The 4 Most Vital Elements for Staying Organized

The 4 Most Vital Elements for Staying Organized

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Adrienne Breaux
Jan 28, 2015

Want to seal the deal on organized rooms in your home once and for all? It might sound like hyperbole to say there are only four elements to add to a space to ensure it's organized for good (for of course, there's more than one way to bake a cake). But these four elements are essential to getting a room smart and keeping it organized. Do your rooms have these?

1. A regular schedule for purging

Did you think we were going to say "label maker"? Hey, we're sure those are handy to have around, too. But to really want to end your disorganized ways for good to end up with rooms that stay pretty smart and sleek on the regular, you're going to have to plan out, record and stick to a regular schedule for purging.

So whip out the planner or calendar app, and make dates with yourself and your storage in intervals that work for your needs. Think about the hot spots in your home, and think about how long it took for them to get messy again after an organization session. This will tell you how many purging sessions to schedule and what the intervals need to be. Then of course, don't ignore those reminders when they pop up through out the year!

2. Creative storage that stretches out, gets a little weird but most importantly gets the job done

Unless you were blessed with wall-to-wall built-in cabinets (and actually, even if you're lucky enough to have that!), you're going to want to customize the storage you have, add more to what your home came with, get a little weird if it means making something work for your needs and not be afraid to go vertical, horizontal and every direction in between.

It's about not accepting the extra space in between your stuff and your existing shelves — it's using every square inch with small but easy additions like shelf risers and under shelf hooks. It's about going vertical, stealing storage space from hidden spots like under the bed and above the door. It's not about making more space to fill up; it's about giving your stuff — and yourself — room to breathe.

3. A works-for-you storage hierarchy

Do you always have to move five boxes out of the way to get to the one box full of things you actually use regularly? Well that doesn't sound like your storage is working very well for you. And you know what that might lead to? You not using your storage, your stuff cluttering up and your home not being nearly as functional as it could be.

It's more common than you think — folks tend to stick to the way they set-up their space after move-in — and you can not realize that you're going through pretty ridiculous movements to get to things. So reevaluate your space for how you use it on a regular schedule, and don't be afraid to make storage changes to make it easier to get to things. Fay Wolf explains it well in this one-minute video tip and you should give your home a function makeover:

4. Storage elements that excite

Whoo buddy this can be a tough one to implement if there's absolutely nothing about the act of storage and organizing that revs your engine. But that means you've got to try even harder. Maybe it's a shiny new label-maker you use to pump out helpful but witty labels. Maybe it's splurging on a set of baskets so gorgeous you can't wait to tuck things away in them.

You're looking for that motivation — the sort of thing that's going to keep you coming back to your storage solutions and using them long after the luster as worn away. It could even just be hanging on to the feeling of a refreshing, creativity-inducing space when you organize. You've got to find what it is that excites you about getting and staying organized and invest the time and energy for your rooms, you're worth it!

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