Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Every Room has Income and Outflow

A key part of recognizing what needs to be systematized in your home is recognizing what comes into and flows out of each room. Organizing is what you do to the stationary items in a room or space. You organize a closet. Systematizing is what you do to ensure a standard procedure for the items that go into or come out of a space.

How often do you find yourself "ReOrganizing" your space? This was a CONSTANT in my home, pretty much monthly. I was always reorganizing my pantry, my closet, my office, my craft room... I would get things organized, and then a month, two months, or three months down the road I would do it all over again. Is it because it wasn't "properly" organized in the first place? No, it was because I didn't have a SYSTEM for how things went into it or how they came out.

Now, my systems aren't perfect. They are more an organic work in progress. But I have not had to reorganize my pantry since April. I haven't had to reorganize our front closet since then, either. Instead of just fitting what I had in those places so they stored nicely, I actually thought through what belongs in the pantry, what categories of foods should be stored where, and what the best way to deal with occasional overflow would be so that I didn't end up with a crazy mess again.

Over the 2013 year, one of my goals is to systematize my home. It isn't a job that can be done in a weekend, so I am choosing to break it down into 12 months - one room a month. I'm starting by deciding which rooms need to be systematized, and what goes into and comes out of those rooms. Here's what the process looks like for me...

You may find that you have different rooms you want to create systems for. You will find that some rooms (like my living room and dining room) I am not creating systems for, because I already have systems in place that are working wonderfully. I hope that you will begin thinking about what areas of your home you'd like to tackle, and then use this printable to help you along the way. 12 months is a long time to commit to progress, but some of the reasons we fail at New Years Resolutions or personal goals are that we do not track our progress and we do hold ourselves accountable for what we say we want.

So... Before we dive in on January 1st, here's your first challenge... Download the free printable, and decide which 12 areas of your home you want to tackle this year. Think about the income and outflow of each room. Jot down your thoughts and check back soon, because together we're going to create systems for each of these areas!!

If you want an idea of what I will be doing each month and want to follow along with the same areas I'm doing, here's my plan for 2013:

January - Master Bedroom (Income - Clean Laundry, Linens; Outflow - Dirty Laundry, Trash)

February - Master Bathroom (Income - Toiletries, Paper Goods, Clean Towels; Outflow - Trash, Dirty Towels)

March - Master Closet (Income - Clean Laundry, Jewelry, Handbags; Outflow - Outfits)

April - Laundry Room (Income - Dirty Laundry, Laundry Care Products; Outflow - Clean Laundry, Trash)

May - Kitchen (Income - Groceries, Dirty Dishes; Outflow - Meals, Trash)

June - My Daughter's Room (Income - Clean Laundry, Hair Things, Linens; Outflow - Dirty Laundry, Trash)

July - Guest Room (Income - Clean Linens; Outflow - Dirty Linens)

August - Guest Bathrooms (Income - Paper Goods, Handsoap, Towels; Outflow - Trash, Dirty Towels)

September - Craft Room (Income - Craft Supplies; Outflow - Gifts, Cards, Trash)

October - My Office (Income - Wholesale Products, Invoices, Office Supplies; Outflow - Customer Orders, Trash)

November - My Husband's Office / Library (Income - Camera Equipment, Warranties and Manuals, Family Documents, Books; Outflow - Camera Equipment, Seasonal Books, Trash)

December - Crawl Space (Income - Seasonal Items, Holiday Decor, Wine, Toys, Permanent Storage Memory Items; Outflow - Seasonal Items, Holiday Decor, Wine, Toys)

Hopefully this gives you a good idea of what sort of things are Income / Outflow items. I'm sure I'll add to my list as we go, but this is the list I came up with today.

Happy Systematizing!!

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