This is the final of my New Year’s resolutions entries and we’re back to more traditional blog length. Mostly because I don’t think I can really give you much advice about getting organized. You sort of are, or you aren’t. If you aren’t, you can get great tips on organizing your work and home life at Get-It-Done Guy. He is particularly good at teaching you how to better manage your time, from controlling email backlog to streamlining to-do lists.
The best advice is probably just to get rid of stuff. Before my move from the East Coast, I read that most people could get rid of one-third of their possessions without missing them, so that became my benchmark for every category in my apartment. It was easy for furniture since the only pieces I wanted to keep were my brand-new mattress and the few pieces of furniture I had inherited from my parents. Books and kitchenware were probably the hardest items to eliminate. But I did it and it was all very cleansing. The only thing I ever regretted was this fabulous sauté pan I had gotten in France. I would kill to get another one.
For some people, clothes are the hardest. One of the books I mentioned earlier this week, What You Wear Can Change Your Life, has an entire chapter on culling your wardrobe, and another on storage and organization of your closet. Be ruthless! Beyond items that don’t fit or have stains, which should always go, I find a good test of whether or not you should keep an item is to ask yourself the following: “Would I care if I ran into my crush (mother-in-law, ex’s new girlfriend, arch-nemesis, etc.) wearing this?” If the answer is yes, get rid of it!
And remember, please don’t just throw things away, even if you aren’t using it, that doesn’t mean that someone else can’t or won’t. I found my old prom dress over the holidays and, while my first thought was that no one would be caught dead in that style today (think Laura Ashley in the 80s), I realized a tailor could probably turn all that gorgeous raspberry cotton into some lovely table napkins.