Cultivating joy by calming the clutter

Cultivating joy by calming the clutter

We all know it's true: a cluttered home or office can suck the joy (and productivity) right out of the room! On the flip side, creating a calm and clutter free environment promotes peace, joy, and yes, productivity. Unfortunately for me, and maybe you too, keeping my clutter calmed does NOT come naturally. My creative brain likes to pop from thing to thing, leaving a mess in it's path as I go. I knew that I needed some help in this department, especially in our Joyfully Said headquarters where not everyone appreciates my crazy ways when it comes to organization. 

Enter Hello Sorted. This dynamic sister duo met me in my mess and knocked my socks off with the results of their efforts, proving just how much better an organized space, not only looks, but feels. But, before I wow you with the before and afters of our office makeover, I asked Hello Sorted to share with us their pro tips that we can run with in our own homes. Grab your warm beverage of choice, and get ready for some amazing tips and tricks!

Meet Crystal and Kayla, the girls of Hello Sorted!

We all know that a clutter free, organized environment does wonders for our mental health and happiness... and we are all about cultivating joy here at Joyfully Said! What is your #1 tip for cultivating and maintaining a clutter-free home?

We believe our homes are not containers for stuff, but rather a place for joy and connection.  So in order to practice that belief - our first tip is simple: Remember you LIVE in the space!  It's the place where there are family gatherings and fellowship! So much unnecessary pressure can be applied when it comes to curating or making a home Pinterest/Instagram worthy.  The space needs to work for your specific, everyday lifestyle.  Too many processes & rules can become overwhelming and the "organizing system" quickly breaks down, resulting in unwanted clutter. There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to organizing; it needs to be customized to one's lifestyle & routines in order for the longevity and upkeep to stick. It's only then will your home begin to transform into a manageable and clutter free oasis!

There is an especially large amount of things to organize and deal with after the holidays, from the new gifts to the taking down of the decor. What tips can you share for organizing seasonal decor? Although we provide several pieces in our Decor Capsules that can be used all year round, this tip can still help with all of us capsule users for storing the season specific items that come in each capsule! 

Our first suggestion, for taking down Christmas decor, is to make sure you have blocked out enough time in your day.  Be realistic.  If you know it takes you multiple hours, plan for that. You want to avoid a start/stop process by not doing little sections at a time. This type of task needs momentum and getting it done in one swoop is where you'll see the most success to avoid creating decor clutter.  In regards to an approach for organizing seasonal decor, it's easiest to create separate storage bins and keep them accurately labeled.  Try to avoid mixing seasons, even if a bin is not completely full - this will save on time when you're ready to decorate for a new season (plus provides some room for any new items you might add).  A suggestion for organizing capsule decor, is to have a detailed label on the storage bin. The joy of having a capsule is that it encompasses a minimal amount of items - making it easy to create the list! Pop that to the outside of the storage bin and you have a detailed description of the contents. The goal is to minimize the time spent opening & closing things, so you can quickly find what you're looking for. Labels will become your best friend! Side note for labels: use labels you know you'll be able to maintain.  If you're a crafty pro and enjoy making/buying fancy labels, great!  If you'd rather jot items on a piece of paper and adhere it to the storage bin with packing tape - awesome!  The only 'perfect' approach is one that you know you're going to be able to maintain (if a label needs to be updated).

What areas do your clients struggle with most, and what are your best strategies for helping them?

Simply put, we see storage as being the biggest struggle. Every room/space has some type of it. Whether it be large spaces like a garage or basement, or small spaces like a bathroom cabinet or utility (junk) drawer. It's not necessarily having too little storage space, either. We encounter situations where the home has plentiful storage, but that results in an abundance of landing places for items to scatter, settle and collect. Additionally, non-space related, clients struggle in the area with feelings of embarrassment and thinking they have the most disorganized space ever, so don't seek help and decide they will tackle the space themselves.  Only they never end up actually starting, which then creates more overwhelming feelings.  In these cases a strategy we suggest is to not think big picture and don't make any storage container purchases. Start micro. Decluttering and organizing small spaces (junk drawer) will generate a feeling of accomplishment.  Celebrate this!  You'll gain momentum, become less overwhelmed, and begin to trust your decision making process for future spaces. Remember, organizing works when it's specific to your everyday lifestyle. Start with what you have and you'll begin to discover all of the positives your space has to offer! 

As organizing professionals, what are some signs that it might be time to call you for help?

We understand it's not always easy to admit we need help.  If an organizing project has been on your to-do list for weeks, months, might be time to delegate.  Once you begin to feel overwhelmed and you're no longer enjoying your space, or the space isn't being used efficiently you need to honestly ask yourself, "Is this something I want/need to be spending my time on?".  If the answer is "No" - in most cases, you're probably never going to want to delegate much of your valuable time to it. You know your strengths and where your time is best spent to have the most impact and that's a great first step!  We help clients who are busy professionals, families during back-to-school, or at the start of a new year when new routines are taking shape. Additionally, often times it's during life transitions, when we get calls from clients -- a recent move (downsize or rightsize), a new baby, a marriage or divorce, or the passing of a loved one.  When life happens, the sense of control and order of a space can start to become less of a priority and start to snowball, but you don't have to handle these things alone. 

A HUGE thank you to Hello Sorted for taking the time to provide these insights! I cannot express how much better our office feels now that careful thought of how to set up stations for each function of the space that we need it for. Our office serves as an area for computer work, break room, coat storage, and even a small piece of our production is stationed in the office. We need it to pack a whole lot of bang for our buck into this space, so to speak. Here is what the space looked like before Hello Sorted stepped in:


And more yikes.

I'm now happy to report that our office is a much more peaceful and productive space, with spots designated for each task that needs to happen within the space, and labeled containers to help keep us organized as we go!

(Adding removable wallpaper to the back wall added such a fun, clean touch that NEVER would have happened if we hadn't first gotten our space organized and tidied up!)

(Every area of our office packs a big punch of purpose. This little corner not only now hides the existing plumbing lines that run through, but the small portion of production that we need this space for looks and feels a lot nicer!)

(For the first time EVER- I have my own desk space at work! SOOO thrilled about this... and looking forward to decorating it now!)

(Our office is also our break room! Everyone feels so much happier to eat their lunch and serve up some coffee in this tidied up space!)

(Our giant calendar isn't the prettiest, but it's a must have!)

Seriously, the girls of Hello Sorted are magic makers... but they also left me feeling like getting a space decluttered and organized is doable! They spent seven hours working in our office, and the benefits we have felt from working in a less chaotic space are priceless! Truly, the way a space is set up and the clutter it holds can play such a huge role in how you feel and function! It is so worth it to take the time to reduce clutter and really think about the best way to use a space.

We are SO excited to share that next month Hello Sorted will be joining us at our shop, Joyfully Said Home for a two hour Girls' Night Out! We'd love for you to join us on Thursday, March 26th for an evening of girl time while we discuss all things organization and declutter... and of course enjoy snacks, drinks, and shopping! All of the event details can be found here, as well as a link to sign up!   

Thank you for checking out our office makeover! May your home (and peace of mind) benefit from the tips and tricks shared by Hello Sorted! We'd love to see you on the 26th!


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