Shannon Krause, chief operating organizer of Tidy Nest, answers questions about which organizing and cleaning resolutions aren’t worth it, according to the pro.
Upgrading Your Storage Solutions
Krause says one of the biggest organizational mistakes that people make at the start of a new year is purchasing a ton of storage solutions. And while it can be tempting to drive to Target or Home Depot and buy dozens of boxes or clear containers with the goal of using them to tidy your home, this may backfire.
“Firstly, we believe you should always declutter before buying organizing solutions so you know exactly what you need to store or contain,” Krause explains. This means people often end up with large storage bins that are half-full, versus the appropriate-size container for its contents. “Secondly, if you have a container to store the item, you’re more likely to keep it even if you’ve never used it, which isn’t the goal,” she adds. “And lastly, unused organizing solutions still count as clutter.”
Implementing the “One in, One Out” Rule
You’ve heard of the one-in, one-out rule, aka getting rid of something every time you add another item to your home or closet. “We get it,” says Krause. But, “we all have more items than we truly need, so replacing one item for another isn’t actually eliminating the clutter.”
Instead, follow a one-in, two-out rule. “As time goes by, clients get better and better at this exercise and end up removing more than just two items from their home each time,” Krause says.
This is one that I swear by, so I was curious to learn Krause’s reasoning. “We love this idea but not the location,” Krause explains. “Keep a donation box in your garage, entryway closet, mud room, front door, even the trunk of your car.” While she understands that having it within eyesight encourages you to add to the donation pile more frequently, she also sees clients taking items out of the donation box for the same reason. “If you’ve deemed an item ‘donate,’ it should leave your eyesight immediately,” she says. “Ideally it would leave your home just as fast.”
Replacing All Your Kitchen Essentials
If you’ve ever looked at your kitchen at the end of the year and felt the urge to get rid of everything, Krause suggests resisting the urge. “We don’t subscribe to this one,” she says. “Restocking your kitchen essentials at the beginning of each year is a nice idea in theory, but we believe you should be reviewing and decluttering your cabinets throughout the year.” That’s because different items have different shelf lives. Plus, why have pumpkin pie mix take up prime real estate all year?