Create a home for your objects, information, and time. When you and those you live with can find and return items, it creates simplicity and peace.
Where does it live?
Whether you are working with objects, information, or time, everything needs a home. Objects include anything three-dimensional – clothing, books, toys, etc. Information includes documents (physical and digital) and photos. Since we all have the same 24 hours in one day, we must organize our events and tasks in our available time.
Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be useful.William Morris
Before you begin organizing, ask yourself these questions:
- Do I want to find a home for this object, information, or time-consuming activity?
- Is this object, information, or time-related activity functional or obligatory?
- Does it bring joy?
If you answer no to any of these questions, consider releasing the object through donation or trash, shredding or deleting the information, or excusing yourself from the activity.
If any of your answers are yes, then be intentional about where you keep items in your space.
- Objects: Return the item to its home after each use.
- Information: Ask yourself why it is necessary to keep this (physical or digital) document.
- Time: Find a home for your activities, obligations, and self-care. Follow through on commitments to yourself and others.
How to Begin Creating a Home
Start small. A great place to start is the “family drop zone,” typically found on a kitchen counter, dining room table, or hall table. Firstly, sort by category before deciding where the item’s home is. Typical groups include health & beauty, clothing, coupons, financial paperwork, school paperwork, magazines, etc. Once you have sorted by category, pick one and ask yourself, “Is it to keep, recycle, shred, or donate to charity?” If you are keeping the item, return it to its home.
Set a time limit. I recommend that you give yourself at least 30 minutes. But even as little as fifteen minutes is okay if that is all the time you have. However, never work longer than three hours, as it will drain you physically, mentally, and emotionally. Do not over-commit. Be realistic with your time and other obligations.
Put your phone down. A study by UC Irvine found that the ability to refocus after a distraction is roughly 23 minutes! A distraction can be as simple as the ding of a text message or the ring of a phone call. If you dedicate time to creating homes for your items, be intentional and silence notifications.
A place for everything and everything in its place.Unknown
If you feel overwhelmed, pause and take a deep breath. There are many ways to create simplicity and deeper peace in your home. You are not searching for perfection; seek functional, streamlined processes.