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Organize + Energize: How Much do You Need to be Happy?

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


Does your home make you feel happy? It’s a pretty easy question, right? Does living in disorganization and chaos make you happy? If you are starting to feel like you’re making your life more complicated, trust that feeling. The more you hold on to physically and mentally, the more complicated your life becomes. Have you hit a breaking point? Have you realized that enough is enough and you need to make a change?

Being disorganized and having too much stuff will soon become a problem in the home. When there aren’t any systems to contain everything, it becomes a chaotic, stressful and an overwhelming environment. I’m not just talking about sentimental items here. Too much stuff also means, the unopened piles of mail, the magazines collecting dust, the random things sitting in your closets that you forgot you had and the piles of clothes in the closet that haven’t been worn in years.

Then you have items in your home that have meaning and are special to you, but after a while the really important things that mean something to you will mesh with the unimportant things. When you walk into your home, it ultimately all blends in together.

How does your home make you feel?  Grab a pen and paper and answer the following questions. Jot down any thoughts that come to mind when answering these questions. Clearing the mental clutter and putting things on paper will help you through this process.

  • Do you feel like your home is always chaotic?
  • How many piles of paper and mail do you have throughout the home? 
  • Are you embarrassed to have people into your home?
  • When was the last time you emptied your food pantry or clothes closets? 
  • Are you holding onto things that have no meaning to you? Will letting these items go give you a sense of freedom? 
  • Are your relationships suffering because of the clutter and disorganization?  
  • If you were told that you had to move tomorrow, how long would it take you to pack?
  • How much money a month are you spending on a storage unit or extra garage?
  • Is there a room in your home where the door is always shut? What’s your vision for this room?
  • Do you find yourself saying there isn’t enough time in the day? Are you busy but not productive?
  • Are you wasting money on items that never get used?
  • Are you happy in your home?

You know you have too much, but it’s so overwhelming to tackle the project and you just don’t know where to begin. You also have to be ready to make the commitment to change and you have to be ready to declutter. You can’t get organized without decluttering first. 

Are you ready to tackle this project? You will definitely hit a breaking point and you’ll wake up one day and say, “I’m ready.” I hope this article will make you think about how much you have and how decluttering and getting organized will make your life easier and allow you to become more efficient and productive. When you are ready, make a plan, break the process down and commit to tackling it.

Kristin Carcieri-MacRae, is an organizing & efficiency expert and owner of Organizing in RI. Kristin teaches her clients that living an organized lifestyle will save them time and money, decrease their stress levels and help them become more efficient and productive. Her articles have been published in local and national magazines. Kristin's CD, Organizing Basics, is a 1-hour guide for the person who wants to get organized but doesn't know where to begin. She is also available for organizing workshops.


Related Slideshow: Organizing Products For Your Closet

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Flip flop organizer

How many flip flops do you own? Are they thrown all over the closet floor? How long does it take you to find a match to one of them? Bed Bath and Beyond has a $9.99 flip flop organizer that holds 6 pairs of flip flops and hangs nicely in your closet. This is a must-have if you have more than 5 pairs of flip flops. I’ve purchased these for my clients and they work great!

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Scarf organizer

You love your scarves, but it takes you forever to locate one and you have to throw 5 around to find the one you are searching for. Use a scarf organizer and you will be able to see all your scarves and find them at a moment’s notice. Bed Bath and Beyond has a few different types of scarf organizers, including this one for $9.99.

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Belt organizer

How are you storing your belts? Are they in a tangled mess? Purchase a belt organizer for a cheap solution—they can be as inexpensive as $6.99 from the Container Store.

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Tie organizer

Keep your ties organized and hanging on a tie rack, or keep then rolled in a drawer organizer. Whichever way you choose to organize them, treat them with care. To take care of both your belts and your ties in one fell swoop, check out this organizer from the Container Store.

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Drawer organizer

This is a must for your underwear, socks, bras, nylons, etc. Drawer organizers will help to maximize space in your closet. You won’t believe the amount of space you will have once you contain these items in drawer organizers!

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Jewelry organizer

Are you always trying to detangle your necklaces? Think about how you grab your jewelry and then purchase an organizing system according to how you function. Before you purchase your container, take inventory of what you own and purchase accordingly.

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Shoe rack

Did you know people who didn’t own shoe racks were 7 times more likely to show up late for an event? Are your shoes in piles on the floor? Get them off the floor and contain them in a shoe rack. There are many options out there, like this one from Bed Bath and Beyond. Choose the shoe rack that is going to fit what you need to hold and fit in the space you are working with.

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Are you hanging your clothes on the wire hangers from the dry cleaner? Those hangers will ruin your clothes. Get rid of them and store your clothes on the hanger of your choice, but be consistent and stick with one type of hanger.

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How are you storing your handbags? Are they stored all over your closet? Are they in bins or crumpled up on the floor? It’s time to organize your bags. There are many options depending on the space you are working with. You can stand them up on a shelf, you can hang them, or if they are small, you can store them in a canvas bin. The choice is yours. Think about how you function and develop a system from there.

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Baseball cap organizer

How many baseball caps do you own? How are they organized in your closet now, and how long does it take you to find one? The Container Store (pictured here), Bed Bath and Beyond, and other stores sell this baseball cap organizer. I have a few clients that have purchased them and they love them!

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Function over flash

There are many variations on these products. Choose the product that is right for you. There are some organizing products I would never use, but other people might choose to use them. Choose the one that is going to be the most efficient and productive product for you and your family. Don’t choose a product because it’s pretty, choose it based on functionality. Search online for different products before you rush out and purchase a product. You may find that one store is more expensive than another. Don’t forget if you are going to Bed Bath and Beyond to use their 20% off coupons. If you don’t want to purchase these items, get creative and re-purpose items around the home, or make your own!

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Kristin MacRae

Kristin Carcieri-MacRae, the founder and owner of Organizing in RI, has always enjoyed finding creative ways to streamline the environment around her. She has appeared on air on Patricia Raskin's Positive Business Radio and her articles have been published in the Rhode Island Small Business Journal and New England Home Life. Kristin's CD, Organizing Basics, is a 1-hour guide for the person who wants to get organized but doesn't know where to start. She is also available for organizing workshops. Tune into her weekly radio show, Organize, Energize! on Mondays at 8:30am on www.talkstreamradio.com.


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