Whether you’re a corporate career woman, an entrepreneur or a stay-at-home mom, getting organized will dramatically reduce stress and improve your quality of life. The same principles used to declutter and organize our physical space can be equally effective when applied to calendars and finances. Here are some tips for making your busy life more manageable:


Get intentional about transforming the areas that bother you and be honest about your situation. Find an accountability partner to help make this process fun; it may just be the encouragement she needs to address her own organizational issues. Helpful questions: Where am I disorganized in my life? What resources will I need to get organized? (A babysitter? A friend? An expert?) What is my timeline for completion?


Think about the values you want to live by and how you envision your best life. Be as specific as possible. Examples of helpful questions: What style is my ideal home? How often would I like to entertain? What financial goals do I want to work toward?


With your ideal lifestyle as a compass, sort through items in your home, calendar and finances. Consider how each item makes you feel. In the discarding process, the focus is not on the quantity of what you get rid of, but rather on the quality of what you keep. The main question: Does this item bring me joy and support the vision I have for my ideal life? If the answer is no, it’s time to let go.


To be most efficient, gather items into single categories to see what you have, then thoughtfully discard what no longer serves you. In the home, the following order is very effective: clothing, books, papers, all other items (subcategorized as needed: dishes, linens, etc.) and finally, sentimental items. Your calendar can be broken down into personal, family and career activities. Categorize expenses into needs, wants, monthly expenses, annual expenses, etc. Helpful questions: What category does this item belong in? Have I gathered/listed everything in this category?


After decluttering, it’s time to set up systems for managing what remains. Many resources are available, so your goal is to find systems that work for you. Search the internet for loads of ideas for storing items in your home. Tech lovers have many apps to choose from for managing schedules and finances. Those who enjoy flipping pages can opt for a paper planner or budget notebook. Whatever you choose, the question is: “Will using this system encourage me to stay organized?”

Remember: The time you spend getting organized is an investment in your well-being. You are worth it!

Heather Young, of Tidy and Calm LLC, is a certified KonMari® consultant. She and her team use the KonMari® Method to transform home organizing into a once-in-a-lifetime joyful event. Reach her at www.tidyandcalm.com.