I think we’re all pretty much aware that once we clean up our kitchen, do our laundry, or pay our bills we can’t really sit back and say “Well, that’s behind me!”. These routine tasks need to be repeated over and over to stay on top of clutter and stress.
Consider that this is also true of any organizing project.
You’ve done it! you have finally finished organizing your (fill in the blank- files, closet, workshop) and it feels so good. You cross the project off your “to do” list.
But wait, it’s not really “finished”. It needs a maintenance plan. Otherwise, a week or month later, you will stand in front of that “finished” project and wonder what catastrophic event happened and could this area be declared a disaster zone.
Let’s look at a couple of examples:
Your bedroom closet is a sight to behold. All the blouses are arranged by short sleeve and long sleeve. Your slacks are hung by color. There is space between hangers. Lovely! Now, to maintain that order, take a moment and turn all your hangers backwards. The first time you wear an item, turn the hanger to the correct position. This way you keep track of what you are actually wearing. When you buy a new items of clothing, consider getting rid of something you already have (maybe one of those items whose hanger is still backwards). When laundry is done, hang up what goes into your closet in the correct place right away. It’s easier now because you have the room. When you take items out of the closet to wear, put the empty hanger to one side of the closet. Once or twice a year schedule a time to reorganize and clean out your closet. Don’t wait for it to become a disaster again. Following these maintenance practices will keep your closet looking great.
Your pantry is beautiful! All expired foods have been disposed of and your goods are nicely lined up, in containers, labeled, and reachable. To maintain that order, every time you come home from the store, put your pantry items away correctly. Don’t just shove them in where there is room. Have all soups in one place. Ditto for fruits, vegetables, pasta, cereals. If you bought a an of tomato soup and you already have one in the pantry, put the new one behind the older one so items don’t languish and become expired. At least once a year, schedule a time to take items out, wipe down your shelves, and check for nearly expired items.
I recommend using a zone plan for maintenance on your entire home. This keeps you from zigzagging around with your projects. Divide your home into zones and schedule one zone for each month.
I offer a teleclass to help you with this process.
A little maintenance on a regular schedule keeps the big disasters from happening.