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Strategize Organize LLC
Newsletter Volume 4, Issue 3

"The Dreaded Room" A Project for the New Year


Often people have a place where they put things that they want to get out of their main living space or that they don’t want to deal with.  For some this place is the garage, for others it is an extra bedroom, and still others it is the basement.  This newsletter discusses some steps for organizing this space. 


1. Schedule time in your calendar.
Some people like to plan big workdays.  Other people aren’t able to commit to large blocks of time so they go for the 3 hour (or smaller) block of time over a longer period.  One thing to note: the big workday can wear some people out and then they have little energy to finish a project.

2. Notice categories.
Take a general look at what you have and notice some of the different categories.  Here are some sample categories:  laundry, clothing that needs a decision (store, give away), kids clothes, recycle, boxes to sort, items for another family member, toys, etc. 

3. Move things into their zones.
Once you have a sense of your categories identify areas or zones into which you can sort your categories.  For example, this section of wall space is for laundry, this area in the corner is for boxes to be sorted.  Start with the most obvious zones.  Collect like things together in that zone.  It sometimes helps to post the zone name on the wall.   If your space isn’t by a wall write the name boldly on a piece of paper and display it prominently. 

4. Sort.
Now choose one zone to start with and one box or bin within that zone.  Start sorting the contents into piles.  For example, you might have trash, recycle, donate, another part of the house, doesn’t have a home.  Once you’re done with one box move on to the next. 

5. Deal with the piles you have created.
Well before your block of time is up take time to deal with the piles you have created. 
  • For things you want to keep but don’t have homes for, either give them homes during your organizing session, wait until you are done with a zone, or wait until you have sorted a few different zones. 
  • For the piles that you know what to do with – deal with them.  Take out the trash and the recycling.  Take your donations to your car.  Deliver the things that go to another part of the house and put them in their home.
6. Give yourself a pat on the back then pull out your calendar.
Congratulate yourself for your work and schedule your next date.


It can be easy to feel overwhelmed.  One way to lessen that feeling is to continually remind yourself of the specific task you are working on.  For example, I am working on sorting this box so I’m not going to think about any other box.  By giving yourself a reminder you will stay more focused and energized. 

Happy New Year,

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Copyright (C) 2008 Susan Hunsberger Professional Organizer All rights reserved.
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