Getting Organized, Sometimes Getting Started is the Hardest Part!

I’ve heard from a number of you over the last couple of days struggling with wanting to get organized and just overwhelmed with where to start.  Today’s guest post comes at just the right time to help us with this question.  Amanda is a Professional Organizer and offers some terrific pointers in her post below.  Welcome Amanda!

Hi There, I’m Amanda from Kuzak’s Closet. I am a Professional Organizer from the San Francisco Bay Area and I am so excited to guest post today!

The beginning of each New Year is the time of year most of us focus on starting over and establishing new habits. We often tell ourselves, “This year I’m going to get organized,” or “I’m going to stay on top of everything this year.” The problem is most of these resolutions are too broad and don’t provide guidelines for how to achieve these goals. Fortunately, there are ways to become and stay organized this year and today I want to share a few of my favorite tips and tricks with you.

The hardest part about getting organized for most of my clients at Kuzak’s Closet is deciding where to start. My recommendation: Start in the room that needs the least amount of work. This will allow you to use this room as a staging area for your donation pile, your trash pile and the “things to keep” pile. From there, move clockwise throughout your house to keep everything simple, and to keep you from bouncing from room to room.

Once you decide where to start, here are some of my favorite tips and tricks for getting organized in 2011 and staying organized for years to come!

  • Set an appointment on your calendar to devote to organizing specific areas in your home and stick to it. Whether it is once or three times per week this will help get you into a routine.
  • Don’t skip areas in a room, empty out every drawer and cabinet so you can feel thoroughly organized when you are finished.
  • After you complete a room or closet reward yourself with something you enjoy like a pedicure, a glass of wine, or a new sweater. This will motivate you to keep going.
  • If paperwork is your problem change your settings for your bills and financial documents to be delivered to you electronically, this will help cut down on the amount of mail that you receive and need to file each week.
  • Chances are you don’t miss any of the items you have in your storage spaces, “out of sight out of mind.” Purge the items that are in storage that you no longer want or need and either bring what you want home or downsize your storage unit to save money.
  • Don’t panic, if you are feeling overwhelmed don’t start shoving items in drawers and closets. Maybe you need to take a break or a day off so you can refocus.
  • Once you are happy with your accomplishments and feel organized set a schedule to keep it up.

Here are some suggestions:

Monthly: Refrigerator, Paper Files, Pantry, Vehicle

Quarterly: Linen Closets, Clothing Closets, Bedrooms, Kitchens, Makeup, Cleaning Supplies

Bi-Annually: Garages, Basements, and Storage Spaces

  • If there is a specific area you struggle with, try to devote 15-20 minutes weekly to avoid having it become unorganized.

I wanted to share before and after photos with you to help illustrate that using getting organized is a reachable goal for everyone this new year. A client of mine contacted me in a slight panic after she got a call from a friend who was coming into town for a visit. Her living room had become a dumping ground for everything in the house, it wasn’t a relaxing place to hang out and not ready for entertaining.

We started on the left side of the room and moved clockwise moving unwanted furniture out to the garage so it could be sold online, junk to the garbage, and finding a home for everything else. If you would like to read about this project click here. For more before and afters and organizing tips please visit my blog.

Filed under: Guest Bloggers, Organizing


8 Responses to Getting Organized, Sometimes Getting Started is the Hardest Part!

  1. 1
    Amanda says

    Thank you for having me guest post, have a wonderful New Year!

  2. 2
    Pamela says

    Thank you for the tips! Organization is a huge goal for me in 2011. I am one of those people who feel overwhelmed-especially having three daughters ages 4,6,8. We seem to aquire more stuff all the time. Hopefully I can stick w
    ith a plan this up coming year.

    • 4.1
      Amanda says

      Thanks Tara!

  3. 6
    Elizabeth says

    Thank you. You hit the nail on the head for me…where to begin. Now, I have an action plan on how to tackle my difficult areas.

    Have a wonderful day!

  4. 7
    Jennifer says

    I am at the beginning…. This is my first week of implementing one organizational item each week – my hope is by the end of 2011 I will be completely organized! I like the idea of starting in the easier room, won’t feel as overwhelming I think. So far… my coat closet is the first organized place. I have to say it feels incredibly good to open my closet and be able to get my shoes without rummaging through what feels like 50,000 pairs of shoes!

    Thanks for the tips!!! I am posting a weekly linky on Thursdays asking for organizational tips – if you have any awesome tips for the newbie’s I would love to have you share it!

    Thanks for the tips!!! I am posting a weekly linky on Thursdays asking for organizational tips – if you have any awesome tips for the newbies I would love to have you share it!


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