By: Amy Hannold, SavingCentsEveryday.blogspot.com
Getting organized may seem to some, a “To-Do” task, or a dream that everyday life puts constantly out of reach. As with any other life change or new task, gathering the tools and implementing them into your daily life takes time. Long term changes often start with small, short term steps.
Determine what area of your life demands the most urgent improvement. List the parts of your day which cause you the most sweat and stress. Decide on one change that will bring you the greatest sense of satisfaction. Again, think small, so that you are neither disappointed nor overwhelmed.
Families can find a sense of both peace and accomplishment when they begin their organizing improvements with de-cluttering. Look around your home, room by room. Realize that many of the things that clutter your life and remain unused could be items someone else needs. Freecycle.org and Craigslist.org are great places to list items you could gift to someone else. Freecycle allows you to help another family, giving them items they can use. Craigslist offers you the opportunity to give away items, or to sell them at an affordable price to a neighbor. Books can be listed and traded at Bookmooch.com or Paperbackswap.com. Freepeats.org is the place to list and give maternity, kids items and equipment.
Once you’ve cleared a path to the corners of your home, there are affordable tools which help the daily search and store process. Recycling comes into play here as well, when you find ways to organize your belongings with items you may already own. Baskets, trays, drawer organizers, boxes of all sizes, shoe boxes and over the door racks may sit unused, but hold great potential for making life easier. These items are also found from neighbors, Freecycle, or second hand stores. Getting organized does not have to break your budget. Cereal boxes, for example, when sliced diagonally in half and covered with contact paper become great magazine (or paper) holders. Shoeboxes, reinforced with contact paper, beat the cost of more expensive store-bought storage boxes.
Search your local thrift store or yard sales Think “outside the box” for how items you see could be used to organize. Lazy Susans (those round rotating trays), vertical file shelves, baskets and tin cans can be your chaos solutions. Utilize Google for organizing solutions and ideas from others. Think homemade, affordable and creative.
When you’ve completed the de-cluttering process and found new ways to store your things, reconsider how you get things done during the day. Flylady.net is an inspiring resource for streamlining household tasks. Many of her tools and daily emails of knowledge are free of charge.
Free, printable tools for menu planning, “To-Do” reminder lists and other life-organizing forms are available online. File and store these forms in a place that makes sense to find them when needed. Some of the best websites are:
Talk with your friends and encourage one another. Swap organizing ideas and resources. Encourage one another and hold each other accountable; it may go a long way towards serenity in your world.
Great post. Craigslist is very popular here in SoCal and a great way to reduce the clutter, make a few $$ and give someone else the chance to enjoy your things that you're no longer using!