How to Organize

Is clutter taking over your home? Do you need some fresh ideas on how to organize your stuff? Check out these RADICAL tips from the Domestic CEO.

Amanda Thomas
5-minute read
Episode #60

How to Organize

When it comes to learning how to organize, there are steps to follow, no matter which area of your home you are organizing. I meet a lot of people who tell me that they just aren’t wired to know how to organize, but I believe that anyone can learn. For the past 5 years, I’ve been teaching my Moxie Girl team members how to organize for our clients. Some of them had a natural eye for organizing, but most of them were simply willing to learn the process. Today, I’m going to teach you the organizing tips we use to train our team members.>

See also: 6 Rules for an Organized Home

To help remember the steps, I want you to start thinking of yourself as an organizing RADICAL. The letters in the word RADICAL make an acronym for the steps toward organizing success:

R is for REMOVE – The first step to any organizing project is to remove the items from the space. This may mean that you remove everything in an entire area, like your bathroom cabinets, or just one shelf, like in your pantry. Only remove what you need to finish that area before moving on. Before you remove everything from a larger area, like a closet, make sure that you have allotted enough time to completely finish the job. There’s nothing worse than getting pulled away from an organizing project half-way through and then being left with a mess for days or weeks until you can get back to it.

A is for ARRANGE – As items are removed, start arranging them into groups. You’ve heard me use the phrase, “Like with like,” before, and this is where it applies. Think of how stores are laid out to help guide you if you aren’t sure how to organize your things into categories. If you are walking through the grocery store and wanted to get a box of cereal, you wouldn’t look in the pickle aisle. You would go to the cereal aisle because that’s where all the cereal is kept. Likewise, if you went to Target, you wouldn’t expect to find bottles of hydrogen peroxide or vinegar in the makeup aisle. You want to follow a similar model when organizing your home because it will help you more easily find what you are looking for when you need it.

Putting items together by category will help you create piles of items that need to be completely removed from the space too. These piles will likely be along the lines of:

  • DONATE: These items are in good condition, but haven’t been used in more than a year or you simply no longer want them.

  • REPAIR: These are items that can be in excellent condition if a repair is made. If something goes into this pile, you should be able to have it fixed in 30 days or less, either by you or a professional. If you don’t get it fixed in that amount of time, choose to donate or throw it away.

  • TRASH: Immediately bag any items that are beyond repair, or are no longer needed. This pile can be subdivided into trash, recycle, and shred as well.

  • WRONG ROOM: These items belong in another space. Put these items into a basket so you can easily deliver them to the correct rooms all at once.