When you just don’t have time to get organised

You’re busy – no doubt about it. We all are. That’s why no one likes the idea of spending precious downtime organising their home.

But here’s why you should change that thinking, writes Peter Walsh.

I’m sure you can agree that having more free time and less stress in your life is a good thing, right? So, let me ask you a couple of quick questions:

  1. Do you ever misplace your keys, wallet, purse, or phone in your house?
  2. Do your kids get out of the house easily when it’s time to go, or is it a constant battle?
  3. Do you routinely end up running back in and out of the house most times when you want to leave because you’ve forgotten something or are just too overwhelmed to remember exactly what you needed to take with you?
  4. Do you find yourself occasionally running late even though you had the best of intentions to not be late?

Taking time to organise your home properly will save you unwanted stress in the long run. Picture: Unsplash

Here’s the deal: Clutter and disorganisation actually rob you of time. They also add huge amounts of frustration and stress to your life (as you already know). When people tell me they don’t have time to get organised, my immediate response is that in this busy and demanding world you can’t afford not to be.

So, if you’d like to be more organised but feel you just don’t have the time to get your home and your life that way, then here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind.

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Give time to what you believe is important

I believe this to be true in so many ways. If you truly felt it was important to be organised, you would be.

Organised people generally believe that being organised helps them in their day-to-day routines. Disorganised people may think that’s true but they don’t fully believe it.

Replace the idea of “I don’t have time” with “this will only take me a couple of minutes”. I promise you’ll be much happier in the end.

Imagine coming home to an organised office like this each day. Picture: Getty

You don’t have to do it all at once

Dedicate just 10 minutes a day – every day! – to getting organised. Set a timer on your phone and concentrate on one room. Do what you can in 10 minutes and be done. Walk away when the time is up.

If you do this repeatedly for a week you’ll be truly amazed at how much you can get done. I’m a big believer in the idea that small steps, consistently applied, yield huge results. Try it and I promise you’ll be surprised.

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Spend a few minutes every night putting things away

This is a natural follow on from the previous tip. Get into the end-of-day habit of carrying some things from your lounge room back to where they belong.

Put the dishes away and carry a few things back to your wardrobe once dry. You don’t have to make this a major job – just keep an eye out for a small bit of organising before the day is done.

You’ll awake to a much more orderly space – and it will make your mood for the day that much happier.

Do the day’s washing up each evening and you’ll thank yourself in the morning. Picture: Caroline McCredie

Get everyone involved

It’s not any single person’s responsibility to keep a home organised (unless of course, you live by yourself!). So spread the load and assign simple tasks to everyone in your home. Even consider setting aside a few minutes before the evening meal where everyone tackles their decluttering or organising task.

Spreading the load not only gets everyone involved but creates a sense that the organisation is a shared responsibility for everyone who uses and enjoys the spaces in your home.

Look, we all have the same amount of time in a day. Prioritise a little bit of organising into every day and you’ll be amazed at how much more stress-free and relaxed that day will be.

Originally published as When you just don’t have time to get organised by Peter Walsh. Author at realestate.com.au.