Organizing is easy in theory.

You’ve read the books, you’ve got the plan down, but it still overwhelms you to think about getting started. There’s just so much stuff!

Don’t worry. Thinking like that is just one of the many mistakes you can make when trying to organize your home. So let’s start from the beginning.

These are the most common mistakes people make when organizing:

Mistake #1: They rearrange instead of organize

Rearranging things around doesn't mean organizing.
Rearranging things around doesn't mean organizing. Source: Align Organizing

Moving stuff around is not necessarily organizing.

Your main goal for organization should be to have the things you need and use the most in the right places, and the things you don’t need OUT. Ergo, simply taking an entire mess and storing it inside containers doesn’t count as organizing: you’re just redistributing the mess.

Start by de-cluttering. Take everything you don’t need out of the way forever, and only then organize what’s left.

Mistake #2: They use too many containers

Using too many containers is a common mistake.
Using too many containers is a common mistake. Source: Storage Talk

Oh, the illusion of organization.

Having lots of containers is not a bad thing - they are incredibly useful tools for organizing your stuff. However, don’t think just because you bought a bunch of new boxes and pretty containers your mess will automatically disappear.

You only need the RIGHT containers. First get rid of the excess stuff and then decide which containers you need before you buy them. It saves your money and your sanity.

Mistake #3: They don’t keep it real

Don't get unrealistic expectations when organizing.
Don't get unrealistic expectations when organizing. Source: iHeart Organizing

Trying to achieve that perfectly clean and organized Pinterest-worthy look for your home at all times is like trying to look like people in the movies:

It’s impossible.

People in movies wake up in full makeup and never have bad breath. Which is fine because they’re in a movie.

The truth is that those beautiful Instagram pictures of organized homes are just that - pictures.

They represent a single frame of that home’s existence, and at all other times before and after that picture was taken, someone was struggling just as you may be right now.

Or do you think people just look at their homes like:

“Gosh, my home is so perfectly organized. I’m gonna take a picture!”

It’s actually more like:

“Gosh, I need to clean this mess if I’m ever gonna take a picture.”

And about one hour after the picture was taken and shared, it’s like:

“Gosh, everything is messy again. Oh well, picture’s done. No one will know.”

Well, now you do.

Mistake #4: They hide clutter instead of clearing it

Hiding clutter doesn't count as organizing as well!
Hiding clutter doesn't count as organizing as well! Source: Today

This is similar to the first mistake. It’s the same as how moving stuff around doesn’t count as organizing, simply taking all your clutter and stuffing it inside drawers and under the bed is even worse.

Hiding clutter is the kind of thing that will come back to haunt you.

Get back all that stuff you kicked under the bed and ask yourself:

  • Am I keeping this “just in case”?
  • Have I used or needed this in the past 2-3 months?
  • Am I keeping this just because I spent money on it?
  • Am I keeping this just because I find it pretty?

If you said “yes” to any of those…you should consider getting rid of whatever it is. Forever.

By the way, if you’re keeping something out of sentimental value, that’s fine - just make sure it has a place to stay and it doesn’t get in your way.

Mistake #5: They copy what everyone else does

Don't assume every other organization tip fits your home.
Don't assume every other organization tip fits your home. Source: Flicker

Don’t listen to everything people tell you about organization.

A little ironic, yes, but bare with us.

Obviously, there are tons of good tips you can follow that are actually helpful, but don’t just assume everything will fit into your situation. For example, let’s talk about the junk drawer:

Some people will tell you having a junk drawer is terrible for organization. It can lead to you throwing too much random stuff there and losing track of where things should be.

However… other people will tell you having a junk drawer is healthy. It’s a practical solution for everyday items you don’t really need all the time and have no better place to be.

Which is right?

That’s up to you.

Speaking of which, some of the best organization tips you’ll find come from the KonMari Method.

Mistake #6: They think organizing is a one-time thing

Organizing is a constant hustle.
Organizing is a constant hustle. Source: Youtube

Your home is like a living organism. It’s always shifting and changing around your daily habits and you can be SURE it will never ever stay the exact same from one day to the other.

Organizing is a hustle.

You can get every single thing in your home in the right place, but as soon as you need them back, the process of organization begins again.

Will you put it back, or leave it elsewhere? Regardless of your decision there, the organization process continues.

But that’s not a bad thing. Organization is always meant to be a good hustle. A constant tiny battle inside your home that you should definitely learn to enjoy!

Mistake #7: They never start

Just start organizing already!
Just start organizing already! Source: Lifehack

Here’s the thing: waiting for your next chunk of free time to start organizing is a lie and you know it.

Priorities always take over and before you realize it, weeks, even months will pass before you make the decision to finally start.

You don’t need free time, you need to start.

But like we said before: organization is not a one-time thing. Doing it once will definitely keep your home clean… for about five minutes. As soon as anything moves, you’re back in the game.

The trick is making organization a part of your life. If things are too messy and out of control, then sure, take a weekend off to get everything back on track - but don’t stop there! From that point onwards, take what you’ve learned and make it a part of your routine. It’s healthier and a lot more satisfying than having to purge your home of clutter every three months!

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Keep on reading:

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