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There are plenty of benefits to be gained from being organized. It can save you valuable time during the day and will help you save money too, as you will be able to use what you have rather than buying more of what you already own.

So what can you do to become more organized at home?

Try this process to turn your home into a clutter-free space that you’ll want to come home to:

1. Plan ahead. Buy supplies and make a to-do list.

  • Picture each room and figure out if you’ll want to acquire anything to organize that room, such as baskets, bins, or boxes. Get these items ahead of time so that you won’t have to stop and go get them while you’re working on the room.

  • List each room of your house and then prioritize your list. Which room do you most want to get organized? This room will be your first priority. Completing just this one room will make you feel so good that you’ll want to go on and do the rest of the house.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

2. Start with a task that will motivate you to continue. The hardest part of any new project is taking the first step. Many people feel that tackling the hardest job first and getting that out of the way will motivate them, while others choose an easier task to ease into the project.

  • Neither option is right or wrong. Whichever option will get you to make that first step is the best option for you.

3. Avoid taking too much on. It can be tempting to spend the entire weekend cleaning and organizing your household. However, if you don’t finish, you may feel as though you’ve failed, and the effort was for nothing.

  • Instead, focus on smaller tasks that will take at most 3 hours, such as cleaning a cupboard or one room. These smaller tasks will be easier to complete and will motivate you to complete a second task or more.

  • All of these smaller tasks will soon add up to something substantial as you complete more and more of them.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

4. Put on some music and have fun! It has been shown that music can motivate you to get moving. 

  • Organizing your home doesn’t have to be all work and no play! Feel free to dance to your favorite tunes as you sweep or pick up. A broom can easily suffice as a microphone if you want to sing.

5. Designate a specific place for each item that will stay in that room. This is where extra baskets or boxes will come in handy. As you organize each room, put each item in its place.

6. Complete one room before going on to another. This method will also motivate you to keep going. When you finish a room completely, you’ll feel good in the room, and you’ll feel good about yourself! Claim those good feelings and be proud of yourself for what you’ve done!

  • On the other hand, if you leave some items undone when you go on to another room, these unfinished tasks are likely to nag at you, and then the whole project becomes tedious because it may seem like nothing is getting done, in spite of your hard work.

7. Be quick about getting rid of the stuff you don’t want. As you organize, you’ll no doubt come across things that you no longer want or need. If you don’t get rid of them quickly, they will start to be reabsorbed into the household. Throw away, sell, give away, or donate these items right away as you finish each room. You can check out this video where I give some of my tips on decluttering your home in a simple and frustration-free way.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

8. Reward yourself. Once you’ve started organizing, motivate yourself to keep going with small rewards as you complete each room. Rather than buying something material, which can add to the clutter, consider something else that pleases you, like a nice meal or some fresh flowers.

The trick now is to avoid cluttering up your home again!

When you’re done organizing, there will be a place for everything, and everything will be in its place. Keep it that way by putting things back whenever you’re done with them. Take a few minutes each day to tidy up.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

Be thoughtful of what you buy. Before you buy something new, ask yourself whether you need it. Does it even have a purpose? Do you have a place for it? It may be best to wait a day or two before you actually decide if you want it.

It may take some effort to get organized, but it will be well worth it when you start to experience the benefits of a clutter-free home.

Hugs and Love,

As summer shifts into fall, the kids return to school and you settle in for whatever the season brings.

For many of us, this means tasks around the house. Including the children in Home cleaning will provide you with plenty of opportunities for teachable moments.

Whether you plan to clean from floor to ceiling or just do a few little things, you can use some of your fall projects to educate your kids about a variety of topics. You can also use Gets it done cards for motivation or Loyalty cards to reward their dedication to cleaning the home. 

Cleaning Out Drawers

One task that many parents face with disdain is cleaning out drawers. However, you can use this project as a wonderful way to introduce young children to sorting and counting. Learning to group “like” things together is an important aspect of developing math skills.

For older kids, cleaning out drawers helps to sharpen organizational skills as they must decide how to store their clothing in an orderly fashion. Parents might offer suggestions or reinforce the choices their kids make when cleaning out drawers.

Raking Leaves

Teaching kids about how work pays off will put them on the road to work success in the future. One fall project that demonstrates how to have fun and get results from hard work is raking leaves.

Kids of all ages can join in. Parents can assign “jobs” depending on the kids’ ages. You can teach about taking responsibility for their jobs, the importance of cooperation, and the pride of getting the desired results from your work.  

While you’re raking leaves, feel free to educate your children about what happens to plants and animals when the weather starts cooling down. Ask questions about what they’ve studied in school that may relate to what you’re doing or to the changes that occur during fall.

Rearranging Furniture

Including your children in this Home project will provide plenty of teachable moments. 

Have a simple measuring tool, such as a sewing tape measure, that can be easily manipulated by little fingers. Assign jobs of measuring furniture width, height, and depth to the kids. These jobs pertain to all types of subjects: Math, Algebra, and maybe even Geometry. 

Encourage your children to visualize how the room will look with certain furniture placed in various ways. If it’s their own room, ask them what arrangement they’d like most. Then, discuss how and whether their plans will work. 

If you like, you can even have the kids sketch out their floor plans on graph paper as a simple introduction to design and engineering. Of course, you’ll want to show the kids about cleaning before you place furniture in its new space. 

Cleaning the Garage

In cleaning the garage, as in any task around the house, you can talk about a positive quality that your child has and reinforce their efforts. 

Also, encouraging your kids to think of “green” ways to re-use or recycle items you no longer want provides a fantastic way for them to learn about reducing your family’s carbon footprint. 

Discuss local charities and swap meets where you can take items you don’t want. You’re educating your children about those charities and why they’re necessary. Also, you’re teaching about the social agencies your community has to offer.  

Including your kids in your seasonal tasks may take a little more time and effort on your part. However, they’ll grow up loving to learn if you infuse education into working around the house. Increase your children’s chances for success by using fall home projects to provide teachable moments.

Hugs and Love,

If you’re like most of us, at some point you’re likely to come to the conclusion that your life is too cluttered. You have too much to do and aren’t able to handle your schedule. You probably own too much stuff and just keep adding more every day.

Most people would probably be better off with at least a little decluttering. But how do you go about it? When you’re under a pile of clutter, commitments, personal files, and a load of digital information, how do you even get started with decluttering?

Follow these tips for decluttering your life:

1. Simply get started. Pick a room, a closet, or a shelf, and get started. Pick up each item once and ask yourself, “Do I use this regularly? Do I love this item?” If the answer to both questions is “no” then the item needs to be sold, donated, or given away. Have a box for each of those categories to put your discarded items in.  In my book, Beautifully organized I share a great decluttering tool to help with the purging process. 

Photo by: Abby Murphy Photography

  • Put away the items that you’re keeping in their proper place.

  • If you have a lot of stuff, it might seem overwhelming. Try setting a timer and just work for 10 minutes. Limit your decluttering to one small area for those 10 minutes. That way, you’ll really be able to see some progress.

  • Try not to get carried away by spending too much time. Working on decluttering for 10 minutes a day for a month is a lot better than overloading yourself and quitting after 2 days.

You can also watch my video for tips on how I declutter my home to help you organize your space.

2. Go a little further each day. Once you’ve gotten started with your decluttering, keep moving forward. Finish one area and then move on to the next. Your enemy is perfection. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Simply do a good job in a reasonable amount of time. Any work you’re putting into this will result in progress. Make it easy on yourself.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

  • Get some help. Some of us really are pack rats and can’t seem to let go of anything. If that sounds like you, get a reasonable friend to help. The ideal friend will have a clutter-free home that you envy.

  • Take the time to enjoy the new clutter-free spaces you’ve created in order to help keep the momentum going.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

3. Declutter your calendar and digital life. Your living environment is only one aspect of your life. Simplifying how you spend your time and handle your digital life is important, too.

  • Decluttering your calendar is about learning to say “no” to commitments that aren’t important to you. Make a list of commitments and put them in order from most important to least important. Keep the top few and remove the rest from your life.
  • Start decluttering your digital life. Prioritize the blogs, newsletters, social networks, emails, and so on. Only keep the things that really matter. Use a planner to keep you on track with your most meaningful tasks.

4. It’s important to include others in your home. If the other people in your home aren’t on the same page, decluttering is much more challenging.

  • Focus on telling them about the benefits they’ll receive if the home is much less cluttered. Share the benefits of decluttering their space.

  • If there’s too much resistance, keep your focus on decluttering and maintaining your own space. 

  • Getting rid of things can be contagious. You’ll likely find that everyone else in your household will jump on the bandwagon when they see how great your personal space looks.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

Decluttering your life is more beneficial than you probably realize. It’s not only easier to find things, but you’ll have adequate space to put everything away in its proper place. Clutter weighs on your mind 24/7, whether you realize it or not. Avoid letting it stress you out or take over your life.

If you feel like you need a little more help from a professional organizer, you can schedule a virtual home organizing session with me here. I will gladly help you with your decluttering process.

You’ll be surprised at how much more relaxed you feel when the clutter is out of your life for good. Give it a try today!

Hugs and Love, Nikki.

Organizing your home will bring you different benefits than it might for someone else with the same goals, but with completely different outcomes.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

First off, you need to know, to organize your home is different for you than it is for someone else. Some people don’t have a lot of clutter and junk but need to know how to maintain organization and have a place for their stuff.

On the other hand, some homes have piles upon piles… a big mess, and still think it’s just a matter of needing storage.

When, in fact, storage is the last thing you need. The first step is getting rid of clutter, rather than adding more storage just to keep more stuff.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

The thing is, once you start organizing your home, you’ll see how great and real the benefits are:

  • It’s reducing stress by having order and discipline.
  • It’s having more space by keeping clutter out for good.
  • It’s simplifying the way you live at home by creating useful systems that work for you personally.
  • It’s a way of being on time, and not feeling the strain of running against the clock.

Personally, I like to start any organization by writing the things that I need to do. Having a checklist will make you see the task as a whole but in a less overwhelming manner. Breaking the task makes things easier than how it actually looks. Feel free to download the Organization Checklist that I created to help you start your organization.

Quite simply, when you finally start to make the simple changes of organization, it all adds up to give you more room to breathe so you can enjoy your family and friends more.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

Being organized isn’t a matter of being rich or poor, young or old. We were never taught organization in school and, in fact, we’re taught to multi-task and go in too many directions at once.

Being organized makes life easier.  It’s not going to make you rich (well it may, depending on the amount of clutter you have) but it will certainly save you money by avoiding duplicate purchases and late bills.

It’s not going to make you any younger, but it will certainly give you more time to do things you might think you don’t have time to do.

Being organized isn’t going to give you a bigger house, but it will clear clutter and open up some space so you’ll feel like you have a bigger house because there will be less congestion and “stuff” all over the place.

Photo by: Abby Murphy Photography

There may seem like there is a lot to getting organized but with a little dedication, time, and consistency you will add so much value to your home. 

If you feel like you need help with being organized, you can schedule a virtual home organizing session with me here. I would love to work with you to start the process of decluttering your home. Let’s get started! 

Hugs and Love, Nikki.

We all have excuses for doing some of the negative things we do. Holding onto clutter is common, and having excuses as to why we keep all the “stuff” is par for the course.

Do you know what the real problem is with getting organized?

We have too much stuff! 

I’m willing to bet you have some things you (or someone you live with) keep without having a good enough reason.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

So why DO we keep so much stuff?

The thing is, it’s easier to find excuses for why you should keep something and delay making a decision rather than making a firm (and sometimes difficult) choice to say goodbye to your “stuff.”

Here are four of my favorite excuses…

1. “I might need it someday.”

Yes, you might. But the thing is most of the items we keep can easily be found or replaced within a day or two. Lots of men (my dad included) keep every screw and nail created and store it away like a squirrel with his nuts.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

But what happens is these little tiny items create more and more clutter, and it gets to a point where you can’t find that little screw anyway because it’s like finding a needle in a haystack.

2. “I’m going to lose some weight and start wearing this again.”

I hope if you have a goal to lose some weight, you do everything in your power to make it happen. And when you do, I give you permission to go out and find a sale and buy some brand new clothes. You should be proud and it’s the perfect time to reward yourself.

3. “So-and-So Gave Me This.”

I’m all for keeping memories and items that remind us of people we love. But the truth is, memories are not in the clutter, the knick-knacks, and “stuff” you have shoved in a box.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

I won’t say get rid of everything, and it’s not always an easy decision, but try and only keep the special things you cherish. Get them out in the open, on display – where you can enjoy them and have a story to tell when someone comments or asks a question about the item.

Remember: Don’t feel obligated to keep every single thing that everyone gives you in your home. Don’t hold on to things out of obligation. I have mentioned this in one of my videos where I discussed Creative Tips To Declutter Your Home.

4. I paid good money for this… “thing!”

I’m sure you did. But the thing is, what has more value…this “item” you no longer have any use for or the way you enjoy your house? The item… or your happiness? The item… or your space?

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

5. Oh, I’m just trying to figure out what to do with it…

Okay, so maybe it’s not worth holding onto.

See, if it takes that much mental work to figure out what to do with something, you can take a pretty good guess that it may not be worth as much to you as you think. 

If you can’t figure out what to do with something… it’s a safe bet you won’t miss it too much. One thing that can help you decide is by referring to the Decluttering Guide that is on page 28 of my book Beautifully Organized. This book will help you assess your home to transform your space based on your lifestyle.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography

There is a lot more value in enjoying your home, your friends, and your family than the “stuff” you paid for.

Let’s breakdown your clutter together.  Click here to get started. 

Hugs and Love, Nikki.

Whether you are saving for a house deposit, or perhaps something a little smaller, there are things that you can do at home to save money.

Photo by: Abby Murphy Photography

Try these tips and watch your savings grow:

1. Make a shopping list. How many times have you gone to the grocery store and ended up buying things you think you wanted rather than the things you actually needed?

  • If you use a magnetic whiteboard and put it on your fridge, you can keep it updated with the items you actually need. Only stick to these items and avoid buying anything you don’t currently need.

2. Eat more fresh produce. You may think that buying fresh food is expensive, but this is not the case.

Photo by: Katie Charlotte Photography
  • Invest in a meal plan.  I currently have a meal plan club in which you pay only $5 per month for a monthly meal plan for the entire month.  No more wasting money eating out or shopping daily at the grocery store, which can be costly. Click here to join our meal plan club today!

3. Stick to drinking water. Rather than opting for a soda, tea, or other beverage, choose water. It’s healthier and more affordable.

  • Avoid bottled water too. Buying a water filter and using filtered tap water can save money.

4. Limit habits that cost money. For example, if you smoke or need to have an alcoholic drink each night, consider stopping or cutting back a bit. Not only will it save you some money, but your health will improve too.

5. Borrow what you don’t often need. Instead of buying the latest appliance that you’ll only use once before putting it in the cupboard forever, ask a friend or a neighbor if you could borrow theirs.

6. Buy store brand goods. You can save lots of money off your grocery bill when you buy store brand or generic goods such as cereal and medication.

Photo by: Christopher Shane Photography

7. Use a cold wash for laundry. Most of your clothes will be completely fine when washed at a low temperature. Heating the water is what costs the most money.

8. Unplug appliances you aren’t using. Rather than waste money on electronics and appliances that are not being used, unplug them. Whenever they’re plugged in, they use electricity, even when they’re turned off.

9. Avoid buying scented candles. We all love to have a nice smelling home, but you don’t need to buy expensive scented candles to achieve it. Use baking soda to remove odor from carpets and fabrics, while a small pot of cinnamon or vanilla left to simmer on your stove can make your house more appealing to any visitors.

10. Learn basic home maintenance. You will occasionally have to bring in a professional to do certain jobs. However, if you learn how to do basic home maintenance and repairs, you can save money by doing easy repairs yourself.  YouTube is a great resource to learn basic home maintenance tips. I have videos where I share with you some of the organization tips that have worked for me over the years.

11. Learn to sew. Instead of throwing away clothing or other fabric household items, you can often repair them with a few simple stitches, saving you from having to buy new items.

Photo by: Abby Murphy Photography

12. Barter with friends and family. If you need some work done around your home, and a friend or family member knows how to do it, perhaps you could consider asking them for an exchange of skills. You could do something for them in return.

You don’t need to make massive changes in your life to save money. Making a few of these changes can make a huge difference in the amount of money you can save. I personally believe in the power of proper planning using tools such as Monthly Budget Planner which you can use to get visuals on your finances.

When you use cost-saving measures such as these, remember to add the money you’ve saved to your savings account.
A few small changes can add up to a lot over time!

Hugs and Love, Nikki.


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