Organizing For Dummies
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After you spend all the time and effort required to get your home organized, rather than waiting for the disorganization to return, you can do a number of things to maintain the order and harmony that you’ve achieved. An ounce of prevention goes a long way.

Take care of it right away

Sometimes, the best way to fix something is to get to the source of the problem. If your roof is leaking, you can spend copious amounts of time figuring out where to put the buckets to catch the drips. But it’s better to simply fix the leak.

The same principle holds true for the disorganization in your life. Rather than coming up with more intricate strategies and systems to manage your overly complicated life, it may be better to catch the problem at the source. You can, for example:
  • Put groceries and other purchases away as soon as you bring them home.
  • Put photographs in an easy-to-load album as soon as you get them home from the photo shop and finish oohing and ahhing. Don’t throw them in a shoebox and put off the task of sorting and marking them.
  • Put it back as soon as you're finished with it. No “Yes, but . . . ."
  • Keep a container that can be recycled next to where you usually read the newspaper. After you finish reading the paper, put it immediately into the recycling container.
  • Clean up as you go. Don’t wait until the end, when you’re looking at a big mess.

Add fewer things to your life

One of the reasons your life becomes more stressful is that you probably have too many “things.” Fewer possessions mean a less complicated life. You can really live very happily without many of the things you buy. So before you pull out your wallet at the cash register or pick up the phone or computer mouse to order something, ask yourself the following questions:
  • Do I really need this item?
  • Would the quality of my life be seriously compromised if I passed this up?
  • How many of these do I already have?
If you’re like most people, your answers to these questions will be No, No, and Enough.

Here are some other buying suggestions that you may want to consider:
  • Don’t buy stuff just because it’s on sale.
  • Don’t buy in bulk unless you’re sure that you have a place to put it all.
  • Don’t buy anything without considering where you’re going to put it.

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