I usually stick to a pretty simple New Year’s resolution in regards to organizing. Rather than make it complicated or difficult for myself, I follow four simple resolutions; Clear, Sort, Store, Get rid of. And, I make a list of what task I am going to do first, and when to do the task. (Because my housemate and I have an annual New Year’s Eve party, I tackle some of these tasks the week leading up to the party.)
Below, I’ve listed some possible organizing tasks for you to do during January, 2017:
- Home office: Clear off your desk, floor, book shelves, etc. Test all your pens to see if they still have ink. If not, throw them out. Recycle and re-organize the papers on your desk (including those little scraps of paper you’ve written notes on) and in your files. Delete all of those hundreds of emails and attachments that are taking up too much space.
- Bedroom: Clear clothing and accessories off of chairs, floor, bed, and dresser. Sort through these items, keep only what you love, and give away what you don’t love or need. Pack away any summer clothes and accessories still in the closet and drawers. Donate, or give away clothing you haven’t worn in the past year.
- Back and front hallway entrances: De-clutter the vestibules that lead from the house to the exit doors. And, de-clutter landings that lead to the basement or other areas. For good Feng Shui energy and safety reasons, be sure to keep the area in front of and behind the doors clear of all things.
- Kitchen Pantry: Go through the shelves and drawers and throw out any food items with an old expiration date. Re-organize those shelves/drawers as they most likely are out of order.
- Living room, Study or TV room: Recycle magazines, newspapers and junk mail that is cluttering these rooms. Magazines can be donated to dentist, physician and therapist offices. Take mugs, glasses & plates lying around into the kitchen to be cleaned and put away.
- Address book: Update the addresses in hard cover or virtual address books. (I recommend you don’t use both kinds, just one.)
- Holiday Gifts: If you don’t like, or won’t use some of the presents you received, either exchange them for something you’d prefer or give them away instead of having them take up space. If you are worried that the gift giver will be insulted if you get rid of it, store it for a few months, and then either re-gift it to someone who doesn’t know the original giver, or bring to a charity of your choice.
- Holiday Decorations: Don’t let holiday decorations, gift wrappings, or cards sit around for too long after New Year’s Day. Avoid clutter by packing them up and putting them back into storage. If some of the wrap paper is torn or too small to use again, recycle it. (I take care of the four simple resolutions for my gifts and decorations sometime in early January.)
- And finally, get rid of one item you used in 2016 that you feel negative about! It could be a piece of jewelry an ex-partner gave you, a Teflon frying pan that is scratched and not safe to use, or anything else that doesn’t evoke good feelings for you.
Take care of these tasks and you’ll feel lighter, have peace of mind, and freedom from clutter!
Let me know what you will take care of in the New Year. I look forward to learning your accomplishments!
If you live in the Boston area, and would like a FREE 1/2 hour telephone consultation to discuss your clutter issues, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org