Category Archives: Stuff

Sometimes Organized isn’t enough

In an ideal world, the one we wave a magic duster at, our lives run smoothly. Everything is in its place and there’s a place for everything.  Why that isn’t so is the eternal question.

We should celebrate every small step we take, every area we clean, every item we find the right home for, but sometimes, not often, it isn’t enough.

When you study psychology you know that change takes place from one of two reasons. We change because we have to (external) or because we want to (internal).

Some of us also deal with people who have a different opinion of what clean and organized is.  I can acknowledge something is out of place but if it isn’t hurting anything I may not put it back until I need or want to.  Some people “have” to put things back. They either can’t stand it, have made it a high priority habit or just choose to do so.

OK let’s face it – Stuff Sheds. Yeah like dogs and cats stuff gives off dust or fluff or hides it. So having more stuff, even if organized, creates more cleaning challenges and  . . . AND if you have a high tolerance for “stuff” you can run into some major backlash from the “cleanies*”.  Does this matter? If you are living a fulfilled life (as much as one can) and getting things done and not breeding the next super germ is it that big of a deal?  Should it be? No, but can it be? Unfortunately and with a big sigh I have to say yes it can.

Not everyone understands recovering “messies*”.  Not everyone is going to see how far you came – only how far you have to go (in their minds).  Last of all, if you are in a situation where someone is trying to get some “dirt” (pun intended) on you it’s easy to take owning a lot of possessions and spin that into a dirty or unhealthy environment.  Is it fair, ethical or moral to do this? Heck no, but they still do.

Always be good to yourself. Stuff happens and unfair things happen. But if you have a moment of weakness, that fuzz just doesn’t call you to pick it up and dump it in the trash, just think that a “cleanie” on the way over and use a little external motivation to keep fighting the good fight.

*”Cleanie and Messie” are terms I read and adapted years ago from the books by Sandra Felton. Check them out! Sandra Felton Books on Amazon

Bag vs. Box Organization

Alright, as soon as I started this post a lens popped out of my glasses. Thankfully I knew which box (or in this case plastic drawer unit) held the small screwdriver to fix my glasses. Organization saves time and frustration and that’s what we are all about. So how does one organize on the cheap?

If one could wave a money wand and be able to go out and buy matching organizing boxes (totes or drawers etc.) it would be wonderful but many of us have to organize on the cheap.

So if it’s a quick “get ‘er done” type project your best bet is plastic storage bags. Now days they come in many sizes and you can get a box of each for under @$30.00 depending on how many of the larger sizes you get. When you are thinking of storage of items for any length of time you should go for the heavier “freezer” or “storage” type rather than the thinner food grade bags. Zipper close will save your fingers and accidents over the press and seals.

It seams logical to start layering bag within bag and to some degree this is fine. However when you get a lot of small bags you will find them slipping all over the place. This is a time to pull out the boxes in which to place the bags in. Again you should go for the best quality boxes you can afford but even boxes found around the house can be a temporary fix until you can upgrade to decorative storage or plastic containers.

Storage Suggestions on Amazon

All of this sort and store is good but there are a few rules that you need to keep in mind:
Have a toss bag. Dried up pens, markers etc. need to be tossed
Have a donate bag. If you have room and know you are going to carry through, donate that which you don’t need.
Don’t use garbage bags! Even if you live alone avoid using trash bags because you will risk things being tossed in the trash by accident!
Out of sight – out of mind. Even organized there needs to be some sort of labeling or tracking system in place.

Organization bag vs. box is one method of getting your life on track, but always evaluate your items workflow. If you have too many of one type of item or are not using others make sure you realize this and adjust spending patters.
Even stored things wear out. Make sure you use items or donate/toss/re-sort as time goes by.