Usually getting organized is right up there with exercise or weight loss on people’s New Year Resolutions List. As an organizer, I know that it’s people’s ability to create and sustain a new habit that solidifies her/his reaching any goal — let alone changing a lifestyle for either one’s physical clutter or body clutter.

So, have you heard the term rightsize yet? Based on my clientele, I’m going to suggest that this is indeed on the minds of many who truly want to get organized for 2017 and beyond. One of my newest clients told me, “Jean Marie, I want to be able to move on a dime.” Even though she is not planning to move, the thought of being ready just in case is high on her priority list and rightsizing her home of 40+ years is a lifestyle change she wants to implement. As we purge her house of non-essentials, we will shed hundreds of pounds physically in “stuff” and her mind will experience a “freeing” of possessions lifting her spiritually.

I made up my own definition of rightsize based on what I am instinctively absorbing out in the organizing industry in northern New Jersey.

POSSE’s Definition of “rightsize”:

(rahyt-sahyz) verb

  1. To make one’s space contain only what one loves, uses and needs.
    Once rightsized, the mind can relax at home.
  2. To fit comfortably in its space or place.
    Rightsizing the clutter will allow for freedom of movement.
  3. The ability to decrease one’s possessions keeping only what feels good, fits well and is non-stressful to the eye and mind.
    Decluttering will be necessary to rightsize the home.

So what I’d like to give our readers this month is a suggested list of ideas you can accomplish in your home in order to help you rightsize your haven. Also, this is a recommended list, see if you can come up with your own creative ideas to rightsize…

Time Management Rightsizing: (#1 Tip Hint Hint)

  • Schedule an “Organizing Time” on your calendar each week. When that time comes, work on your biggest organizing challenge or pick one of the below.

Whole-Home Decluttering:

  • Throw out one extra “thing” a day that truly is garbage in your house. Or, gather one extra bag of garbage a week/month.
  • Set up a “Donation Bin” in a convenient location and schedule a monthly pick up with your favorite charity.
  • Go onto your county’s website and block the dates on your 2017 calendar for a shredding, electronic and hazardous waste drop off. Then schedule another date for each of these opportunities two weeks prior to get ready for each drop off.
  • For every 2017 major holiday whether you cook or go to a loved one’s house as a guest, go through your kitchen for non-perishable foods and cookware that you truly will not use and donate to your local food bank or soup kitchen.

While Out of the House:

  • Plan a time (monthly or whatever works for you based on your shopping habits) to return items to stores, including shipping if purchased via the web, that you won’t truly use or wear.
  • When traveling this year, take not only your old undies but clear out your older cosmetics and toiletries too and take them along on your trips. Toss and leave them behind as you travel since you would have let them go anyways. And remember, lots of “lotions and potions” shouldn’t be rubbed into your porous skin after a year.
  • Set boundaries/inventories for the amount of “stuff” you might be buying from places such as Costco and BJ’s. If you purchase a 20-pack of toilet paper it’s not going to fit under your bathroom vanity so you’ll need a secondary home, where will it live and do you really want to take up that space?

Closet/Cabinet Related:

  • Seasonal clothes – each time you change out your closets and drawers for the new weather, see if you can let go of 25% of what you are swapping out. We wear the same 20% of our clothing 80% of the time.
  • Medications/Vitamins/Supplements – Collect all of the following from all your medicine and kitchen cabinets. Dispose of responsibly those pills which are outdated and/or you didn’t feel worked well for your body.
  • Truly size up all spices in your kitchen. Look for the expiration dates and circle with a Sharpie. Toss the ones that are beyond their lifecycle and spices that you really will not use in a recipe based on the way you cook.
  • Review one shelf in your linen closet each week. Prune your sheets and towels according to your current bedding and donate to an animal shelter. Label each shelf when finished with the sizes such as twin, queen, king, washcloths, fingertip, hand towels, bath towels etc.

Paper Related:

  • Go through one file a day or one desk drawer a week. Cull, recycle or shred accordingly.
  • Visit your safe, fire box, or bank’s safe deposit box on the weekends our clocks are changed. Are your vital documents in order?

Since POSSE specializes in “whole-home” decluttering, I can tell you from experience that most homeowners are striving to rightsize whether they have any intention of selling or moving. People are drowning in their own houses and minds (that is another subject in itself) with things and thoughts they want gone…

Finally, I wish you lots of motivation, inspiration and perspiration relative to rightsizing your abode this year. I remember one of the first presentations I ever gave… there was a woman in the audience who said “Jean Marie, I spent the first half of my life accumulating things and now in the second half of my life I’m trying to rid myself of things.”