Just can’t seem to stay organized. Do you work your tail off and then after a short time feel overwhelmed again by the clutter and chaos? You get that nagging feeling your home is too jamp-packed. You look around and aren’t pleased by what you see. If you feel like you just can’t stay organized, it may likely be because of one of the three reasons.
And no, the reasons aren’t because you have kids, don’t have the time, or can’t afford the organizing supplies.
1. YOUR PRIORITIES ARE NOT CLEAR
When your priorities are out of whack, you’ll find yourself focusing on the wrong things or trying to do ALL THE THINGS, all at the same time. Reality is that you can’t do everything, at least not well. You need to be willing to do fewer things better. In our uber-connected, ambition-crazy world, we often mistake hyperactivity for productivity. We subconsciously associate more work with more results. We believe that the more hours we put in, the better our output. This attitude is intrinsically flawed. By trying to do as much as possible, we don’t streamline our efforts. You and only you are going to have to decide which tasks matter most to you, and which ones matter less, then give yourself permission to eliminate the rest.
No one else gets to determine YOUR priorities, as much as they might want to. Only when you give yourself permission to stop trying to do it all, and stop saying yes to anything, can you make your highest contribution towards the things that really matter.
For most people, this is much easier said than done. There’s so much that gets in the way of admitting what really matters most to YOU, whether it is a feeling of obligation to someone else, a feeling of guilt over things you think you should be most important to you (even if they’re not), a tendency to compare ourselves to other people, or an inability to focus on anything except whatever fire feels most urgent right now.
WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT:
Identify your Priorities
It’s important to start the prioritization process by being aware of all these things that can distract you from being honest with yourself. For motivation and inspiration how to focus your energy only on what’s essential, so you can do the right things that truly matter read
From saying “I have to” to “I choose to”.
From saying “it’s so important” to “only a few things really matter.”
And from saying “I can do both” to “I can do anything but not everything.”
Answer the Following Questions:
What do I feel deeply passionate about or what am I inspired by?
If you could do only one thing with your life right now, what would you do?
What is the very most important thing you should be doing with your time and resources right now?
Choose the vital few from the trivial many.
To make the highest contribution towards the things that really matter, you need to stop trying to do everything and saying yes to everyone.
If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.
The more options we have, the more we feel distracted from what could be our highest level of contribution.
Avoid the undisciplined pursuit of more. Master the disciplined pursuit to less, but better.
2. YOU HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF
Having too much stuff does have an impact on your life. Having too many things can cause us to feel distracted, overwhelmed, and frustrated. It can cause anxiety, indecision, and stress.
You have a jillion jeans, tons of t shirts, and batches of bras. You dressers are busting at the seams and everything you try to take one item others come with.
Your kitchen counters are covered with stuff that doesn’t fit in your cabinets because you have surplus of supplies incase you can’t get to the store for the rest of your life.
WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT:
So you are not stuck living a frustration mess, allows yourself to release unnecessary items that are in the way so you can have more time to focus on the people and things that are important to you. It also provides a good example on relationships with materials possessions for your children less is totally more. Subtraction is key. For decluttering motivation and inspiration, listen to / read the book - Declutter Like a Mother: Casazza, Allie
Cease bring stuff in. Just because it is on sale doesn't mean you need it!
If you have a cluttered home stop the stuff from coming in. End your subscription services (yes, I know Grove Collaborative is so great) and use up what you have. Say no to events you don’t want to go to or freebies you don’t need. If you need 1 thing from Target order it online to prevent the impulsive must haves. These steps will help you get ready for Frugal February too!
Everything in your home needs a designed resting place. If you don’t do this, things can get out of control super-fast, and items will wind up all over and duplicated. All items you keep need to have assigned home or they are just clutter. Every item in your home is taking up valuable real estate and if deserving enough to be there needs a home. If you don’t have space for an item you want to keep you need to make space for it (release another item) or let it go.
3. YOU NEED TO HONE YOUR HABITS
According to researchers at Duke University, habits account for about 40 percent of our behaviors on any given day. What is nuts is habits can be activated automatically without conscious thought, which means that habits are often the default response we revert to unless we have a strong desire to act differently. Your life today is the sum of your habits so think about it. For motivation and inspiration about building good habits & breaking bad ones read Atomic Habits, by James Clearly.
WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT:
Make it a Priority!
Take a minute to identify your habits and pay attention to your day and what you actually do.
If you have always get home, pick up the mail, and drop it on the corner with the other piles of mail from previous weeks.
Your bathroom towels are single use before going in the wash. You have piles of towels on the floor constantly. Maybe you could add a hook to the wall and extend the life of use and cut down on washing and the piles.
I don’t know how but a few pieces of clothing laying on your floor (or your Peloton seat) seems to automatically attract more clothing and soon you begin having a contest with yourself how high the pile can go. Again, hooks are heroes. Over-the-door hooks on the bedroom, bathroom, or closet doors can help keep stuff off the floor and mounds from forming. It may be too hard to fold everything back-up all the time, but you may be able to handle hanging your PJ’s on a hook.
Simply just start your day off by making your bed. An unmade bed somehow instantly makes your entire bedroom messy and disorganized.
Clean up after meals. Spending a few minutes putting dishes in the dishwasher, quickly washing any pots and pans, and wiping down the counter can make a huge difference. Your kitchen is clean and ready for your next meal. Who likes cooking in a messy kitchen and small stacks of dirty dishes quickly multiple into a toppling tower.
What it boils down to is that focusing on small, incremental changes is what matters most to achieving big results.
Every item in your home requires maintenance. If you don’t want the maintenance, then release the item. If you decide to keep it, you need to hone your habits to manage.
Make today the day to stop running like a hamster on an endless treadmill, trying desperately to keep yourself from drowning in a sea of endless responsibilities. Remember, you are not powerless, even in the face of what sometimes feels like an overwhelming list of tasks and responsibilities. And once you understand the biggest reasons WHY you can’t stay organized, you can also start developing the right strategies to fix it. I will be cheering you on.
And if you do need support to hesitate to reach out to a professional home organizer near you. Sometimes just getting a little push in the right direction can make you feel a whole lot more in control.
Founder & Chief Organizer @Mindfully Minimized
Mindfully Minimized is a holistic organizational solution company committed to helping people clear the clutter from their lives. Based in Minneapolis, Mindfully Minimized was founded by owner and chief organizer Leah Morris who works alongside her clients to help them with their challenging spaces to create a beautifully organized home focused around their intention. Leah is a professional organizer, decluttering expert, speaker & coach. She is committed to helping people declutter their lives to focus on what they love. With her passion for providing solutions to problems and serving others she is able to transform spaces to be more clam, purposeful, sustainable, and joyously livable. Check out her website or you can also follow her on Instagram or on facebook.