How is your Thursday? Are you winding down your summer and embracing the autumn weather? I have to say, I’m loving the cooler weather. 

I’ve got some practical organizing advice for you today –

Put things away.

I know. Obvious, right?

But seriously, having stuff scattered about willy-nilly can add stress – either the low level kind you are not aware of or the high level variety you are so aware of.

You may be thinking any number of things about this:

“That’s genius – I had not even considered that!”

“Yeah, I should really do that.”

“That’s a thought, but I probably won’t.”

“Umm, I am totally all over that, but others around here have never embraced that idea.”

“I don’t want to put things away – I will need them again soon.”

“Really? I know that. I do that.”

Did I miss anything?

This is the kind of counsel that you have heard a million times in all kinds of ways throughout your life. You may embrace it, you may ignore it, or you may be somewhere in between. 

You may know it and want to be a champ at it, but life gets in the way. Let’s talk about this for a minute. I think most of us can relate.

Imagine a few scenarios:

You are making dinner and have lots of prep dishes and ingredients flying. You love the process (or not) of getting this meal on the table, but the after dinner mess is super overwhelming. It’s soooo tempting to just leave it, possibly left for a really long time.

You are looking forward to a night of snuggling on the couch. You light a candle, get some popcorn going, fluff all the pillows, and grab your favorite blanket. After closing the book or turning off Netflix, you are just too tired to do anything but wander off to bed.

You spend hours elbow deep involved in your favorite hobby. You get all the supplies out and feel quite accomplished. You admire your progress and lose track of time.

Do any of these sound familiar? 

It’s hard to put things away when we are feeling overwhelmed, tired, or rushed. I’ve been there. I will be there. Just like you.

How about a few tips:

Know you’re going to be overwhelmed? Grab a few things along the way. This works great when cooking. As you are finished with an ingredient or a measuring spoon, put it away right then. This totally alleviates the giant pile at the end of the meal.

Know you’re going to be tired? Enjoy what you’ve got planned and afterward grab just one thing, with a plan to grab a few more later. When you put even one thing away, like the popcorn bowl in the dishwasher, you can high five yourself and sleep tight. 

Know you’re going to be rushed? Plan time to clean up. When you have a block of time for a project, leave the last bit of time for clean up. Set a “time to clean up” alarm. Sounds a little cheesy, but it totally works. This also works great for kids.

Already have a giant pile of stuff to get back to where they belong? No worries – You got this.

  • If you are feeling overwhelmed, tired, rushed, stressed, or just not interested –
  • Try putting a few things away at a time. 
  • Or try grabbing one thing as you walk by and put it away. 
  • Or try grabbing a few things that belong together, either in another room, another space altogether (like donations or other people’s stuff), or a trash can, and get them to those places.
  • Or try grabbing a friend to help.

What are your thoughts? Any other suggestions? Please share!

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