Find your organizing success formula to navigate through your next project.

A few weekends ago, Jay and I decided it was time to declutter and organize the storage room in our basement. This room has served many purposes over the years, and it had been organizationally neglected for many of those years. The time had come to dig in and get ‘er done.

As most of my own organizing projects do, this one caused quite a few aha moments for me. One of them is that organizing projects are much easier to navigate through when you have a success formula that works for you. Here’s mine:

  1. Motivation. You’ve got to be ready and motivated to get it done.
  2. A vision or goal for the area to be organized. This doesn’t have to be crystal clear at the get go. Simply knowing what is working, and what isn’t, gives you enough clarity to move forward.
  3. A simple organizing process to follow. I use the organizing process I developed for classes like The FUNdamentals of Getting Organized and Organize Your Closet. This process takes the guess work out of how to navigate organizing projects—even the big and overwhelming ones.
  4. Storage solutions that fit your space, the items to be organized, and your sense style. (In other words, storage solutions that are attractive to your eye.)
  5. Focus. You’ll be most successful when getting organized if you focus on one project, or one small area of a project during a single organizing session.
  6. Time. Make organizing appointments with yourself, just as you would if a professional organizer were coming to your home to help you. Make sure this time is as interruption free as possible by making childcare arrangements (if necessary) and eliminating distractions from your phone, Facebook, T.V., etc.
  7. Someone to help or bounce ideas around with. If you have trouble letting go of items, or get overwhelmed while organizing, this one is huge! An extra head can help you think things through so you don’t get stuck or overwhelmed by your project.

This formula works great for me, and helped me navigate my way through a successful basement organizing project. (It looks and feels soooo much better!) The key, however, is to figure out what works for you. What needs to be in place for you to make progress? If you aren’t sure, give the ideas above a try and as you do, notice what works and what doesn’t. Keep doing what works, and brainstorm new ways to address those pieces that don’t work for you.

Happy organizing!


P.S. Our basement organizing project inspired us to create a new online event! Join me for simplify 101’s Spring 2015 Organize-athon. The organize-athon will give you the motivation and ideas you need to check some organizing projects off of your to-do list, and I’ll be available online throughout the weekend to help you figure out your organizing success formula! It all starts on April 17th so mark your calendar and sign up today! (We plan to limit the number of participants in this event, so don’t miss out.)

P.P.S. Sign up for the Organize-athon by April 3rd to get a free copy of my Declutter To Make Room for a Better Life mini-guide. Also, if you need a simple-to-follow organizing process, check out the deal we’re offering on The FUNdamentals of Getting Organized.

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Aby Garvey is a creative organizing expert and simplify 101’s founder. She has created 14 online organizing classes, which she has been teaching since 2007, helping thousands of people around the world get organized. Aby loves to help people create positive change in their lives through her online classes and organizing eBooks.

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