How to Start an Organization Project

Organization comes pretty easy to me. Since the home I grew up in was in total and utter chaos at all times, my Dad says that I must have some how tapped into my great-great-Grandmother’s personality. She was a German immigrant who ran a dairy farm in Kansas. Her house was super organized and her farm and home were managed well, she was not a woman to be messed with. I so wish I could have met her, but I do feel her in my bones.

Keeping my home orderly is very important to me. If my house is messy or things are not where they are supposed to be, I feel anxiety rising up. I begin to not feel safe in my own home, which of course, is how I felt as a child. But even if you came from a happy home, I think organization is really important.

It helps busy moms do their jobs better. If you don’t always put your keys in the same spot, you are wasting valuable time searching for them. Time you could be spending hanging out with your family or do something to relax.

Starting a new organization project is easy for me, I enjoy the process and the outcome. It helps calm me down and makes me feel good. Having the urge to organize something is my cue that I have some emotional homework to do.  It gives me a chance to sit with my feelings, explore them and then release it. But I think one of my biggest pieces of advice would be to start very, very small.

So say your child’s playroom needs to be organized. Don’t just say I am off to organize the entire playroom. Pick one thing in the playroom to organize, say the art supplies. And that’s it. Take 20 minutes and complete the task from beginning to end. It won’t feel so overwhelming and you still have a finished product at the end to give yourself a pat on the back.

Another big tip is just to think of your organization as a means to contain things. If you get a couple of bins, it will automatically look organized, even if each bin is not perfect on the inside. Just try to contain the mess.

I also tend to do things in stages, or an evolution of sorts, even in one area. So when I first got my craft table, I just folded up the fabric and threw tools into one big bin. Then later I added these and separated and contained everything better. A lot of that has to do with money, bins and storage things are expensive, so I buy a little at a time and build on the organization I already have.

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HouseLogic is a free source of information and tools from the National Association of Realtors® that helps homeowners make smart decisions and take responsible actions to maintain, protect, and enhance the value of their home. HouseLogic helps homeowners plan and organize their home projects and also provides how-tos, news, home improvement advice, and information about taxes, home finances, and insurance. Learn more at

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by HouseLogic via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of HouseLogic

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  • Emily @Random Recycling
    July 24, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Love the labels. Are they the new Martha Stewart ones?

    • Stephanie
      July 24, 2012 at 1:40 PM

      They are similar, but I got them at a local business called The Polka Dot Press. They are great!

  • Defessa
    July 29, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    Thank You! This is exactly what I needed at this very time. You have offered hope for my organization. For the past year or so, I have been spending my time and energy (both physical and spiritual) on some health issues and not on my house. I am now coming to the end of my rope–figuratively–with the mess my home has gotten into. I still cannot cope with big projects, but breaking them down into small areas makes so much sense; emotionally/physically/financially.
    One thing I have decided is that when I do organize, while it will be functional enough for my husband, it will also be pretty for me!

    • Stephanie
      July 29, 2012 at 10:58 PM

      So glad to hear that. Good luck! Let me know if I can help in any way.

  • Lia B
    December 30, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    Just found you via Pinterest and signed up (loved that pop up). I am trying to organize my own dedicated scraproom and am completely overwhelmed. I will try to do it one step at a time.

    • Stephanie
      December 31, 2012 at 2:00 AM

      Glad you liked the pop-up! They can be so annoying, but a nessary part of an online business, I tried to think of the most entertaining way to ask for emails I could! I don’t know what I am gonna have it say, when that song is not popular anymore! 🙂 That is all you gotta do, one foot in front of the other, one step at a time.