As we’ve come to live in a material world, obtaining more “stuff” has created a cluttered reality and disorganization for many. Additionally, the nation’s people are growing more interested in preserving the sanctuary of their homes, and it has become very important to feel good about the things that we have, as well as look good. Several national organizations have emerged assisting people to organize their belongings. A growing number of systems manufacturers have sprouted nationwide to help build a place for everything whether it’s a closet, an office, garage or other storage system.
The old saying goes, “a clear desk is a clear mind.” This also follows the Feng Shui belief that clutter denies us of valuable personal energy, which might otherwise open up our lives to living more fully. Letting go can be most difficult for the average person. What does someone do that finds comfort in the chaos, or can’t detach from the things they have grown to love?
De-clutter and get organized! As unimportant items get mixed up with important ones, it becomes a hodgepodge catastrophe of ‘stuff”. Have you ever found yourself searching like a mad dog for an important item and turning up things you haven’t seen in ages? Digging through piles and boxes is quite time consuming. Although the treasure hunt can be fun for a brief time, the disarray quickly weighs heavy on the mind of the seeker whom is spending valuable time searching for a lost item. Of course, there will be more time for living when we aren’t spending such a great deal of time searching for misplaced belongings or worried about where they might be. The important task becomes clearing out items that no longer serve us, and making a space for everything we use!
So, you’re at a stalemate and unsure of how or where to begin? The stagnant energy from the clutter is the cause of your dismay; so don’t beat yourself up for having allowed things to get so out of order. This serves no one or nothing! Before you can learn what you need in terms of storage, you must find out what you have to store.
There is no reason to delay in taking small steps to clearing the clutter and getting organized. An easy Feng Shui “cure” to start; remove nine items each day for nine consecutive days. Once you take this first step, you will begin to feel lighter and more encouraged to proceed. It’s best to begin with a small drawer and get rid of all the odds and ends that may have collected over time. Have you ever had visitors stop by un-announced and you opened a drawer and whisked away the clutter that happened to be sitting on the counter? This “junk” drawer is a catchall and contains lots of nick knacks that have little or no use. Feng Shui reminds us that every item holds energy and collects and keeps this energy from you if its not properly placed.
Perhaps it’s your closet that needs a major overhaul. Styles change, and so do you – so honor the changes by first removing any clothing that you haven’t worn or needed in over two years (6 months for those that have stayed on top of their stuff). If it doesn’t fit or is out of style, donate to your favorite charity or pass along to someone you know would enjoy using it. Shoes, belts, ties and clothing can find new homes when you haven’t had a chance to enjoy them on a regular basis. Hey – they have feelings too, and you surely wouldn’t want the clothing to start feeling rejected! That’s just more unconstructive energy behind the thoughts you are generating!
The garage is another area that might collect an overflow of things that have no home. It piles up over the years, and once again you have another area of clutter and disorganization. Begin by creating piles of things that have a proper home inside the house, and those items that need to be kept in the garage. Separate areas for pantry items such as paper goods and cleaning products from food items, and another area for gardening/lawn supplies, craft items etc.
Once that process is complete, you might call a closet organization company to come to your home and design an efficient system that best suits your needs. The large hardware stores also sell systems, but you will find a professionally designed and installed unit well worth the investment; one you will surely recoup if and when you sell your home. You will increase hang space and accessibility, storage and shelf space too.
Prepare for your designer meeting by detailing what types of things you’ll be storing; i.e.: long dresses, socks, folded sweaters, the number of pairs of shoes. Floor based systems are best for stability and durability. Whether its drawers, shelving, crown molding, cabinets and wood finishes that please you, national companies with local manufacturing plants and design centers can best show you the many options. You’ll find most companies provide free designs, estimates and installations for your closets, garage or home office. Be aware that product quality, installation and customer service vary, and be sure to ask about the terms of a warranty for your purchase. Inquirer if the company uses subcontractors, or factory trained/certified cabinetmakers. One last thing, since your needs may change over time, design flexibility is key. You want your organization systems to offer some flexibility to change along with you. A seasoned designer can provide you with a great plan and get you organized. Whether it’s a closet, garage or home office, you’ll be able to breathe easier once you have a place to store “all your stuff.”