The standard “get organized” advice is pretty simple. Pick up each thing, one at a time, and put it away. And while that does sound simple, it’s missing a critical factor – a lot of peoples’ stuff doesn’t have a “home”, or a place where it goes.
Home-less stuff is a problem for a few reasons.
When you want to “put it away”, there’s no “away” you can put the stuff. If you have a jacket that you know goes in the front closet, “put it away” may be a bit irritating if you’re tired, but the task itself is pretty simple. You carry the jacket to the closet, grab a hanger, and hang the jacket. But if not, you have to put it somewhere – and “somewhere” frequently just winds up being “somewhere it’s not in the way”.
And putting a thing somewhere temporarily likely means it’ll be in the way again in the near future. You move that jacket off the couch onto the dining room table because you want to sit. Then you have to move it off the dining room table to eat dinner. And so on, the jacket keeps moving around your home without ever really coming to rest in a final place.
But coming up with a place where something goes, especially in the moment when you’re frustrated that it’s in the way, isn’t fun. And it’s frequently at least a small project, rather than a split-second decision you can make.
Put that together over just a few months of indecision, and you can have a house where things are jumbled to the point where you can’t find anything. Even if there’s actually room to organize everything, it might not seem like it because things are such a mess. You might even feel tempted to yell, “hey Alexa, find me a local junk removal company.”
So what do you do?
The answer is obvious – you need to find homes for your stuff, so when you think “I need to put it away”, there’s a valid place called “away”.
If you’re like many people, you might be wondering where to start. In a home full of clutter and junk, it’s hard to tell. Living room? Dining room? Bedroom?
And the best advice we’ve seen is probably not to start by location, but to start by frequency and function. The side effect of stuff not having a home is that you’ll probably be digging around looking for it every time you need it. This means that the place to start is (and has been) right at the top of your mind:
Find homes for the things you’re always losing, and focus on putting them there.
Here’s how to do it.
Think of an item that you can never find, like maybe your car keys.
Ask yourself, “where do I look for these when I’m trying to find them?” Maybe the answer is “the table by the front door”.
Now ask yourself, “why don’t I put them there?”
If the answer is “no reason”, then you just need to practice putting them there. Write yourself a sticky note on the wall where you hang your jacket, reminding you to put your keys on the table.
If the answer is “because the table by the front door is covered in mail, so there’s no room”, maybe you need to do a purge of accumulated mail. Or maybe you need something like a desktop magazine rack – available at Amazon or any office store – to corral the mail and create room for the keys. Or maybe you just want to get a heavy-duty 3M Command hook and put it on the wall, so you can hang the keys instead of putting them on the table.
Then, as the shampoo bottle says, “wash, rinse, repeat”. If you do one or two items per week, you’ll be making massive progress in no time.
As you work through this process, something almost magical will happen – it’ll cause you to confront the other, less-important stuff that’s always in the way. Sometimes it’s this process that leads people to realize they just need a few extra shelves, and their whole home will finally come together.
But sometimes you’ll realize that you have a ton of junk that just needs to go. This is why we’re in business. And since you’re already here, instead of asking Siri or Alexa for a number, let us save you the trouble – (715) 598-3677. One call will put our junk removal pros on the job, and make even your biggest piles of unwanted junk disappear….almost like magic!
If you’re chronically disorganized, we encourage you to spend the next month or so coming up with homes for your most important stuff, and see if that helps. And if you need less “organized” and more “a team of people with strong backs”, you have our number. We’re always just a phone call away!