lacking motivation to do the things you really want to do? Surround yourself with an energetic crowd — at a sporting event, an uplifting seminar, or even an aerobics class. Enthusiasm can be contagious and habit forming.
The Door Opener (improves optimism): Think about a situation in which you lost out on something, whether the cause was bad luck or bad timing. Write it down, then identify a door that opened because of that closed one. This move helps you look on the bright side.
The Deeper Dig (improves curiosity): Rather than simply wondering about a topic of interest, probe further. Read an article or go to an exhibit. Journal about your experience or recap it on Facebook. Learning — and sharing — knowledge fosters curiosity.
How to use these exercises to improve your organizing:
The Reach-Out  -  Positive emotions are contagious.  if you feel positive in one area, that can spill out to another area... and another.  Use this "exercise" when you can't make decisions, or when you feel sad about the state of your organizing.
The Joint Effort  -  Use this exercise when you can't make yourself get started.  Get someone around you who can help you organize, or at least help to lift your mood.  Go help someone else organize, and use the joint effort to bring more enthusiasm into your life.  Caution.  Keep away from negative people!  This only works with the joint effort brings you up... not down!
The Door Opener  -  Remember to always get the most "visual bang" in your organizing.  Okay, you tried something that didn't work.  Look at the bright side.  So, you gave something away that you wish you still had.  Look at the bright side.  Now identify a positive thing that occurred because of a a mistake you may have made.
The Deeper Dig  -  Help someone else get organized, and you will be strengthening organizing muscles that you can use to help yourself get organized.  Learn organizing techniques.  Go to youtube and search for "how to organize a ________."  The more you know, the more you can use to help others as well as yourself.
Happy Organizing!
Marsha Sims

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/10/20/3057422_4-moves-to-feel-happier.html#storylink=cpy