First Step to Organized Living: Believe It’s Possible!

By Kim Ode
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

A new year prompts scrutiny. We look at our lives, homes and jobs with the goal of being more organized. A key step is simply believing that we can do better, whether it’s having cleaner closets or better ways of solving problems.

We asked several professional organizers how they tackle achieving a more organized approach to life and work.

Here are their best tips:

Kristina Fortune Anderson, Vitality Organizing, Eden Prairie, Minn. (

The first step to getting organized is to find your big why. Find a deeply compelling reason why getting organized is important to the vision you have for your life. To keep from feeling overwhelmed, focus your attention on the present moment and take one small action toward your goal. Whatever you do, don’t criticize, blame or shame yourself for perceived past or current organizing failures. My best advice for maintaining success is to take imperfect action and course-correct as you go.

Extra tip: Remember that becoming organized is a process and there is no one right way to do it. Experiment until you find what works for you.

Michelle Thomas and Susan Buesgens, reVision Consultants, Woodbury, Minn.

First step: Acknowledge the cause and decide to make a change. Begin by prioritizing the specific areas of your life that need organizing. To keep from feeling overwhelmed, focus on one task at a time, otherwise everything ends up incomplete. Don’t overcommit. Take back your time by not agreeing to everything that you are asked to do.
Don’t keep something that isn’t functional or you don’t love. It’s clutter and can be a time drain. Everything needs a home, and less clutter gives you a clear mind to tackle any aspect of your life. To maintain success, create a calendar and use to-do lists to break down your day into smaller, more manageable pieces.

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