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Strategize Organize LLC
Newsletter Volume 7, Issue 5

Organic Organizing


Sometimes we're able to take a bunch of time and work on a large organizing project.  Although this can be really satisfying, it isn't always practical or possible to do.  This newsletter looks at ways to organize that are natural and fit into the flow of life without needing to carve out a large chunk of time.  

Examples of Organic Organizing

1. We go to put away a pot and get frustrated because there is no room.  We look around the cupboard and happen to notice a pot that has been taking up space and hasn't been used in ten years.   So, we decide to put the pot in the donate box. 
  • Results: More room in the cabinet, and it only took an extra minute of time.
  • Observations: We did not organize the whole cabinet. We just moved along a pot that we noticed was taking up space and not being useful.
2. Prepare yourself; I know that this issue is no longer relevant to many of you, but it does convey the concept . . .We have a list of outdated phone numbers, and we never seem to have the time to make an updated list.  So, we hang up a blank sheet of paper, and as we organically use the important numbers in our day-to-day life, we write them on the piece of paper.
  • Results: The only extra work was hanging up a blank sheet of papers.  Over time all the important numbers got transferred. 
  •  Observations: We did not look in drawers and notebooks and files for all the important numbers, but, instead, as we used one, we wrote it down. 
3. We get two magazines in the mail.  We go to put the magazines in the magazine pile and notice that it is about ready to tip over.  We don't have time to go through all the magazines. So, we pull about four from the bottom (or as close to the bottom as we can go without tipping the pile) and quickly check the date and look at the cover.  We decide that we want to keep one but the other three can move along to the recycle bin. 
  • Results: We had a net gain of one magazine space. We already needed to walk to the magazine pile to put the magazines away, so the only extra time we took was pulling out four magazines, glancing at the covers, and putting the 3 in recycling.  
  • Observations: We did not sort through the whole stack.  We moved along three magazines, say from 2010. 
4. We recognized that we want a collection of portable supplies for paperwork.  We don't have time or energy to think through what supplies we need.  So, we get an empty shoebox, and as we organically, over the next couple of weeks, use office supplies in the dining room, living room, kitchen, and basement, we put them in the box.
  • Results:  There is no extra work involved except for finding an empty container. 
  • Observations: We only have the supplies in the box that we actually use. 

Final Thoughts

It could be really easy to get pulled into a larger organizing project . . ."Oh, while I'm pulling this pot out from the back, I might as well just look over all the pots and since I have the pots out, I'll just wipe down the cabinet."  I'm not saying that we shouldn't ever go through our pots or clean our cabinets.  But this newsletter is all about how some organizing can be organic and natural.
Perhaps my next newsletter will be about "Fair Trade" Organizing.

All my best,

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