I went to a seminar last night through Junior League. It was put on Jenny LeBel from Organizing Angels. She gave us a list of tips for better organizing yourself.
*Keep an Action File on your desk or kitchen counter for current and ongoing lists in alphabetical order: Bills to Pay, Birthdays, Coupons, Pending/Follow-Up, Recipes, To Call, To Do, to File, To Read, and Upcoming Events.
*Buy a Date Planner or Wall Calendar to organize your family's life. Use a different color for each member of your family.
*Start small-Organize for 15 minutes a day-a drawer or cupboard. It doesn't have to be overwhelming; it can be fun! And it's very grounding.
*Sort like things together and be amazed at how many duplicate items you find! And to think you just spent more money buying another one! And you will be so happy when you find that long-lost item you've been searching for, for years.
*Discard junk mail as soon as it comes in; file your bills to pay in the Action File; place appropriate items in Action File daily or ASAP. Don't let it pile up.
*Pay Bills online-it's quick and easy through your bank.
*File Greeting card in specific file folders: Anniversaries, Babies, Birthdays, Blank, Congratulations, Holiday, Father's Day, Friendship, Get Well, Mother's Day, New home, Special Occasion, Sympathy, Thank you, Weddings, etc..
*Walk around your house with a trash bag and throw everything away that is obvious trash. This should only take about 10 or 15 minutes.
*Read up on easy Feng Shui Concepts-for peace and flow of your home or office.
*Clean out your closet and donate whatever you haven't worn in 6 months or no longer fits. There are many people who have nothing.
*When something new comes in, something old goes out! This will keep you organized and inventory in check.
*Organize your clothes by color.
*Use wire shelves in your kitchen or bathroom to double your cabinet space.
*Throw out food in refrigerator or pantry that is out dated.
*Keep two bins under your sink-one for trash and one for recycle.
*If space allows, give each child a spot to hang his backpack, jacket, homework, sports equipment, etc.-he/she will always know where it is.
*Organize kids' art/schoolwork/memorabilia in plastic bins and label them.
*Organize digital photographs in computer files or create online albums (Shutterfly, Snapfish, Kodak, Flickr).
*Add all your contact information to your computer Address Book.
*Organize your e-mail and your computer documents in specific files.
*Use recycled or the back of use paper for printing when possible.
*Get rid of old magazines-cut out the articles you want to keep; read them right away or file them in your Action File.
*Keep a Coupon file folder in your car for various stores and services (i.e. bookstores, car services, groceries, restaurants, services).
*Put all your coupons you need for the day in "Today's Coupon's Folder".
*Keep another bin in your car for : Returns, Things to give to friends, extra water, things to occupy the kids while driving, dry cleaning, etc.
*Buy clear plastic storage bins for everything you need and label them: Holiday, Memorabilia, Kid's Art/School Work, Children's Gifts, Adult Gifts, Kid's Theme Parties, Electronics, House Decor, Photo Frames, Warranties, and Instruction Booklets.
*Keep earrings separated in ice trays.
*Use canvas bags for groceries-keep them in the car so you don't forget!
*20 minutes on the treadmill or out on a walk is not only great for your physical body, but is great for your mental health, attitude, and keeps depression at bay. Keep your body moving!
*Check out Professional Organizer Peter Walsh. He's on Oprah and gives great tips!
*Watch HGTV (Home and Garden TV) shows for all the latest ideas and hints on Organizing, Decluttering, Decorating, etc.
*Read Real Simple Magazine for great ideas.
*Enlist your family's support and call upon your friends to help or trade tasks!