Find Your Floor
Find your floor…it’s an expression we organizers use when the clutter has been cleared, and the floor (or, more generally speaking, the surface) has been “found”. It has been cleared such that the counter, dresser top, desk, floor, etc. has been revealed, in all its glory. Here are some helpful tips on how to find your floor:
You may have pesky horizontal surfaces covered with clutter that you may not even notice anymore. They’ve just become that place that houses the mail piles or the random items. Look around your home with fresh eyes to notice where the clutter accumulates and what surfaces are waiting to be revealed.
2. Clear everything
Clutter is a magnet for other clutter. We see a pile of stuff and think “Well, all this other stuff is already here, I’ll just add to it”. Start by clearing everything off. Then, really comb through it. What types of items end up cluttering your surfaces? See what can be discarded first. Then, proceed to find homes for everything…somewhere besides the surface they were cluttering.
3. Employ systems
An organizational system is simply a habit, tool, or process that is repeated and helps to bring/maintain order and consistency.
Does your desktop need bins to contain paperwork? That would help you find your floor. One that’s labeled “To Do” and one that’s labeled “To File” is a good start.
Another good system is a place to hang backpacks, accompanied by a habit of the kids putting their backpacks there after school. Often, the simpler the system, the better. It helps ensure longevity.
4. Make it easy on yourself
Finding a home for clutter is a great first step. Another recommended step to aid you in the long term adoption of a new habit (putting things away in their new home) is to physically block yourself from clutter accumulation. That countertop that collected random papers? Treat it as an opportunity to find a decor piece or plant to occupy that space instead. Acknowledge the new purpose. “This is a countertop where this tray and vase stays. The papers get thrown away or filed in the office”.
The clothes that end up on the floor? Get a conveniently placed hamper where you’ll put the clothes instead.
Containers are key! Stuffed animals can go in a large basket instead of the floor. They’ll still be accessible, but they’ll be contained, freeing up floor space for play and room to walk. What other categories of items do you have that warrant their own container? Papers, legos, balls, stuffed animals, and tech are common ones.
6. Adopt a Do it Now Mindset
Why put off until tomorrow what you can do today? Will your tomorrow really have more time just waiting to be filled with putting away…yesterday’s…stuff? Is there a really a better time to handle something than the present?
This do it now mindset, combined with the action of following through, can go a long way. Before leaving a room, glance around to see what needs to be relocated. You’re heading out anyway, so might as well grab the empty coffee mug and return it to the kitchen. When you’re heading up the stairs, bring the laundry with you. These things take no extra time, money, or effort, only a do it now mindset. So, do it now…find your floor!