It’s now more important than ever to focus on things in our lives that bring us joy and happiness, to surround ourselves with things that we love, and to make daily living as easy as possible. A great place to start is in our own homes. We may not be able to control what’s going on in the world around us, but we most certainly can control what goes on in our own homes. Each day there are many things that need to be done from getting ready for our day in the morning to preparing meals and cleaning up the dishes at night. With so many tasks, why not make them as easy and enjoyable as possible? Here are some room-by-room ideas of things you can do to reduce stress and simplify life in your own home.

Got gadgets? Get rid of kitchen gadgets you don’t use that are taking up valuable space. Store frequently used items where you use them most. Keep large scissors, scotch tape, bag clips, pens, black sharpies (for dating food), and a small notepad in a drawer for easy accessibility at all times. Hang a customized grocery list on the fridge and check off food items as supplies run low. Store plastic grocery bags in an empty Kleenex box under the sink or in a drawer (it’s amazing how many you can actually cram in there). Match up lids with plastic bowls. Toss those that don’t have matches. Keep a hair clip in a small dish near the sink so it’s right there when you need it when preparing meals or washing dishes. In addition, keep a small dish on the counter for rings when doing dishes.

Store like items in clear, stackable, labeled containers or plastic drawers. (i.e. nail care, makeup, small creams and lotions, travel products, etc.). Pull out and use as needed and even carry to another room. Do you share the bathroom with others? Have a separate labeled container for each person. Store extra rolls of toilet paper in a drawer, basket or cabinet. Keep a set of cleaning products in each bathroom for fast, easy cleaning. Store shower cleaner and a sponge or scrub brush in the shower. Have a few extra minutes? Clean the shower while showering. Keep sink countertops clutter-free and organize the contents of drawers with drawer dividers. Do you enjoy listening to the radio in the morning? Invest in a small bathroom/shower radio to start your day off right.

Living Room
Keep this room clutter-free. Designate a home for remote controls. Keep only current magazines on the coffee table and recycle the rest. Minimize the number of knick-knacks and framed photos strewn about. Keep only those that you like and that are very special to you. The less you have, the easier it will be to clean and dust. Make this room beautiful. Display only things that make you happy.

On the bedside table keep only your essentials (i.e. lotion, Chap Stick, bottled water, alarm clock, and the current book you’re reading). Use a hamper for dirty laundry instead of the floor or a chair. Hang clean clothes in the closet where they belong. Make your bed every morning. You’ll feel great each time you walk into your room. Need more storage space? Use bed risers to lift up the bed frame and store items underneath. Keep a jar on the dresser for spare change and a little dish for emptying pocket items. Have an empty basket handy for putting items that go elsewhere in the house. Before going to bed at night take time to put things back where they belong.

Keep only the clothes that you wear and that make you feel great! Life is short. Why wear clothes you don’t like? Organize clothes by categories (i.e. slacks together, blouses together, dresses together, etc.) and then by color within the categories. For an orderly look, use only one kind of hanger (i.e. wood or all white). Store shoes in stackable clear plastic shoe bins either on the floor or on closet shelves. Use shelf dividers to keep stacks of clothes tidy and neat. Keep a donation bin on the floor to easily toss clothes into that you’re ready to part with. Giving to those in need will brighten your day!

Copyright © 2010 Always Organizing. All rights reserved.

Author's Bio: 

Amy Brueske is an organizing expert and owner of Always Organizing, specializing in residential and small business organizing services, serving the San Francisco North Bay Area (Sonoma, Marin, and Napa counties).

Amy is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), and the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization (NSGCD). Amy has written many articles on the topic of organizing and publishes a free monthly e-newsletter offering valuable organizing tips and solutions. For more information and to sign up for her e-newsletter visit: