What does organized mean to you? This is something that I think a lot of people question. I mean, we see things on social media that make us think organized means everything in white open-shelves spaces with labels in bins. But that isn’t real life. One thing I have noticed is that when we talk about the word organized, we also have to talk about your mindset around organizing. Your mindset is the thing that can make or break anything in your life. Want an organized home? If your mind says that is impossible, you will never have an organized home. But if your mind tells you it is possible, you can totally achieve that goal. Now it is also possible to change how your mind thinks about things as well. So what is holding you back from living your best organized life? What is stopping you from having that organized home? My guess is it is you mindset around organizing. So let’s dig in and learn how we can change your mindset so you can find what organized means to you. Then actually make organized happen!
Start Your Day With Gratitude
The biggest thing I have done to change my mindset on life has been starting my day with gratitude. I have a gratitude journal that I write in every morning. I find the positive in the day and I write it down. If I am struggling, I look at what happened the previous day or year! The gratitude journal I love is a 5-year journal called The Happiness Project.
I also spend some time doing guided mediations on my phone. There are so many apps out there that offer guided mediation, so I suggest you try a few and see what resonates with you.
When you start your day in a positive way, it has a long-term effect on how the rest of your day is going to go. So start with gratitude to help guide you to a more positive day. This also helps get you in the right headspace for tackling clutter, dealing with unwanted items, and organizing things that make sense for you.
Set Expectations Around What Organized Looks Like For You
What does an organized home look like to you? This is the million dollar question.
In order to figure out what does organized mean, you have to figure out what it looks like for you in your home with your family.
Get really clear on what that word means to you in your home. Then write them down. On paper. With a pencil or marker. Because research shows that when you write, not type, your brain is able to process what you are writing.
In our home, organized looks like everything in a place with labels. Organized looks like less stuff for everyone to have to clean up. And organized looks like clear floors and countertops every night. Note that I said night. I know what my family can and cannot do, so every night we do an end-of-night tidy where everything goes back where it belongs. That is what organized looks like in our home. During the day, things are on the counters and the floors and bins are out. But before bed, everyone helps to clean up. I need clear counters, tidy rooms, and nothing on the floor to step on in the morning.
Reduce Social Media Distractions
While you are figuring out what does organized mean to you, you need to limit your social media distractions. What I mean by that is to stop scrolling the beautiful pictures you see. And start looking around your space. Use your space and what you can actually keep up with to decide what organized looks like in your home.
I had one client ask me to recreate a pantry she saw online. The pantry online was beautiful. And her pantry was really similar to the picture. So I organized the entire pantry like the picture. But I had to leave a bunch of stuff on her counters because they didn’t fit in her pantry based on the picture. She said she would find a space for them outside the pantry. Now I am sure you can guess what happened next. She called me a few weeks later asking me to redo the pantry so that all those items that didn’t fit, would fit again.
See, she loved the look of the pantry she showed me from social media, but it was not functional for her family at all. They didn’t purchase a variety of colored packages, so bins went to waste. Her kids couldn’t reach their snack foods because they were placed too high on a shelf. Nothing about that pantry was functional.
So we made it work for her and her family. And that is why you need to stop the social media distraction when it comes to deciding what does organized mean in your home.
Conquer Decision Fatigue
I have found that one of the easiest ways to get you distracted from your organizing goal is something called decision fatigue. Decision fatigue is when you max yourself out of your decision quota for the day. Yes, you do only have so many decisions you can make in a day. And once you hit that wall, you are done. So why waste it on silly things? And by silly things, I mean asking yourself if your home is organized. Or questioning your decluttering decisions because of a picture you saw on social media.
I have more information on decision fatigue in this post you may enjoy.
Decision fatigue can also happen when you are trying to clean up at the end of the day. Which is why clearly defining what organized looks like for you helps. For me, I have a designated place for every item in our home to go. I don’t have to think about it because they are all there with labels. So when I clean up, I just put things back where they go without having to think. This helps limit the clutter because I don’t have to spend time deciding where things should go.
What Does Organized Mean To You?
Organizing isn’t a one-size-fits-all type of thing. You have to find what works for you and your family. And when you find that, you find calm. Because you know you found something that you can keep up with. Something that helps you find what you need. And limits the clutter you see.
To find what organized means to you, start with gratitude. It really does help keep things in perspective. Then set your expectations around what organized looks like. Make sure to limit your social media distractions when setting your idea and definition of organized. Conquer decision fatigue in order to help you truly declutter and organize. When you don’t have to think about something, it makes it easier to stay organized. And remember, organizing isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. It is something that needs to work for you and your family together.