Organize Your Garage

Make room to park your car in the garage!

The garage is the “quick in the moment” dumping ground

for stuff going in and out of the house.

 – Marla Dee

Twenty-five percent of people with 2-car garages don’t park in them at all. A third can only park one car, largely due to garage clutter. (U.S. Dept. of Energy study) and 24% of homeowners are embarrassed to leave their garage doors open. (Impulse Research survey).

Use the Clear & Simple Way to clutter clear your garage. You’ll love parking your car there, enjoy having things organized and might even want to show it off!

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Garage Guide

SEE IT – Take a look at where you are now. Answer the questions for the whole garage including specific areas such as tool and equipment storage.

  • What’s working? You can be specific or general.
  • What do you like (if anything) about the look, feel and function?
  • Are there things you know you want to change?
  • What isn’t working? What don’t you like?
  • Is there stuff that doesn’t belong here, like donations and past time stuff?
  • Be honest… is your garage a dumping ground because you just don’t know what else to do with the stuff?

MAP IT – Make a written plan for what you want the most for this space. The garage is often the first place we see/enter as we arrive home. It matters.

  • How do you want your garage to look, feel and function?
  • Create an online board of images that inspire you.
  • Create a mind map showing all the elements you want.
  • What do you want most from your garage? (i.e. to park cars, storage for tools, yard equipment, outdoor gear, etc.)
  • Allow yourself to think differently about the garage. For example, would you appreciate having the walls finished? Look at pictures for inspiration.
  • What do you want to add to your garage, like shelves and containers?

DO IT – Take the steps to make it happen. Look on your calendar and set up time for the transformation!

  • Choose an area to start with. For the garage specifically, we suggest breaking things down into categories and tackling one at a time (i.e. yard tool and equipment, hand and power tools, sports equipment, outdoor gear, decorations, home maintenance items, donations).
  • Go through the S.T.A.C.K.S.© System for the category (Sort, Toss, Assign, Contain, Keep it up, Simplify). By following S.T.A.C.K.S.© the project will be easier and you will save money. Go to www.clearsimple.com/systems.
  • Enjoy shopping for the shelves and containers you want and need.
  • Once you complete each category, take time to celebrate. We know you will feel a sense of freedom as you move through each one.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Garage Guide

 

Clear & Simple, SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT., Marla Dee, Kate Fehr, Organize Your Garage, Organize Your Car
Clear & Simple, SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT., Marla Dee, Kate Fehr, Organize Your Garage, Organize Your Car, Container Store, elfa

Your Guides to a simpler life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr.

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

Organize Your Kitchen

An organized kitchen is a happy kitchen!

It’s in the kitchen where the warmth of shared memories, 

laughter and life create a recipe that spans generations.

 – Yuvraj Kakodiya

The kitchen is the gathering place for family and friends. It is the place we go to nurture our bodies and connections. Because so much lands and happens in the kitchen it can get chaotic quickly. How often have you cleared the kitchen counter only to have it be cluttered up the next day?

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© is the 3-step organizing system that works for all the areas of your space and life. Let’s use it to transform your kitchen. Remember you can start small with one area and then move to others.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Kitchen Guide

SEE IT – Take a look at where you are now. Have each person answer the questions below for the whole kitchen and then other areas such as the pantry. When you are done, take time to share with each other.

  • What’s working? You can be specific or general.
  • What do you love about the look, feel and function?
  • Are there things you know you want to change?
  • What isn’t working? What don’t you like?
  • Is there stuff that doesn’t belong here, like paper piles on the counter?
  • Are you doing things other than cooking and eating in your kitchen?

MAP IT – Make a written plan for what you want. Go after what you really desire. The kitchen is often a central gathering and connecting place.

  • How do you want your kitchen to look, feel and function?
  • Create an online board of images that inspire you.
  • Create a mind map showing all the elements you want.
  • Do you prefer completely clear countertops or to have some items out? 
  • What colors would make you happy? What kind of decor?
  • What do you want to add to your kitchen, like new dishes or containers?

DO IT – Take the steps to make it happen. Look on your calendar and set up time for the transformation!

  • Choose an area to start with. We suggest starting small and building up from there. For example, you could start with the countertops and junk drawer, then go to other drawers, cupboards, refrigerator and end with the pantry.
  • Go through the S.T.A.C.K.S.© System for the area (Sort, Toss, Assign, Contain, Keep it up, Simplify). By following S.T.A.C.K.S.© the project will be easier and you will save money. Go to www.clearsimple.com/systems.
  • Enjoy shopping for the containers you want and need.
  • Once you complete each area, take time to celebrate. We know you will enjoy cooking and being in your kitchen. How fun would it be to schedule a family date night in your happy space?

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Kitchen Guide

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Clear & Simple, SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT., Organize Your Kitchen

Your Guide, Marla Dee.

I love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

Organize Your Paper

Are you drowning in a sea of paper? Are the piles taking over your space and your life?

Do  you remember when getting a letter in the mail was a treat? The purpose of paper and information is connection, education, growth, creativity and productivity. Sadly, we have lost touch with this pupose due to the overwhelm. We need help. We need systems to handle all the information coming at us every day.

Time to go from Paper Pile Pain to Paper Power!

Marla Dee

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© is the 3-step organizing system that works for all the areas of your space and life. Let’s use it to change the paper pain to paper power!

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Paper Guide

SEE IT – Take a look at where you’ve been and where you are now. Do your best to be neutral and take the observer viewpoint while exploring below:

  • Go around your space and take pictures of all the paper piles. Then look at the pictures – what do you see?
  • Tap into your emotions and write the story your paper clutter tells.
  • Take time to write what’s working. You can be specific or general.
  • Is your active paper separate from your older papers? Or mixed up.
  • What isn’t working? Where are you stuck and why?
  • What is stressing you the most about your paper pain?
  • Are you holding onto outdated ways of handling paper?

MAP IT – Make a written plan for what you want. Think about the big picture and overall goals with the paper. You can work out the details later.

  • Write how your space will look and feel when you have the right homes and habits in place for handling all of the paper that comes in.
  • Create an online board of images that reflect what you want most.
  • Create a mind map showing the elements of your ideal area and systems.
  • Now take some time to write a new story. How do you want to feel when handling your paper? How might you be open to a different way (i.e. having less paper, using simplified systems, getting help)?

DO IT – Take the steps to make it happen. The DO IT step is loaded because you are now touching all the paper. We will introduce you to the subsystems of iRAFT© for the active paper and S.T.A.C.K.S.© for all the rest. Get help from a professional organizer if needed!

  • Gather and start with your active paper before the older stuff. This would be your most recent piles of incoming paper and mail, bills to be paid, and such. You will use the system of iRAFT© for these papers. iRAFT© stands for incoming, Read, Action, File and Toss. You will want detailed guidance on each step of this system. Get everything at www.clearsimple.com/iRAFT.
  • After you get your active paper organized, you can tackle your older paper and files. Time for the S.T.A.C.K.S.© System that guides you through each step. www.clearsimple.com/systems. You will also want to consider the FreedomFiler System for all your filing needs! www.clearsimple.com/freedomfiler
  • Once you complete your active paper, take time to celebrate.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Paper Guide

Your Guide, Marla Dee.

I love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

Organize Your Bedroom

Is your bedroom a peaceful sanctuary or a cluttered disaster?

Because the bedroom is behind closed doors, it’s easy to ignore the clutter that builds up there. But continuing to ignore your bedroom means always waking up feeling tired and overwhelmed.

If you were standing at the door to your bedroom right now, what would you be seeing and feeling? Is it a peaceful sanctuary or a cluttered disaster?

The purpose of your bedroom is rest, relaxation, intimacy and healing. You can transform your space by the following Clear & Simple’s easy system.

Marla Dee

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© is the 3-step organizing system that works for all the areas of your space and life. Let’s use it to transform your bedroom.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Bedroom Guide

SEE IT – Take a look at where you’re at. Have each person answer the questions below for the whole bedroom (we will do the clothes closet later). When you are done, take time to share with each other.

  • What’s working? You can be specific or general.
  • What do you love about the look, feel and function?
  • Are there things you know you want to change?
  • What’s not working? What don’t you like?
  • Are there things in your bedroom that don’t belong there?
  • Are you doing things other than rest and intimacy in your bedroom?

MAP IT – Make a written plan for what you want. Go after what you really desire as this is the most important room in your home.

  • How do you want your bedroom to look, feel and function? Have FUN!
  • Create an online board of images that inspire you. Go for it!
  • Create a mind map showing all the elements you most want.
  • Is there a theme for your room such as beach house?
  • What colors and textures would make you happy?
  • What do you want to add to your bedroom, like a reading chair?

DO IT – Take the steps to make it happen. Look on your calendar and set up time for the transformation. Try playing music and make this joyful.

  • Choose which area you want to start with. We suggest starting small and building up from there. For example, you could do the bed and side tables, then go to the dresser and rest of the room.
  • Go through the S.T.A.C.K.S.© System for the project (Sort, Toss, Assign, Contain, Keep it up, Simplify). By following STACKS the process you will save time, energy and money. Go to www.clearsimple.com/systems/
  • Once you complete each area, take time to celebrate. Why not have a date night in your new bedroom! We promise you will sleep better and wake up happier.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.© For Your Bedroom Guide

Your Guide, Marla Dee.

I love teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.

SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT.

The 3 step foundation system to get organized!

When we are confronted with all the stuff in our space, organizing can feel overwhelming! We don’t even know where to start. Marla Dee defines clutter as “delayed decision or holding onto the past.” The stuff seems to pile up because there are just too many decisions to make. So we need a simple place to start. Try this three step system for any project of any size. For more details get the C&S Systems card here.

Take the 3 steps in order

SEE IT – What’s working, what’s not working and why?

The first step is SEE IT.©, which stands for take a look at where you’ve been. Before you dive into touching the stuff, take 5 minutes to answer the questions what’s working, what’s not working and why? 

MAP IT – How do I want my space to look, feel and function?

The second step is MAP IT.©, which stands for make a plan for what you want. This can seem overwhelming also. To make this step simple write how you want your space/project to look, feel and function when you’re done.

DO IT – STACKS. Sort, Toss, Assign, Contain, Keep it up, Simplify

The third step is DO IT.©, which stands for take the steps to get it done. For this step, try out the Action System of STACKS. Now that you are touching the stuff, the project gets crazy. The power of STACKS is taking one step at a time.You do this by asking one question and making only one decisionat a time. Tune into our blog next week to get more details. 

Get the Clear & SIMPLE SYSTEMS CARD and more here

Clear & Simple SYSTEMS Card

Get your own card to use anytime

Were you born with the organizing gene?

Were you born with the organizing gene?

Did anyone ever tell you that organizing is a SKILL that only 10-12% of the human population on the planet earth is born with (see note below)? Most people assume that everyone should just know how. Parents expect their kids to know how to clean up their rooms. Bosses expect their employees to know how to organizing their office. Yet, 90% of the human population on the planet earth really struggle.

So believe me when I say…
 – If clutter clearing was easy, the piles wouldn’t be there.
 – And if organizing was easy, the chaos wouldn’t be here.

If you are part of the 10% then:

  • Walking into a room filled with clutter and chaos gets you excited  
  • Your hands get itchy and you want to start touching and moving the stuff
  • You go into a trance or creative zone when you are doing the work
  • You are often helping other people with their disorganization and maybe you have even started an organizing business.

If you are NOT born with the innate skill then:

  • You struggle with where to start, what to do and how to keep it up
  • Even thinking about clutter clearing or organizing is draining 
  • Your attempts to get organized have left you feeling helpless and hopeless
  • You have probably ready many books and tried many approaches only to give up

My story of how it all began…
It was April of 1999 when I met my first organizing client. I was there to work on her home office. I was excited and also terrified. We had only spoken on the phone so I didn’t know what to expect and I felt clueless about how I would help her.  I had many tools and lots of experience to draw from but I didn’t have a system to take us through the process.

Throughout my first year I witnessed over and over again that my clients were wired differently from me. They got confused and didn’t understand the steps. This is when the Clear & Simple Systems were born. I realized I needed a way to teach them the SKILL. And I wanted it to be fun and easy. 

Coming up, I will be sharing SEE IT. MAP IT. DO IT. and STACKS. These systems teach the SKILL. These simple steps are what make organizing easier.  If you want more information now, go to www.clearsimple.com/systems


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0WsdRs6WoT0

NOTE: In the last 20 years, I have consulted with hundreds of clients and audiences. According to my research only 10-12% of the human population is born with the organizing gene, with the innate skill. The other 90% really struggle.

Your Guide, Marla Dee
 – teaching the Clear & Simple Way to live free of clutter and get organized at last