Tag Archives: save time

It’s National Clean Out Your Closets Week!

This past Monday marked the official first day of Spring, and for those of you in Washington state (especially the Puget Sound area), some absolutely beautiful weather days followed.

I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to put the parkas and snow boots away and pull out some t-shirts and golf shorts!

For many of us, deciding what to wear is our first big decision of the day.  It sets the tone.  It puts us in a certain frame of mind.  It prepares us for what lies ahead.  Is there a better way to start the day than with a clean, organized closet filled with just those items you love and feel great in?  I think not.

Here are five tips to quickly and painlessly clear some closet clutter:

  1. Schedule time.  If you haven’t done it in a while, an entire closet purge could take several hours.  Schedule at least 3-4 hours to get the process started (hopefully even completed).  Trust me, it’s a great use of time.
  2. Set yourself up for success. Get in the mood for some tough decision-making.  Grab a friend to help.  Turn on some tunes.  Schedule a significant reward for project completion.
  3. Have plenty of supplies ready.
    • If you are planning on changing your hanger style, buy twice as many as you think you need. Same goes for shoe boxes, underbed storage, belt hangers, etc.  It’s always better to have supplies to return than not be able to finish the project because you came up short on supplies.
    • Set up a system for removing what doesn’t deserve valuable closet space: resale, storage, donation, discard, gifting, etc..  Whatever you decided doesn’t deserve a home in your closet, needs to go somewhere.  Immediately put donations in your car. Move storage items to their new home.  Schedule a drop off/pick up date/time for items you are gifting.
  4. Touch everything and ask yourself the following: 
    • Do I love it and feel great when I wear it? (good color, style, fit, etc.)
    • Did I use it this season or can I see myself using it next season? (is skiing really still your thing?)
    • Am I keeping this because of guilt? (impulse purchase, spent too much, it was a gift, etc.)
  5. Put items away efficiently.  Anything that goes back in the closet should be grouped in an organizational system that works best for how you make decisions.
    • Do you select items by color (black vs yellow)?
    • Do you select items by purpose (work vs play)?
    • Do you store outfits together within the closet?

A functional closet can reduce stress (I’m certain most of us have felt the frustration of being late because we “can’t find anything to wear!”); save time (no more time wasted searching for that one black turtleneck you absolutely love!); and save money (how many times have we repurchased items we already own?).

Spring is here . . . are you and your closet ready?

Cindy Jobs




Member Color - WebNational Association of Professional Organizers, Seattle Chapter President
ICD_LogoTag_Horz_72 websiteCertified Premium Subscriber, Institute for Challenging Disorganization

3 Quick Ways to De-Stress the Holidays

Happy HolidaysIt’s hard to believe, but it’s early November and the holidays are right around the corner!  How did that happen?

This time of year I hear a lot of stress-related concerns from my clients.  In large part, they center around not having enough time to “get it all done.”  This gives me the perfect opportunity to have the conversation about what “it all” is and if everything that falls under the “it all” category is bringing joy to the holiday season or just layering on undue stress.

I encourage my clients to check in with themselves, review their priorities, and give themselves the most precious of all gifts . . . time!  Here are some great places to start:

  1. Holiday gatherings.  If you feel more stress than joy about attending a holiday event, maybe the answer to the invitation should be “thank you for inviting us, but we just can’t make it this year.”  You don’t need to go into a long explanation about why, simply responding that you can’t make it is sufficient.
  2. De-stress holiday baking.  It’s amazing to me how much stress people put on themselves when it comes to holiday baking.  Baking is not my passion, but I love having holiday treats to share with neighbors and friends.   Here are two simple and fun ways to take some baking shortcuts.
    1. Coordinate baking efforts.  Have a dessert exchange party where everyone makes several dozen of their favorite recipes and then swap with each other. It’s a super-simple, and super-fun, way to easily get a full assortment of desserts without having to make several different kinds yourself.  (Special Note: It helps to specify that the desserts should freeze well.)
    2. Let the grocery store do some (or all) of the work.  It’s amazing what the neighborhood grocery store has on hand these days!  From ready-made desserts to cookies you can decorate yourself, let the professionals handle the heavy-lifting of baking so you can spend your time doing things you enjoy more.
  3. It’s okay to buy gift cards!  Unless you absolutely, positively know someone’s perfect size, color, or favorite author, a gift card would probably be a welcome gift.  It’s easy to customize the gift by selecting a recipient’s favorite store or Amazon sells gift cards from $.50 – $2,000.  And what can’t you buy on Amazon these days?

The holidays are meant to be joyful and fun . . . for everyone.  I encourage you to take a step back, let go of some of the holiday guilt, and use a few shortcuts to give yourself the gift of time.  You deserve it!