People are weighed down by their things. The more we have, the more we have to manage. Being overwhelmed with too many belongings in a disorganized space can disrupt our life, impede productivity, and keep us from achieving our goals. The psychological costs of clutter are real!
Getting organized can seem daunting, even if you know how beneficial it could be. The good news is you don’t have to do it alone. Professional organizers have tried-and-true methods for bringing order to chaotic spaces. Here’s a little insight into the process of working with a professional organizer.
Determine Your Goals
As professional organizers, we help you by guiding you toward your goals. To do this, we start by discussing what those goals are. Do you need to downsize your belongings after downsizing your home? Do you need to clear out a room for a relative to come live with you? Or do you simply want to overhaul your closet? Our approach for each situation will be unique and catered to what you aim to accomplish.
Next, we begin looking at the contents of the room. To help determine what to get rid of, we use a series of questions:
- Does the item belong in this room, or can it go elsewhere?
- Is there a specific use for this item?
- Is it difficult to obtain again?
- Is it recent enough to be useful?
- What’s the worst thing that can happen without it?
If you can live with the answer to the last question, you can likely let the object go. We don’t do this with every object, but when you are stuck on a category or specific item, we take you through this process.
Decluttering: Keep, Toss, or Donate
We call the initial decluttering process the “keep, toss, or donate” stage as we help you sort your belongings into these three categories. Our method is to gather like with like within a space. Once you see everything altogether out of the drawers, cabinets, and closets, it’s easier to understand how much you have and let go of some things.
We try to focus on deciding what you want to keep, because keeping is easier than letting go—it’s like shopping in your own space. If you’re tempted to keep too much, we remind you of the original goal motivating you to get organized.
Giving Everything a Home
Once we have gone through all your belongings, the next step is deciding where to put what you are keeping. Being organized is about having a “home” for each category of items. That way everyone knows how to find what they need and where to put it back. When you create a home for every item, everyone in the family can help pick up so it doesn’t all fall on one person.
Acquiring Organizing Supplies
After determining the best homes for your items, we consider what supplies you might need to help keep things organized: bins, baskets, containers, drawer dividers, file folders, etc. This is where the design and systems aspect of professional organizing comes in. Organized spaces should not only look good but also function well. Our motto is that organization must be functional and easy to use, because if it’s not easy, no one is going to use it.
Establish New Routines
The last step of working with a professional organizer is establishing new organizational routines. We create systems that are simple to follow and designed for function. Here’s an example of a “mud room” system: When kids come home, they put their backpacks on the mud room hook, hats and gloves in a basket underneath the bench, school folders with anything for parents to sign on the kitchen counter, and lunch bags in the sink to clean. Mom or dad returns the reviewed folder to the backpack and the clean lunch bags to the cabinet.
Systems like this help our clients get and stay organized. Together, we create new routines, equip you with needed tools, and teach you how to develop the habits necessary to run your home well.
Working with a Professional Organizer
Ready to work with professional organizers? The dedicated, experienced team at Totally Organized is here to help. We’ll start with a phone assessment to discuss your goals, timeframe, and preferences, then meet with you in your home to evaluate the scope of the project and next steps—all for free. This consultation gives you an opportunity to ask any remaining questions you may have about working with a professional organizer. Give us a call to learn more about how our team of professional organizers can transform your space and lifestyle for the better.