We have been on a kick around here to get our house organized, cleaned and set up in a way that makes our space work better for us. We have lived here for 3 yrs now and some things just needed to change as now my hubby and I both work from home. And a couple of other little things. One thing that has helped us in the process of reorganizing, cleaning and setting up is starting with our worst place first.
I don’t mean my dirtiest space. By worst I mean the place… that you are most likely to dump stump stuff and deal with it later. The place that you would not normally clean and organize first. I think that as a woman and keeper of my home I tend to want to clean areas that I use the most aka the kitchen and places that company will see first.
But with this big project of revamping how we have our house organized and set up dealing with that worst place first has made the process soooo much easier!
Cleaning and Organizing Your Worst Place First
Starting with your worst place will make it easier to have a place ready for items that you need to remove from your living areas to storage areas and know where it is for future use. My hubby tends to keep stuff in-case we need it one day. I tend to toss or donate. Find a balance that works for all the people in your home. We by no means are minimalist but we have changed how we live. To keep things that are useful and that give us joy. (And no we haven’t read the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up but we both have heard a lot about it.)
Pick your Place to Start
You will have to know what area in your home is your worst place to start. For us that was our shed. Here is how we worked through our house.
- The Shed- This is where we keep our outside items rakes, shovels, sleds etc.
- The Attic- We keep stored items up in the attic such as baby item, seasonal, canning jars. Things we don’t need out or access to very often. Make sure you label and keep like items together!
- The Garage- We keep larger tools and back up items in here.
- The Laundry Room- We keep smaller tools in our laundry room and store our extras in here such as there was a good deal on dish soap and now we have 10! This is all organized and labeled!
- The Storage Closet- We now keep items that we don’t want in the attic like extra blankets and towels. We also keep electronics and some files in this area. We all have a bin that we keep of thing we don’t want to get rid of but don’t use aka-college class notes.
If at all possible remove all items from area. This is not always possible but if you can you will have a fresh place to work with. We cleared everything our of the shed swept it out before putting items back in the shed.
Organize and Label as You Go
My hubby is all about labels! (and Sticky notes!) When cleaning and organizing if you label as you go it will make it easier to find later. Everyone will know where items go when they’re done using them! We didn’t label in the shed but we did everywhere else.
Trash or Donate
As your cleaning your space get rid of items that you don’t use/want. If it is not donatable (is that a word!) throw it out. Make a donation pile/box. I tend to donate to The New England Epilepsy Foundation as they pick up at my house!
Moving to Your Living Areas
Because we had cleaned, organized and set up our worst places in our home first moving into our living areas of the house it made it so much easier to clean, organize and set up the areas we used everyday. When I found items that I wanted to remove from my living area space I now had a system in place for those items. I could donate, trash or place in one of our storage areas. Our storage areas were ready!
By having my shed organized and clean I was able to remove items from our garage into the shed. I wasn’t just dumping items in there as I just spent time cleaning up the shed and I wanted to keep it that way! And this continued throughout the house. Items I didn’t want in the laundry room that better fit in with garage items could be easily moved into garage.
I worked from my “worst” living area to the “best”. Here is the order I went through my house.
- Closets- Most of our closets in our home are storage only 1 is really used for clothes. Honestly they probably still need a little more work to be more efficient!
- Spare room- We use to use our spare room as a walk in closet/changing room. But just recently we changed this and now it is more of my craft room/ kitty area! As we have reorganized how we do things I will have to redo this room again. I am sure we all have areas that have to be done more than once when you make changes!
- Bathrooms- These were quick and easy!
- Bedrooms- These too were some of the easiest rooms! My daughter closet still need to be done! 🙂 But she finally has more space in her room as we took the crib out!
- Play Room- I have a small in-home daycare so this room get cleaned and organized all the time. Less is More when it comes to toys. I have a system for rotating out toys. Kiddos will play with toys for longer amounts of time when it is not over crowed with to many options. Figure out what they are most interested in and put other toys away. I rotate toys about every 6-8 weeks.
- Kitchen- There were items in my kitchen that I just haven’t used since we moved here. I really did a purge. I also took out items I use during the holidays and put them in a storage area.
- Dining Room- Umm we don’t really use our dinning room area as a dinning room… it has become more of our schooling area/kids crafting place! We have changed the set up of this room completely and wow we have lots of space in there!
- Living Room- We didn’t change that much with this area so in mainly just got a good decluttering and cleaning 🙂
Now that we have organized, cleaned and set up our house in a way that fits our needs better it has made it easier to keep up the maintenance and cleaning of our home.
Have you ever started Cleaning and Organizing your Worst Place First?