Mmmmm there’s nothing quite like it, is there? The anticipation. The thrill of the chase. The forbidden visions that frolic behind our eyelids… You weren’t expecting it. You definitely weren’t seeking it out, but here it is. Opportunity. Want. That burgeoning sense of desire building in your gut. You bite your lip as you luxuriate in your options… Do you dare?
Your mind made up, the world fades away as you reach towards your intended… Your fingers gently caressing your beloved as the last vestiges of doubt fade from your mind. Perhaps you exhale to clear your thoughts. At the very least a satiated smile overcomes your countenance. Ahhhhhhh…. AND IT’S ON SALE! IT’S YOUR LUCKY DAY!
Yes, ladies and gentleman, those good-looking organizing tools will get you every time. It’s like you have a sign tattooed across your forehead that shouts “I LOVE ME SOME ORGANIZING TOOLS! I DON’T KNOW HOW I’M GOING TO USE YOU, BUT YOU’RE COMIN’ HOME WITH ME TODAY! I CAN’T WAIT FOR YOU TO MEET ALL OF MY OTHER UNDERUTILIZED ORGANIZING PRODUCTS!”
Yep, yep, yep. I’ve been there myself. Quite often, actually. Oh, I’ve been seduced. The cuter they are, the harder I fall.
You see, we often mistake buying organizing supplies for getting organized.
It’s like we’re counting on the supplies to come to life after the lights go out beauty and the beast style. Except instead of teacups and grandfather clocks, file folders and drawer organizers will take care of our heavy lifting. We’ll wake up and our paperwork will be filed, laundry will be folded, and a system for toy organization will be in place and bulletproof.
It’s like buying new workout clothes before you start going to the gym. I mean, you can’t just roll up in there in your old Nikes. For you to fully squeeze every single drop of exercising goodness from the gym, your workout tops and bottoms best be coordinated, right? After all, you’ve gotta dress for success. Bust through the door in Lulu Lemon top to bottom and the inches just melt off! Wanna really drop some weight? Make sure you pick up a new gym bag, yoga mat, and $1000 juicer. That’ll really scare those pounds off.
And just like cute workout clothes won’t help you lose weight more quickly than a t-shirt and loose fitting pants, cute organizational supplies won’t either.
So what are the t-shirt and loose fitting pants of organization, AKA the 3 must have tools to organize anything?
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It doesn’t really matter what they are. Random laundry baskets from around your house. Empty shoe boxes you found under the bed. Some big ZipLock bags. If you really wanna get fancy, grab some banker's boxes. (That’s what I use with clients. They’re super easy to assemble, fold flat when you’re done, and stack like nobody’s business.)
Do not, I repeat, do NOT get your label maker out. It’s WAY too soon for that. I’m talking about working labels. Temporary labels. Perhaps even, ugly labels. Think Post It Notes. (Hey! Finally a way to get rid of all those ugly yellow ones you’ve been hoarding for years!) Personally, I use blue painter's tape because it’ll stick to just about anything but won’t ruin it when you pull it off.
A writing utensil
You know, to actually write out the names of the bins you’re labeling. I use one of those chisel tip Sharpies. They make the labels super easy to read and they’re big enough so that I don’t lose them. Much.
And that’s it! I promise! That’s all you need to get started on ANY organizing project. Those supplies will rock your world in ways you’ve never before realized! They will:
- Help you to get the grunt work out of the way right up front.
- Allow you to see exactly what you have, so you can shop for something that’s cute AND will actually work in the space.
- Try out the organizing system to see if it actually works before you invest money in products that might suck.
- Save a little money since you won’t buy stuff you don’t need and won’t return even though you think you will.
So, the next time a tall, dark, handsome set of bookshelves tries to seduce his way into your shopping cart, let him down gently and whisper that you’ll be back for him once you’ve figured out where he’ll fit in your life. If he doesn’t wait for you, then it wasn’t true love after all.