It’s official! 2017 is on full throttle. It’s the third month of the year already. Was it just me, or did January seem longer than its thirty one days? Chai! I ‘saw’ small pepper in January! I know! I know! I am supposed to make pepper soup out of the pepper right? I almost did not have the complete ingredients for the pepper soup by the time the December festivities and I were through with each other!
Of course, at the beginning of the year, resolutions are flying left, right and centre. But, wairraminute, I hear resolutions are so old school, so instead, we use goals now. I can hazard a guess that improved personal organization featured prominently on a sizeable number of annual goals lists at the turn of the year. For many of us, being better organized automatically equates to acquiring larger accommodation. Not entirely correct.
Me thinks that if one is disorganized in a small space, the level of disorganisation may not only be replicated but eventually multiplied in the larger space unless certain pitfalls are avoided!
Critical to the success of a good number of our 2017 goals is the proper organization of our personal spaces. This not only leads to the maximization of our spaces but increases efficiency and productivity. It has been said that order leads to increase and I couldn’t agree more. There is a popular Nigerian idiom that goes thus “Wetin dey For Sokoto dey For Shokoto” which in my translation simply means that what one thinks is required from afar is actually right within your grasp. With the challenging yet interesting times we currently face in the country, putting on our thinking caps with regards the optimization of our physical spaces is imperative.
At the core of achieving organisation in our spaces is the riddance of clutter. Clutter is a funny thing, it starts in trickles and in the blink of an eyelid, it has become the landlord! From experience, one does not realise there is a problem until one is literally drowning in it! Getting rid of clutter is usually easier said than done! Veterans in the clutter war can tell you for free that its riddance is certainly not a day’s job. After all, it didn’t take just a day for our spaces to get cluttered, but the good news is that hope is not lost!
Here are some de-cluttering tips.
- Begin with the end in mind. Vision is the key to success. Have a clear picture of the space ultimately desired. Go through the space as though with the eyes of a stranger, mentally noting things that are out of place and need to be taken out.
- Embark on a ruthless purge. Rule of thumb is anything you have not needed in the past twelve months, you would not miss. Exceptions of course to this rule include important documents, books, baby items, etcetera. For both sexes, the purge must be extended to our wardrobes. Discard old and undersized clothing as well as unused accessories. In kitchens, food storage containers missing their covers, chipped plates and mugs, old appliances in various states of disrepair need to go. Some of us have enough party souvenir plates and mugs to comfortably start a viable crockery rental business!
- Tackle spaces methodically and in an orderly fashion. For example, start and end with the living room as against treating more than one space at a time. Working haphazardly would tire you out easily and the temptation to abandon the purge would be high.
- Sort and categorize the various items into donations, storage, display and disposal.
- Key to winning the clutter war is proper storage. Before tackling the clutter, make certain to earmark the storage space(s). Also, ensure your storage materials like plastic containers (clear containers are preferable), wicker baskets or cartons are at hand. Same goes for the labelling items like paper, markers, masking (scotch) tape, etc.
- Creativity is required in the design and decoration of our spaces. Many young families face challenges with storage due to space constraints. Beyond the kitchen, select furniture with built-in storage space. For example, go for bed frames that incorporate ample storage units. Ottomans with removable tops, coffee tables that also double as storage are ideal in the living area. As Google has now become our friend, so also should friendship with shelving units and other storage solutions be aggressively pursued for both decorative and storage purposes in our homes and offices! In our offices, asides from minimal paper usage, digital means of storage should be utilized. External storage devices such as flash drives and external hard drives should be deployed in archiving our projects. Cloud Technology that facilitates the storage and easy accessibility of large volumes of data should be fully embraced.
- As with every other venture, consistence is required to achieve success. Little actions eventually add up. Set out a few minutes daily to put things back in their proper places and also get rid of items not required.
Here’s to a better organised and productive 2017.
Photo Credit: Monkey Business Images | Dreamstime.com