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Additional Organizing Resources

Is there a professional organizer near me? www.NAPO.net

How to get organized? Visit nine organizing discussion forums on everything from filing paperwork to organizing your home, your life and your time.

www.getorganizednow.com

Forgetful? Get free email and wireless reminders of your exam dates, paper due dates and more at www.free-minder.com


 

 

 

 

Dorm Organizing 101
By Lea Schneider, Professional Organizer, NAPO

Ask a guy what he's packing for his dorm and he'll say the Xbox. Ask a girl, and she'll tell you about all the "cute" stuff. They'll both tell you how awesome it will be away from home, eating Easy Mac at three a.m. and cranking the tunes.

 

Soon they will be singing the song, "I have too much stuff. I don't have a home for this stuff. I don't have time to deal with it."   If you are joining the ranks of those heading off to college, what you really need to pack is organization.

 

Pack a Plan

As you pack, visualize the item's storage spot. If you can't picture it, don't take it. Face it; you've got very few choices: bed, desk, closet and dresser.   Maximize storage by using hidden and vertical spaces. (Check your dorm's rules.) Bunk, loft, or elevate beds onto cement blocks or bed risers. Then place or stack storage tubs underneath for sports equipment, off-season clothing, extra bedding and your food stash.

 

In the closet, place seldom-needed items at the very top. Get a second bar to hang from the main bar to give you two rows for clothing. Add a shoe storage rack to the bottom.

 

Top your dresser with a small bookshelf to holds stacks of books, CDs and videos. Use over the door hooks or organizers on both sides of every door for wet towels, backpacks, jackets etc.   On your desk, add another bookshelf or one made with boards and bricks to allow you to stack computer components and still have study room.

 

Keep Sane With These Tips

1) Just for Now! The Just for Now mistake is the failure to make a permanent storage decision. All the things you set down, "just for now" become tomorrow's messy clutter.

 

2) Organize Your Clutter?  You CANNOT organize clutter. If you don't love it, use it or need it, then ditch it. Now go get organized.

 

3) It's Not Math Class, Still Apply Some Logic.

When you store away your belongings, put similar items together, such as all your school supplies. Then put things as close as you can to where you will use them.

 

4) Avoid Drama.  Stubbornly refusing to label things gets you a year of searching and don't you have better things to do? Like live peacefully? Solve the drama of where is it and whose is it with labels, labels, labels. Label everything from clothing to CDs, DVDs, books, video equipment, shoes, towels, and tubs - right down to the shampoo bottle.

 

5) Keep on Keepin' On.  Organizing is not a one-time deal. You have to keep it up. Anticipate change and change things as you need.

 

Lea Schneider is a professional organizer and member of the National Association of Professional Organizers.  She has hauled things up nine flights of stairs and organized dorm rooms at Ball State University, University of Kansas and Florida State University. Her company, Organize Right Now provides solutions for home, office and life through consultation and hands-on organizing. Visit her website, which includes a free complete dorm packing list, at Organize Right Now LLC or call 850-477-2582

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