I like organization. I like order. It saves time. It creates a LEAN way of living. Every item has a home location where you can quickly find it, use it, and return it. It is a beautiful thing when someone asks ‘where are the scissors’ and I can confidently respond with ‘look in the laundry room, top left drawer’. I use my time for productive activities rather than going on a scavenger hunt to find the scissors, a screwdriver or car keys.
When I was a single mom and the only user of all things, I knew exactly where to find anything at any time. Now, I am one of six scissor users. And, let’s not forget the friendly ghost who seems to need the scissors very frequently and doesn’t ever return the item to its proper home. Does this sound familiar?
How do I maintain organization and not go crazy?
First, identify the home location for commonly used items. Scissors go in the top desk drawer. Potholders go in the drawer by the oven. The dog harness hangs on the peg in the garage. TV remotes sit in the ottoman tray. Say the home location out loud during clean up time. Make a label.
Second, set the expectation for each family member to put items back in its home location after being used. The scissors will always be in the top desk drawer. In full transparency, the odds of this happen in our home is one out of two.
Distractions happen. The item is on the loose. I ask the last known user and often get a puzzled look or a ‘not me’. Sometimes I will solicit help to find the missing item. Other times I go on a solo scavenger hunt. Why? Because I am the only one going crazy because I can’t find the item, need the item, and want the item back in its home location. I don’t have time to hunt when I’m in a crunch. Can you relate?
Last, buy a backup item and store it in your secret place. I do have a stash of things like scissors, stamps, favorite pens, and candy that only I know its home location. It allows me to be a single user who can achieve an effective organization and a LEAN way of living. Sometimes a momma has to do what a momma has to do.
A lost pair of scissors will make me a bit crazy simply because I don’t have time for the scavenger hunt. An organized home will push me into a never-ending cycle of chores to maintain. However, I have learned to laugh at myself in those moments, go to the backup stash and move on with the new pair of scissors.