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Start SMALL for BIG Organizational Gains

Many of us wish to start the NEW YEAR with more space and less stress.  Reducing the clutter in our lives is a great way to start!  However, sometimes we jump into big projects full of motivation and resolve and realize that we tried to tackle too much at once.  If you are looking at a lot of areas that need organization, consider starting with a SMALL space and build those organizational muscles for BIG gains.  

 Pick a small, defined area that’s really bugging you or causing distress (a desk drawer, medicine cabinet, the shoe shelves in your closet).  

  1. Think about the space — spend 5 minutes thinking of how this space can better serve you and what items actually belong in this space in order for you and the space to function better.
  2. Sort the things in that space into two distinct groups:
    • What belongs in the space – See STEP 1
    • What doesn’t belong in this space – See STEP 1 
  3. Put what belongs back in place. At this point, make a note of the organizational solutions that will serve to keep essential items tidy.
  4. Find a home for the stuff you pulled out.  Remember, the best home for something may not be your HOME.  Donate or toss it!   Also, beware of duplicates of necessary things.  You need a can opener in the kitchen drawer, but you probably don’t need THREE can openers.

Let’s look at an example to see how these steps work in the real world.  Here is a kitchen drawer organization project seen in the Before and After photo at the top of this blog post…

First, we determined the purpose of this drawer. It’s close at hand to the main prep area for the cook, so we decided to only put food prep tools here that are used very frequently.

Review everything currently in the drawer based on the decision we made in Step 1.  Meat thermometer, can opener, vegetable peelers and knives are a YES, and everything else is a NO for this drawer.  Also a NO – the existing organizer that didn’t work well in the space.

Put things back in place and plan to keep things in place with the right organization solutions. The knife block keeps knives accessible and the cook safe.  Grippy drawer liner keeps all other tools easy to see, use, and put away.

Handle the stuff that doesn’t belong.  The rarely used candy thermometer goes to another part of the kitchen to live with the baking things. The never used kitchen tools are ‘rehomed’. 

Once you’ve organized one SMALL thing well, take a minute to savor the results.  The sense of accomplishment we gain from a perfectly organized small space will carry us onto the next space.  And then the next!