Staying Organized with Launch Pads

Being organized does not necessarily mean that you accomplish everything faster. Being organized, however, does require that you help yourself by establishing actionable areas to make your finished goals easier. I call these actionable areas, launch pads. Here are some examples of some key launch pads to keep in a typical household.

Teeing It Up

A golf ball is placed on a tee, so that the ball is in a position that it can be struck cleanly. Teeing up is a step that is taken so the next step is easier. Effective organizing systems need to be, not only a series of stages, but a series of stages that are each “teed up” for each subsequent stage.

For example, if your system for organizing the ugly mail is hiding it in a pretty basket, you have not teed up the next stage well.

The Barrier of Perfection

Several clients have told me, “I’d like to see your house. I’ll bet it’s perfect.”  My home is not perfect and for one very good reason.  I don’t strive for perfect.  I don’t believe good organizing is about being perfect. Voltaire is credited with saying “The perfect is the enemy of the good.” Another version I have heard is “Perfect …


What Your Dining Table Has In Common With a Runway In Memphis

Want to make your home more inviting? The dining table is usually a great place to start. If it’s piled with mail, schoolwork, and crafts then it’s not very welcoming. To keep your table clear and inviting, it helps to think of it as a runway at the FedEx “Super Hub” at Memphis International Airport.

The most valuable organizing tool is a clear surface for processing.


Circulation Prevents Accumulation

  This is the big one.  This is the trunk of the tree from which all my other organizing philosophies branch out.  But what exactly do I mean by circulation? A truly effective organizing system must circulate freely, just as your body’s blood supply must circulate freely.   In both cases, when there’s a blockage there’s a problem.  It’s also important …

The Annual Purge

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, April 2008 THE ANNUAL PURGE I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.  CIRCULATION PREVENTS ACCUMULATION.  What better time of year than spring for a fresh start? Open the windows and let the musty winter out and the clean spring air in.  Open the storage room and let the old junk out and the new …

Dedicated Spaces

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, March 2008

Dedicated Spaces
I know I’m not the first Professional Organizer to talk about dedicated spaces and that’s for a very good reason. While there are many different ways to GET organized there is no better way to STAY organized than to recognize dedicated spaces.

Top 10 Golden Rules of Storage

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, August 2007 TOP 10  GOLDEN RULES OF STORAGE A couple weeks ago Real Simple magazine contacted me, requesting my top 3 clutter control tips in the home office and kitchen.  Now I have nothing against Real Simple and I have no problem giving away my best tips, but I realized I simply didn’t have what they …


Focus on Filing, Part 2: User-Friendly Filing

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, May 2007 FOCUS ON FILING, PART 2:  USER-FRIENDLY FILING The AVERAGE executive wastes one hour a day looking for lost or misplaced items.  That’s six weeks a year!      –The Wall Street Journal Last month I discussed the File Cycle, the lifecycle of a file in four stages of activity: Running, Sitting, …

Why is Clutter Like a Vampire?

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, October 2006 WHY IS CLUTTER LIKE A VAMPIRE? “80 percent of what we keep we never use.” -Barbara Hemphill, Agency Sales Magazine, 4/1/03 Most of us hang on to much more stuff than we need, but few of us want our homes and offices to LOOK that way.  So what do we do?  We …