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Planning an organizing project? Don’t make this big mistake!

by respaced on January 12, 2011

Will this amazing bookshelf solve all of your problems?
Or just add to them?

I see this happen all the time, so I thought I would blog about it in an attempt to keep you from tumbling down the same path:

A person decides that today is the day they are going to get organized! So before they do anything else, they get in the car and drive down to the Container Store (or Storables, Target, Costco, etc) and spend about $200 on cute matching bins and shiny glass canisters and monstrous plastic tubs.

Then they get home, look around their room of choice (which is bursting at the seams with all of their unsorted stuff) and realize they have no idea how or where they are going to use their new products!

Their organizing products have become clutter.

See, organizing products — no matter how useful or clever they seem — become clutter if we apply them at the beginning of the organizing process, rather than at the end after we have dug out. Products have their place, to be sure. But first you must figure out how the disorganization occurred, analyze the needs of the space, and sort through everything in the room before you buy any new products.

Not what you want to hear, I know. It’s so much fun (at least for some of us) to walk through the Container Store and pick out all of the pieces which we KNOW will solve all of our problems and drastically improve our lives. Those stores can be so seductive!

The truth is, most people have enough storage devices and space. Their problem is it’s just stuffed to the gills. So once I work with clients and we pare down what they own, the storage they have is usually adequate to contain what’s left. If not, then — and only then — do we make that trip to the store.

So consider yourselves forewarned, dear readers. Don’t buy any organizing products until you have done the dirty work of sorting through everything you own first.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Jasmine January 11, 2012 at 4:34 am

Great advice, especially since I find it all-too-tempting to head over to The Container Store and buy a mess of products that *seem* perfect but end up in the garage, while my real stuff remains unorganized and cluttered.


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