Many people put down “get organized” on their list of New Year’s Resolutions, and there’s a good reason for that – life goes by much smoother when you are organized.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed – try not to. You don’t have to organize everything in your life at once. Becoming a more organized person is something that takes years and years of practice. It’s worth it though, I promise.
Here are a few things you may want to consider getting organized in the new year.
If you haven’t yet created a budget, the new year is a great time to do so. Having a budget in place for your family is crucial if you want to live within your means, pay off debt and save for the future.
This is an item that tends to get cluttered rather quickly, especially if you have children and need to cram diapers, wipes, toys and a change of clothes in there. Make your daily outings go by smoothly with an organized purse or diaper bag.
There are many great purse organizers on the market that can help you keep everything neat and organized, but the most important thing to remember is to keep like items together. For example, gift cards in one spot, cell phone in another, snacks in another, small toiletries (hand lotion, lip balm, etc.) in another, etc.
It’s easy to end up with a messy and unorganized inbox if you ignore your emails for as little as one day – and it can seem overwhelming to dig yourself out of that giant heap of messages.
Make it a goal to have a completely empty inbox every evening. When you decide to de-clutter your inbox, stick to the “read and react” system. Once you open an email, you have to read it and then decide what to do with it (delete, reply, or move to another folder to respond to later).
Make your home feel welcoming when you first walk in the door by removing all unnecessary items. A mirror on the wall, a small-medium table, a shoe rack, floor mat and small-medium bench are really all you need. If you don’t have a hall closet, some simple hooks on the wall are a great way to organize jackets, bags and umbrellas.
If you have quite a few items to corral by the front door, it may be a good idea to place a small dresser in your entryway. Fill the drawers with smaller items, hiding as much as possible to keep your entryway feeling clean and clutter free.
If you use coupons and have built a stockpile in your home, keep it under control by making sure that everything is organized. If you add items to your stockpile every week like I do, it doesn’t take long for things to get out of hand if you don’t have a strict stockpile organization system in place.
Keep like items together, put new items at the back and keep an inventory of what you have on hand , so you don’t end up purchasing more than you need.
I suggest going through your stockpile at least once per month – checking for items that may be close to expiration, and making sure to use them up or donate them to a local charity.
Start the year off right with an organized vehicle to take you from place to place.
Nothing stresses me out more than getting into a vehicle and seeing a bunch of takeout containers, receipts and papers, stray toys, and a big mess of reusable bags taking up residence all over the floor.
Have a bag handy for trash and empty it whenever you leave the vehicle. Keep an air freshener in your glove compartment and give a light spray every once in awhile to freshen things up (or hang an automobile freshener over your rear-view mirror).
My friend Laura has some great tips for organizing your vehicle.
I encourage you to choose at least one thing from this list to organize in the new year. I promise that if you do, your life will be much less stressful. It’s amazing just how much an organized space can change the way you feel every time you see it (in a good way!).
A word of advice: If you do plan to tackle everything on this list, only attempt to do one thing at a time. Trying to do too much at one time is a surefire way to become overwhelmed and give up completely. Once you have completed one thing, move on to the next, and so on and so forth.
What do you plan on organizing this year? Please share in the comments!