Make your bed and 25 more organizing hacks to live by! Getting organized is one thing. Staying organized is something else altogether. Having been a professional organizer for more than 16 years, it’s my opinion that the key to staying organized lies in our ability to establish routines, which will, with time, become second nature. Friends and clients, as well as strangers who’ve heard me speak or have read one of the many articles I’ve written about getting organized, always ask: “How do you do it?” Today, I’m here to share my top 25 organizing hacks, all of which are part of my day-to-day routine.

  1. Make your bed. This is the single most important thing you should do—every day!
  2. To stay on task, use a calendar! Every day.
  3. Write a “to-do” list every single day of your life.
  4. Set up annual dentist and doctor appointments, for yourself, your family and your pets, a year in advance.
  5. Set up hair, nails and any other personal care appointments a year in advance.
  6. Set up annual HVAC maintenance appointments a year in advance.
  7. Ask your bank(s) to have all your bank statements generated on the same day of the month.
  8. Have all insurance policies (homeowners, flood, auto & umbrella) renew on the same day of the month. The downside is that payment for all policies will be due at the same time. The upside is that you’ll only have to deal with the paperwork once a year.
  9. Limit the number of credit cards you have to no more than three. Fewer credit cards equals fewer statements.
  10. Put as many accounts on auto-pay as possible. Be sure to keep track of payment types and withdrawal dates.
  11. Create a detailed username and password list.
  12. Create a comprehensive spreadsheet listing all accounts (utility, subscription, bank, etc.), account numbers, contact information, payment type and withdrawal date.
  13. Purchase no more than 10 perishable items in advance to be used as host/hostess gifts.
  14. Purchase several greeting cards—birthday, anniversary, get well and sympathy—in advance to keep at the ready.
  15. Limit your big box store shopping to what you need, not what you think you need.
  16. When it comes to closet organization, the absolute most important rule is: “buy one, purge two.”
  17. The second most important closet organizing hack is to purchase matching hangers. When you run out of hangers, it’s time to let go (and NOT buy more hangers).
  18. The same rule applies to shoe cubbies. If you run out of cubbies, it’s time to reassess your shoe collection.
  19. Stop shopping! The more you buy, the less room you’ll have; the less room you have, the more disorganized you will become.
  20. Wait 24 hours before purchasing anything online. Impulse shopping is the enemy.
  21. To save time and money, map out your errands.
  22. Quality versus quantity is a key component to staying organized.
  23. Just because something’s on sale doesn’t mean you need it. Be mindful when shopping.
  24. To stay organized, you need to tidy up a little bit every day.
  25. If you don’t use something, don’t need it, don’t love it and don’t want it, get rid of it! TODAY!

Habits—be that they are acquired or inherent—are those actions we naturally perform without thought. If you are able to embrace just five of these tasks into your daily life, you’ll be on your way to organizational bliss. Remember, household organization starts with making your bed every day, plus adopting my list of 24 organizing hacks to live by.