Sunday, August 1, 2010

Keep like things together

If you were to look in some of my drawers at home, you might be surprised. For the most part, they are not pristinely organized with dividers and labels.

I tried that before in my sock drawer, purchasing those long plastic containers that are supposed to help you keep things neatly arranged, but I never ended up having the time or inclination to maintain that level of order. It's much easier and quicker to just open the drawer and throw in the folded socks. :)

Instead, I've adopted one simple principle: Keep like things together. We have a pen/pencil drawer in our desk, and while the contents may not be organized by "pencil," "red pens," "blue pens," and so forth, we know that the only items that go in that drawer are pens and pencils. They don't belong in any other drawers in the house, and no other items belong in the pen/pencil drawer.

Now, some things do need a little extra help in the drawer, like utensils. It'll just be quicker for you at dinnertime if you can easily reach in and pull out the forks and knives you need. So, it's just a matter of thinking about which things need an additional level of organizing and which things would be overkill to divide further. (Not to worry: we'll delve into this in future posts!)

It may seem elementary but if you apply this principle across your home--books stay with books, socks with socks, take-out menus with take-out menus, tools with tools, spices with spices--and stick with it, you'll find yourself well-organized in a very manageable way.

Other examples from our home: mail, umbrellas, utensils:

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