Thursday, May 13, 2010

Setting realistic goals

Getting organized can feel overwhelming. Clients always tell me that they feel exhausted just thinking about the process. Quite frankly, any major project or life change will feel overwhelming if it is not broken down into realistic, attainable goals. So in order to get organized, break it down and get realistic.

For example, your organizational goal is to clear off your kitchen counter and keep it that way. Break it down and spend 15 minutes a day tackling one pile at a time. When your 15 minutes is up and one pile has been managed, congratulate yourself on a job well done and feel satisfied that you accomplished the goal for the day. Keep chipping away until the entire counter is cleared.

Next, set realistic goals. In some cases, it is highly improbable that your kitchen counter will stay cleared for long. Unless you live alone, your counter may have the tendency to be a catch-all location for all other residents. So set a goal that is realistic for everyone involved. Maybe put an inbox tray or basket on your counter and let everyone know that if papers must come in, they are to be put into the basket. This way, most of your counter gets to stay clean and you are not feeling like an organizational failure every time Junior plops his school papers back on your clean counter.

Meagan Farrell, professional organizer, is the owner of Clear the Clutter organizing services. She can be reached at (360) 631-7268 or at Check out her blog at

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