8 Simple Ways to Look Organized (Even When You're Not)

Whether it's a New Year's resolution, spring cleaning, or a desperate need to get it together, getting organized sounds fun at first. We are all guilty of spending an inordinate amount of time on one task, like clearing out that junk drawer in the kitchen, and then not organizing anything else. Getting organized takes time and effort some of us would rather spend relaxing after work or on the weekends. We know it feels good to be organized, but sometimes we need a push to get started. Here are 8 ways to start organizing your life.

1. Make your bed

A tidy bed makes the rest of the room look cleaner. Consider investing in a matching set of sheets and pillowcases. White sheets automatically look crisp and clean, and you can toss the whole bunch into the wash without worrying about colors bleeding. Make the effort to make your bed every morning and you'll be amazed at how quickly the rest of the room tidies up too.

2. Buy a silverware organizer

Stop rummaging for a knife or fork and coming up with a spoon. You can get inexpensive, plastic silverware organizers from IKEA or the dollar store. Keep silverware in the organizer and put things like spatulas in an up-cycled glass jar on the counter. Little things like this make a big difference in keeping your space tidy.

3. Keep a calendar on your fridge

You need a place to write down doctors appointments, meetings, presentations, and coffee dates. Yes, keeping them in your phone or Google calendar is great, but you look at your fridge every morning. Remind yourself of what you've got going on while getting out milk for your morning coffee. You can get a hanging paper monthly calendar at an office supply store or try a whiteboard and markers. You can also use the extra space on the calendar to keep a running list of groceries and toiletries or a to do list.

4. Keep your coffee table clear of mess

A messy coffee table in the middle of a room makes the whole space look chaotic. Eliminate this by clearing off the surface and only keeping a few things on top: A scented candle, a magazine or book, a set of coasters, or a vase with flowers. Once you clean off the table, you'll see how much more open and tidy the rest of the room will appear.

5. Put dividers in your sock drawer

Typically we use the top drawer in our dresser for socks and underwear. And usually this is the messiest drawer in the dresser. Solution? Get some simple dividers to separate the two. You can find dividers in stores or online, or make some by measuring recycled cardboard to fit the drawer. Take it a step further by splitting socks into categories of dress socks, workout socks, and regular everyday socks.

6. Keep extra bin liners at the bottom of the trash can

No more searching under the sink for the next liner. This takes up less space than you'd think, and you can immediately put in a new liner when taking out the trash. Keep the whole roll of liners or fold up a few for the bottom.

7. Only keep the pens you actually use on your desk

Excess clutter on your workspace contributes to procrastination. Keep only a few pens, highlighters, and pencils in your pencil cup and store the rest away in a rubber band. Keep only what you really need and use out in the open.

8. Don't keep receipts forever

Avoid a layer of crumpled receipts at the bottom of your bag or wallet. Clear the clutter out once a week. Only hang onto receipts for big purchases or for items you may return.

Organizing the little things will help cut down on excess stress in your life. Once you start, it'll be easier to organize the rest of your life.

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