by Amanda LeBlanc
Now’s not the time to get organized. What? Did she really just say that? Yes, I did, and I have a very good reason why. It’s the craziest time of the year. The time when we are overbooked with parties and school events, the time when we are doing tons of last minute shopping and trying to spend time with family. It is not the time for us to make a mess.
You see, that’s the part we don’t always think about when we decide to get organized: It gets worse before it gets better. When I work in a clients’ homes, I always tell them to be patient. So do yourself a favor and don’t decide that December is the time to rip all of your closets apart and start organizing them or that the kitchen needs to be emptied and reorganized. Just wait. Your time is coming, and it will be better done with some planning.
What do we do with the holidays approaching and we want to make the clutter disappear? There are some simple tasks that you can implement that will help make your home look better and get you one step closer to a reorganized home in the new year.
1. Get a notebook. As you are cleaning your home or just working in it, you will notice what’s wrong with the space and what you really want to accomplish. This is the time to write that down, so that after the craziness of the holidays has left us, you can go back to the list and get started on those projects.
2. Keep a trash bag and a donate bag with you as you are getting ready for the holidays. There are several rounds of purging that I do with my clients. The first round is always the easiest. It’s the items that you know you don’t want or don’t need or are broken. If you always have a trash and donate bag, then you can clear some clutter by getting those items out of the room and into a bag. This isn’t all of the purging you will have to do, but it’s a start and a good one! As you accumulate donations, call a donation place and arrange a pickup before your planned party or get together.
3. Create an action area. Other than trash and donate, there is always the pile of “I have no idea what to do with this!” I hate this pile, and I know you do too! What I am about to tell you and give you permission to do will shock you, so you should be sitting down. Are you ready? Find one closet, storage area, or room (worst case), and move all these items to this one space. That’s right, you heard me! I have good reasons for telling you to do this. First, this is the stuff you really need proper time to deal with and during the rush of the holidays, there may not be the time to handle it. Second, this stuff will just hang around and make your holidays less cheery and bright by constantly reminding you of things you need to handle but can’t. Third, it’s a great starting place for your after-the-holiday organizing projects. When those items are tucked away you may go back after the holiday for a second purge and realize you haven’t missed some of those items at all!
The holidays are a time for enjoying family and making memories, not for stress and chaos. It’s OK to say you will wait on some of the larger projects on your plate. You can still make headway by using these three simple steps to put yourself in prime position for success in accomplishing your organizing goals after the holidays have settled down. Until January, Merry Christmas and may God bless you!