Don’t wait until the end of the year to get rid of all the unnecessary items you’ve accumulated so far.
If you do it now—halfway into the year—it’s going to be less of a challenge to rummage through piles of paper, racks of unworn clothes and stacks of books and old magazines.
Remember that eliminating clutter can transform your space dramatically and leave you feeling lighter.
But, before you start dumping everything into garbage bags, keep these organizing tips in mind.
1. Clear out stuff over a period of 2 to 3 weekends.
Don’t underestimate how much time they need to clear things out. You may just be working with a 25 sq. m. studio or even just one closet, but many people underestimate how much time they need to clear things out. Organizing is a physical task and can be time-consuming so plan accordingly.
2. Categorize and label.
Categorize the stuff you sort through. Keep one pile for electronics, another for work materials, another for entertainment, and so forth.
Put small objects of the same category in bins or boxes and label them. All you need is a roll of masking tape and a felt-tip pen!
Staying organized even while sorting will help keep your head above water throughout the process.
3. Keep in mind that people use only 20% of the things they own.
Professional organizers go by the adage that people can do without 80% of what they own. So, when sorting through your stuff, don’t let sentimentality get the better of you. Make practical decisions.
KEEP: Old books from childhood.
THROW: Math notebooks from grade school.
KEEP: Pretty paper bags you can reuse in the future.
THROW: Dried-up mascara in pretty packaging.
TIP: Before throwing something away, ask yourself how essential it is to you. What’s the worst that can happen if you decide to throw it away?
4. Buy a box of Ziploc bags.
Use the bags to store knickknacks and keep them dust-free.
Label your bags and store them in a catchall box.
Resist the urge to just dump all your random items without sorting through them—even storage boxes will benefit from labeling.
5. Get a uniform set of hangers.
Sometimes, all a messy space needs is some streamlining.
A messy walk-in closet will get an instant sprucing up with a uniform set of hangers.
Group clothes according to category (short sleeved tops, long sleeved tops, pants, shorts, long dresses, short dresses, evening dresses, etc.).
Your closet will be more functional and cleaner to look at.
Have any home and organizing questions for the author? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Chinggay Labrador is a freelance writer and stylist, contributing articles on beauty, lifestyle and design to local magazines. Her background in architecture has her profiling trends and homes throughout the region. A travel junkie who likes to frequent Japan and Korea, Chinggay is the former editor-in-chief of Sparkling, a quarterly K-Pop publication and is also the author of “Popped and Popped, Too,” books based on the fun, frivolity and friendship centered on Korean Pop music.
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