Monday, January 4, 2016

12 Quick Things You Can Do to Start the Year Organized // New Year State of Mind

Hi everyone! Happy 2016!

I hope that you all had a lovely NYE, KC and I had a really nice anniversary together. :)

I've noticed a lot of New Year negativity online this year, so if that's you, feel free not to read! I'm really into it, so I've got a lot of New Year posts planned!

It's the first full week of January 2016! I've been thinking a lot about goals (I'm still working on them!), but I've come up with a lot of mini tasks and projects that are going to make my year a little easier from the get-go. Interested? Read on.

Start the first full week of the new year off right. These 12 easy tasks can help you feel more organized and less cluttered right away. Do 2 per day, or more on a weekend, I guarantee you'll feel lighter. 

These brushes get used daily. They get GROSS y'all. They carry bacteria, they can disrupt the colors you are using at the time. Just give them a quick clean. I love Ursula's tutorial for a natural makeup brush cleaner. In a pinch? Rub them against a baby wipe!

Extra Credit: Take inventory of your products, anything you need to order soon? Toss anything that's REALLY old. There are dates for these things... follow them if you'd like. But I don't use my makeup quickly enough to do that!!

One of my goals for the year will be related to cooking at home more. Whether you cook a lot or not, it's easy to forget about your fridge. Take 10 minutes to toss out old condiments, dispose of moldy leftovers, and take note of what you have in your fridge. Make a list of things you need to re-stock or add. Repeat with your freezer and pantry.

Extra Credit: Wash those shelves and drawers. Even check out the spices etc.

I don't know about you guys, but being a #fulltimefulltime (full time 9-5, full time business of my own) I carry a TON of stuff around every day. By mid-week the bags start to get CRAZY. Take 5-10 minutes to dump them out, toss the trash, recycle anything you can, take stock of what you need to add, and anything you've forgotten about (hello, letter or bill you meant to mail. I'm also looking at you overdue library book....). Make your piles, reduce what you're carrying, restock what needs restocked, and feel so much better. :)

Extra Credit: Make a mini emergency pouch. Get a small zipper pocket and fill it with pain relievers, chapstick, bandaids, hair ties, nail clippers, etc. It doesn't have to be very big, but having that stuff handy can be great. No mid-day runs to CVS for you!

Every. Three. Months. I know that we don't all do this enough, so start the year off with a brand spankin' new toothbrush. Easy peasy.

Extra Credit: Check your other supplies... floss, toothpaste, etc. Restock. If you feel like getting really crazy... take stock of shampoos, soaps, lotions, and other bathroom essentials. Add them to your list!

I don't know about you guys, but KC & I's car gets messy QUICK! And it's small, so we run out of space quickly too. Take 20-30 minutes to clean out your glove compartments, any door bins, under seats etc. Get all of the trash and recycling out of there! Make sure your proof of insurance is in the glove box with all of your other necessary paperwork. Pens, coins, etc. should be restocked as needed. Donate the miscellaneous donation items, bring in any clothing, etc. This will make you feel so much better!

Extra Credit: Take it to a carwash and use the quarter vacuums to vacuum the floors, mats, seats, etc. So. Clean. In the winter... you may or may not actually want to get your car washed. Lucky you if you have a garage/shop vac! #adulting

When was the last time you cleaned out your underwear drawer? Seriously? If it has holes, bad elastic, stains, doesn't fit well, isn't comfortable.... GET IT OUT OF YOUR LIFE! Unless it is a pair not meant to be functional, *wink* it should be comfortable to wear, and decent in appearance. You do not have to wear granny panties if you don't want to either! I am a big believer in comfy + cute. Hanky Panky anyone? (seriously, I would die if I could just wear these every day. $$$$$$). Make replacements as needed. You are worth it. Undie PSA over.

Extra Credit: Bras y'all. Bras. (go get fitted, wear the right size. it will change your life). Bra PSA also over.

Library fines? Pay them. Parking ticket? Pay that too. Late bills or payments? Make those suckers ASAP. One less thing to worry about or remember later on.

Extra Credit: If you can swing it, pay a little extra somewhere this month. Pay double your student loan payment, debt payment etc. Starting with a leg up can be a good thing. Again, only if that is something you can do right now!

Go through those paper piles. You know the ones I mean. Junk mail, mixed with real mail, mixed with chaos. Get those, sort them, recycle/shred that stuff! Junk mail is obnoxious and it creates 10 BILLION pounds of solid waste every. year. That's ridiculous. For free, you can sign up to stop receiving junk mail, here. Totally Brill. Write "return to sender, change of address" on mail that is not yours, junk or not. Put it back in the mail box. Recycle old catalogs, magazines, etc. while you are at it! And please do consider recycling. It really does make a difference.

Extra Credit: No one likes a full inbox. Go through and delete old emails, delete them in chunks by business / email address to get rid of a lot at once. Do this for work, for personal etc. Even go through your folders in your inbox and get rid of the old stuff. A clean inbox is a happy inbox. Unsubscribe from email lists you no longer use! There's no need to have a cluttered inbox!!

Return those duplicate or off-base holiday returns. Many retailers will exchange without a receipt for store credit. Major retailers like Target and Walmart make it especially easy. Take the bag of things you meant to return or exchange and actually do it! Put it in your (newly cleaned?) car so you will remember!

Extra Credit: Take your excess plastic grocery bags while you're at it! Stores like Target and Walmart have bins near the entrances or customer service to collect and recycle plastic shopping bags! You can also take batteries, old cell phones, etc. to these places often. Best buy has even more recycling services. :)

I try my hardest not to throw things away. I recycle what I can, buy used when it's a good option, and I make sure to pass along or donate my old clothes and home items. However, I usually end up with little piles and boxes across the house that need donated. Take 10 minutes to gather it up and put it in the car. Take it to Goodwill, The Salvation Army, etc. Those yellow clothing donation bins are also great! Getting those little things out of the house can totally help you feel less cluttered and more organized.

Extra Credit: Do a sweep through each room of your house. Pick up anything that isn't useful or beautiful in your life, and add it to the donation pile before donating. I bet you'll find at least one thing in each room. Another good place to look is the bookshelf. I resolved in college to only hang onto the books that I LOVED. Since then I have been hoarding books and not reading a ton of them...  but when I do read one, and it's just OK, I sell it to a bookstore or donate it when I am done. Do you need to hang onto a book you didn't even like? Samies for DVDs/Blurays.

Odd socks are a fact of life. If your pile is like ours it grows throughout the year and is never empty. Take the time now, to sort through them again. Match what you can, toss what is wasted (or reuse it as a cloth for dusting, furniture polishing, or surface cleaning), and give the missing ones one more chance. If the mates don't turn up during your next day of laundry. Reuse or toss them! Anything else lying around? Almost empty detergent bottles? Use them up next load and recycle the container. Broken clothespins? Get rid of them! Take stock of what you have and what you need to replace!

Extra Credit: Vow to lessen your budget and get rid of another container in your laundry room by making re-usable dryer balls. They still eliminate static, and can fragrance your clothing if you add drops of oils, AND they lessen drying time. It's better for your bills, the earth, your clothing's lifespan, and they take up less space. I followed this tutorial, and we haven't bought dryer sheets in 6 months! Let's not even get into the nasty chemicals inside of the dryer sheets... :  /

We recently pulled all of the junk off the front of our fridge. So. Transformative. I took down all of the papers, clips, magnets, coupons etc. I washed the fridge, I donated old magnets, I put up some sticky dry erase boards, and now we are menu, grocery, and calendar planning on our fridge. I put up the magnets I was keeping in a much more orderly way. Now it looks SO much cleaner!! Plus, it's keeping me organized. Another great place to do this is bulletin boards, or by the front door catch all areas. Re-think what is there, and get rid of the excess. You'll feel so much better.

Extra Credit: Use the front of your fridge to "publicly" track other goals as well. Tracking your workouts, weight, budgeting, etc? Put it up on the fridge and you and your hubby, roomie, etc. can keep each other accountable and work together to achieve those goals. :)

What little things are you doing to start the new year out more organized? 

Anyone tried any of these lately? What are your tips?

I would love to hear what y'all are planning for 2016!



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