My MIL told me for years that if I just made my bed every day, my bedroom would look better. She was right, but it wasn't until I wouldn't let myself get dressed for the day until my bed was made that it became a habit. I'm not one to stay in pajamas all day, so that worked for me.
Overrun with dirty dishes? Don't let yourself go to bed until they are dealt with. Nothing like losing sleep to encourage you to take care of that earlier. I actually enjoy doing laundry, so that one was never a big deal for me.
After a while, my house looked pretty decent, at least in all the places you could see. Closets and drawers? Those were another story altogether. I've even learned how to deal with those now, and overall, my house is pretty neat, but it took me years to figure out what worked for me.
Last week, I stumbled onto a resource I wish had been available 30 years ago. Clutterbug has a bunch of YouTube videos, and there is a lot on her website. I have read dozens of decluttering books, and nothing hit me the way this woman's advice did. Instead of a one size fits all type approach to organizing, she has you identify your natural inclination first. If you struggle with organizing, try taking her quiz. It's free, and you don't need to give her any information.
The quiz is here.
The first time I took the quiz, I really debated over several answers. The quiz said I was a Cricket, but when I read the description, it didn't quite fit. I changed a couple answers I had debated on, and then it said I was a Ladybug. Aha! That one sounded right to me. After reading a lot more of her stuff, I realize there are things I do like three of her "clutterbugs", but I am most like a ladybug.
She does an excellent job of describing everything to you, and gives great pointers for what will work for each organizing type. Like I said, I wished I had access to this information years ago, because most of what she suggests, is what ultimately worked for me.
My sister just moved her craft room and reorganized it. She was stifled by having everything put away. I laughed and said I work best with a clean slate. I told her about the Clutterbug website, and sure enough, she's a bee. Where I like things hidden away, she wants to see all of her projects.
My sister and I have been watching the clutterbug videos and talking about the info she gives. We are both very different in how we prefer things, but we agree she is spot on on what works for both of us.
Why do I mention that here? Every time I post photos of my sewing room here on my blog, or in any of my online groups, I get lots of comments and personal messages about how organized it all is. When it comes to my quilting stuff, I am most like the cricket I came out as the first time I took the quiz. My scrap user system is sorted by size, then color. My yardage is sorted by one yard or less, or more than a yard, also sorted by color. Thread is sorted by type, weight and color. Other things in my sewing room are not so specifically organized, and my ladybug shows through. Buttons are in a jar, zippers in a bag, rulers only hung by shape so they fit best on my pegboard. Non quilting fabrics are in totes by fabric type. Basically, the stuff I use the most is super organized, the other stuff is just divided into general categories.
Instead of asking me for advice, check out all of Cassandra Aarssen's stuff, because she is spot on in my opinion. She's the professional organizer, not me. She does have books you can buy, but she also has a bunch of stuff available for free.
And to keep things quilty related and personal, I had WAY too many projects out and visible. My version of cleaning those up? Get them into quilt tops, and once they are a quilt tops they can live on a hanger in the closet until I get around to quilting them.
These three quilt tops are all hanging in the closet now, out of my way. None of these have deadlines, but I have other things that do, so these needed to disappear from view. I'm almost finished another quilt top too, then I'll put borders on DD#3's wedding quilt so it's ready for next basting spree. After that I'll start back on the deadline quilts I'm not very far along on.
I had five overdue wedding quilts. I'm finished one, almost finished another, have one pinbasted, one that needs borders, and one with a lot to do. You'd think that with one finished and one to be finished this weekend, I'd be down to three, but no. I've had a nephew and a niece announce engagements, so I'll still be at five wedding quilts. Add to that three grandkids with new beds, and one new grandson due in January, and I've got plenty to keep me busy!