You can tell you've reached adult status when organization becomes interesting. Particularly, organization hacks that make life less stressful. Where you once spent the nights in front of Netflix, you now spend them perusing Pinterest for ideas. And suddenly you get a really big kick out of DIY shows. (Like, they've become your new hobby.) It can be pretty shocking, to say the least.
This turnaround recently happened to me. I went from a hapless, messy 20-something, to someone who suddenly believes laundry organization is important. My habits haven't caught up with my interest quite yet, but I gotta say — I love the idea of a shoe rack.
Has this happened yet for you? If so, here's what I believe causes the shift. I think it happens because first of all, we're adults now, and that means we need to clean up our lives. And second of all, we suddenly have a million things to juggle, and disorganization just won't do. Messiness is cute when you're in college, but eventually it's necessary to put away your clothes, and start growing up.
Stress is a big part of it, too. I used to be oblivious to piles of laundry, but now it kind of raises my blood pressure. Not to mention, messiness tends to make me late for all my important, adult appointments. And that's just no way to live.
So whether you've become obsessed with organization yet or not, here are some easy hacks so you can clean up your life, and be way less stressed.
1. Organize Your Makeup
When you're in a rush, nothing is more annoying than struggling with makeup as it falls over and rolls away. I've even gone so far as to knock my makeup off a shelf and straight into the toilet. (Sad times.) So that's why makeup organizers are where it's at to prevent such stressful scenarios. Simply place one on your bathroom counter (or shelf, as I should have done), and all your lipsticks, tools, and foundations will stay perfectly upright and ready for use.
2. Keep Earrings In Ice Cube Trays
If you're missing half your earrings, and all their little backings, then this hack is for you. All you need, according to Emily Co on PopSugar.com, is an ice cube tray to keep your earrings all in one spot. How genius is that?
3. Be All About The Planner
Toting around a well-organized planner — one that's not on your phone— will help keep your crazy schedule in check. That's because writing things down, versus plugging them into your phone, makes remembering much easier. In fact, as Dustin Wax noted on Lifehacker.com, "Writing seems to act as a kind of mini-rehearsal for doing." So grab yourself a cute planner, and stop forgetting all those important appointments. It's a win win.
4. Store Your Clothes The Right Way
If your drawers are packed to bursting with unfolded shirts, socks, and underwear, then do yourself a favor and get to folding. Your drawers should look like this, as suggested by Lauren Smith on GoodHousekeeping.com, so that you can actually see everything you own. It'll make getting ready so much easier.
5. Keep Your Mail In One Spot
For the least amount of stress, you should definitely consider going paperless to avoid crazy piles of mail. But if you still get physical bills and statements, then be sure to keep them organized. As Alex Givens suggested on Real Simple, have a designated mail station, complete with stamps and envelopes. This area will serve as your "inbox" for new mail, and it can also be the place where you file away bills that have yet to be paid. But most important of all? Make sure this station is right next to a trash can, so you can ditch old papers as soon as possible.
6. Sort Dirty Clothes
If you're like me, then you have a big, unwieldy pile of dirty clothes chilling on the floor of your bedroom. Not only is it super ugly and stressful to look at, but the dirties inevitably get mixed up with my clean clothes. Cue me going to work in a smelly shirt, or dirty jeans. (Oops.) Avoid this, and make laundry day way simpler, by getting a hamper that divides darks and lights. And just like that, you'll have way less stress.
7. Hang Up Your Shoes
Sadly, tossing shoes into your closet doesn't make for the easiest time when it comes to getting ready. You find one heel, but not the other. And some shoes are so buried under the pile, you forget they exist at all. That's why organizing them is key to actually enjoying your shoe collection. I think the best way to fix the mess (for heeled shoes, anyway) is to hang a tension rod in your closet, as suggested by ApartmentTherapy.com, and then everything will be on full display.
8. Keep Your Keys Organized
One of the most stressful parts of the day is the five minutes before you leave for work. In those minutes, you have to find your keys, find your wallet, find your sunglasses, find your phone — it's overwhelming, to say the least. So create an area by the front door that can hold all these essentials. Place a bowl there for your wallet, and hang your keys on drawer pulls as Jessica Brinkert Holtam said on BHG.com. That way everything will be ready and waiting to go.
9. Make A Framed Jewelry Holder
If you have a few minutes, this DIY jewelry holder is a total worthy investment. Simply pick up a frame, string it with some cloth or mesh, attach a few hooks and voila — instant jewelry holder. As Co said, this is a great way to hang earrings and necklaces, and it keeps them from tangling. Plus, it serves as super pretty decor.
10. Store Tools In An Eyeglass Case
Think about all the little bits and bobs you have floating around — tweezers, nail clippers, etc. — and how often these things get lost. Put this aggravation behind you by storing them all in an eyeglass case, as suggested by Alexi Velasquez on RedbookMag.com. Not only are eyeglass cases sturdy and cute, but they can be easily tossed in your bag when it's time to travel.
11. Keep Kitchen Stuff At The Ready
I don't know about you, but my apartment is tiny. So tiny, in fact, that my kitchen doesn't even have counters, much less drawers to put things in. It's quite the bummer when it comes to storing things like cling wrap and aluminum foil. That's why I love the idea of using magazine holders. As Co said, this is the perfect solution for storing such things upright, and in one spot. Simply tuck them into your cabinets, or on a shelf, and your kitchen will feel instantly more organized.
12. Wrangle Up Your Cords
If your plethora of laptop and phone cables is driving you crazy, then it may be time to get them out of your way, once and for all. As Emily Weem said on Brit.co, all you need are some binder clips, and the edge of a table. Simply clamp the clips onto the table, and feed the cords through the metal handle. And just like that, all those wires will be up and out of your way.
13. Store Cleaning Supplies One Spot
Cleaning sucks enough as it is, so don't make it harder by not having the stuff you need on hand. All you have to do is toss all your sponges and sprays in a bucket, and then it's ready to go.
14. Keep Your Car Clean
Don't just toss your burger wrapper on the backseat (where you know you'll never see it again.) Instead, stash it in a plastic cereal container that's lined with a garbage bag. It'll keep all your wrappers and whatnot from rolling around your car floor, and make it way easier to toss the junk on a regular basis.
15. Get Your Gear Sorted
Flashlights, cords, tools and other garage-y types things are never around when you need them. That's why this wine rack storage hack, as suggested by Erin Henry said on Real Simple, is an awesome solution for keeping such things handy. The next time the lights go out, or you need a hammer, you'll know exactly where to go.
Life is always going to be stressful, but it can be way less so if you organize your life with these easy hacks.
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