3 EASY STEPS TO GET YOUR HOUSE IN ORDER AFTER THE HOLIDAYS

We all make resolutions that end up falling between the cracks once the year begins. But one of the most productive ways to kick off the New Year is to organize all the areas of your house that became chaotic during the holiday season. Now is the perfect time to do it – why wait until spring when you’ll want to get outside to enjoy the nicer weather? If you’ve slipped up on one or two of your resolutions, it’s not too late to pick up a new one that you can mark off the list early: get organized.

1.       Take an Inventory

If you’re like me and you start organizing in one room, chances are you find or think of things that distract you – and then you’re running in circles doing a little bit at a time all over the house. More often than not you forget where you put something, and then you just want to give up. Here’s a tip: start by making a list.

Write down what you want to organize in each room, and then compare room lists to see if there are any overlapping categories: Are there magazines or books lying around in multiple rooms that you could put on one shelf (as an example)? Or are the drawers around your house jam-packed and you can’t even remember what’s in them? Now would be a good time to write it all down and consolidate.

Also, make note of any supplies you may need to pick up to help you organize: Would you like extra shelves in a room for added storage? Would hooks be handy to make better use of your walls and ceilings? Or are there small jobs that require a trip to the hardware store – like patching up nail holes, sanding molding or touching up paint?

It may take a while, but when you’re finished you’ll have a convenient master list to go off of.

2.       Cut the Clutter

We all collect a boatload of clutter over the year, especially after the holidays. At the very least, you may have gotten gifts and now don’t have room for some of the older items you have. Or maybe you have things stuffed in closets that you haven’t even looked at for the past year. Here are some words to live by: if you don’t use it, lose it. Depending on where you live, it may be a little chilly to have a garage sale, so consider donating to a group such as Salvation Army, Purple Heart or Goodwill. And if it’s broken, toss it out already (or recycle it).

Streamline your stuff so that you can begin to streamline your life.

3.       Stick to a Deadline

Once your house is better organized, start tackling those maintenance projects mentioned earlier. The best way to make sure you get what you want done when you want it done by is to create a deadline for yourself and stick to it. Pretend you’re going to throw a huge party and you want your place to be perfect for company. Or better yet, plan a real event – invite friends or family over for a dinner to help you find the motivation you need to get your things organized and your projects complete.

As long as these polar vortexes are keeping you indoors, now’s the time to get your housework done so you can enjoy the warmer weather – when it finally comes.

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