Let’s go shopping!


Oooh, did I hear a collective murmur of happiness? After all, isn’t buying organizing supplies the best way to Get Organized? If only it were that easy.

Buying more “stuff” without a clear idea of how these items will make your office or home more efficient and functional just doesn’t work. You just end up with more things. I always advise my organizing clients to wait to purchase anything until we determine what they’ll need for the space they’re using.

I try to reuse what they have on hand, such as a filing cabinet or drawer organizers. Then I give them a trial solution, like using a shoe box as an “inbox” for mail for a week or so, just to see how it feels. If it doesn’t work, then we’ll try another technique. If they’re happy, then they have carte blanche buy whatever type of inbox they like.

But every once in a while, I make some exceptions. You can’t go wrong with my favorite car trash bag, which costs less than $6 and comes with a 25-year warranty (have you ever heard of a trash bag needing a 25-year warranty?). It hangs from the back of a front seat so the driver and kids can reach it easily. It’s easy to use and about as attractive as a trash bag can be. And when you open your car windows, it doesn’t blow around like a jellyfish in an ocean current the way a plastic grocery store does.

What organizing “essentials” do you wish you’d never bought? And which ones make your life better?

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About organizesf

Professional organizer June Bell (www.organizesf.com) combats clutter and chaos with sage advice, tested techniques and good humor.
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3 Responses to Let’s go shopping!

  1. Um. I constantly buy organizing things without a clear idea. The one thing I wish I’d never bought was this wire-like desktop organizer. It had a few slits for file folders and a few pull out drawers for more folders. Seemed like a good idea at the time. But it didn’t stay put. It moved around on top of the desk, and my fingers or other items always got caught in the wire mesh. Not a good buy.

  2. Susan says:

    I like the trash bag idea, but it might be hard to reach from the front seat. I usually keep a plastic bag draped over the gear shift.

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