I love to organize. I really do. Baskets, Rubbermaid bins and label makers make me giddy. And it’s okay, I can feel your eyes rolling already but stay with me. Part of this love of mine comes from my admittedly unflattering need for control, but the other part is that having an organized life for me means having an easier, more enjoyable life. I think that’s something we can all agree that we want, whether we love or loathe the process of getting there.
Now, some popular organizational gurus suggest that the only way to really stay organized and tidy is to do a one-sweep attack of your whole house, not room by room. Well, sister, that isn’t my life. If I tore apart my whole house it would never return to usable space because my 18-month-old tornado-of-a-child would undo all progress and our belongings would be relocated to every nook and cranny of the house. So professional opinion or not, I’m calling bologna because said gurus obviously don’t have kids.
And then on Pinterest we find pin after pin of meal planning, bullet journal tutorials, and 52 ways to use toilet paper tubes to organize your life. Wonderful. However, whether they have merit or not, these are simply bandaids on a bullet wound. I still feel unorganized and the amount of stuff to organize continues to grow. Somebody stop this madness!
The deeper issue in my home is All. This. Freaking. Stuff. It clogs up my drawers, it steals my time, it suffocates my life. But this is something that we can take care of with the 15 minute chunks of time we have during the day.The Purge, as I lovingly call it, can be done in increments. The discarding of the outdated clothes and wedding gifts from 8 years ago that haven’t made it out of the back of our closet. The things we save for “someday”. Well, someday aint comin’. The Purge fits our busy mom lifestyles much better than the trial and error tactics we so often put our hopes in. Purge, and the necessity for the countless organizational apparatuses becomes obsolete. And the bonus is that you get the immediate gratification that pushes you to the next room or space to clean out. Because let’s be honest, a lot of us need as much encouragement and motivation as we can get, lest we give up on being organized altogether.
Organization is found after the purge. I dare say freedom and peace are found after the purge.
If we purge, dealing with what’s left is simple.
Here’s the breakdown:
1. Pick a space- a drawer, a closet, a cabinet.
2. Purge all that you’re not keeping, whether to throw away or give away.
3. Put what’s left back in the appropriate place.
So, step into your closet. Do you need 7 black cardigans? Or that pair of jeans that haven’t fit you in 5 years?
Take a look in your email inbox. Do you need to be subscribed to those 20+ different lists?
Take out your junk drawer. Do you need those outdated coupons (you don’t even coupon!), original iPhone cords or cupcake liners (what are those even doing in there?!)
I promise you’ll be surprised at how much you can get rid of and how positively it will affect your life. Granting you more of that time that all of us moms are so desperate for.
Let me make this even easier for you. We have some great organizations here in Cincinnati that could benefit from all of that (gently used) stuff you’re getting rid of. And a couple of them will even come pick it up right off your porch. Now that sounds manageable, even for the busiest of us. We get to rid ourselves of the weight of excess stuff, while potentially helping other moms in our city at the same time. Now that’s a win-win if I’ve ever heard one.
Vietnam Veterans of America- Accept clothes and household items and will pick up from your porch.
Society of St. Vincent de Paul- Accept clothes and household items and will pick up from your porch.
Dress for Success Cincinnati- Accept new or gently used professional attire for women that you can drop off at one of two locations.
For me, being organized isn’t even about having a clean house, though that’s certainly a bonus. It’s about having a clear mind and being bombarded by less “stuff”, fewer distractions. It provides clarity, vision, and peace in the simplicity that’s found once the organizational dust settles. This leaves me more capacity to focus on the good stuff, the real stuff.
So we want to know, what’s the weirdest thing you’ve gotten rid of in your journey to be more organized?