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Ask The Organizer – Biggest organizing mistake?

Q: “What is the biggest mistake you see people make when they are trying to organize their space?”

My answer is quick and simple: They go out and buy a bunch of stuff that they think they need to get organized. You know, containers in varying sizes, pretty baskets, etc. The problem is, this is literally step 4 (not step 1) of our organization process. When people jump to this step first, without knowing exactly what they will put in the containers, where they will go, or if they even need them, they almost always end up with more clutter – container clutter! I’m not against containers, and think they can be a great tool for maintaining organization, by defining a place for certain items and creating boundaries around the quantity of that particular type of item or supply, but wait to purchase them. You may also find that as you go through your things and look around your space, you may have things you can use as containers lying around if you just “think outside the box” (pun intended). Try using sturdy gift bags or shopping bags, shoe boxes, serving trays or even large vases that you already have instead of buying “container clutter.”

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