4 simple steps to organize any space (even if you’re dealing with a great big mess!)

Being organized can really be the difference between a happy home and a not-so-happy home.

But sometimes organizing can seem like a huge hassle or giant project. The good news is that no one has to feel that way anymore with these simple steps to tackle any mess and organize any space.

Organizing a messy house can be overwhelming. Follow these simple steps to get it done faster!

There have been times when everything in my home was not always so organized. Life happens fast, and I have figured out that we need to adapt even faster!

But being organized makes everyday life so much easier, and essentially makes me feel so much happier!

Here you can learn 4 simple steps to easily organize any space!

This could be used to organize anything from a small junk drawer to a tornado mess of a basement. Try these simple steps to tackle the smallest to largest organizing projects.

Simple Step #1: Decide what organizational task you want to work on first.

Think about things that might affect your task.

  • How much time do I have to work on this task?
  • How important is this task compared to everything else on my plate right now?

It might seem silly to ask yourself these questions, but I learned this actually saved me from taking on huge projects that I just was not ready for right then, as well as projects that I realistically needed a buddy to help me with!

Additional Tip: If you feel overwhelmed by your disorganized space, start with a small organizing task like cleaning out a junk drawer. It is amazing how tackling one small task feels like a huge relief!

Once you accomplish a small task, it gives you the feeling of accomplishment and motivation to move onto the next organizing task. (It’s one of our recommendations for getting unstuck when decluttering and organizing your home.)

Once you have narrowed down your ideas about what project or task to start first, it is time to move on to the next simple step.

survey the area and make a plan
Before you start, survey your messy, disorganized area and make a plan of action.

Simple Step #2: Survey your area.

Let’s say you want to organize your entire kitchen.

Stand in the kitchen doorway and just start looking around.

Don’t pick anything up yet.

Think about what makes sense to tackle first.

If you can’t put the stuff from your kitchen counters away until the pantry is decluttered and organized, then you know what you need to focus your efforts on first.

Once you have a “plan of attack,” then you can get to work.

group like items together while sorting
The next step is to clear out everything in the space, grouping like items together in the process.

Simple Step #3: Remove, sort and toss.

When removing items from your space, it’s a lot easier to organize if you start grouping like items together.

When sorting an office desk junk drawer, for example, keep all of your paper clips (and other clip-like objects) in the same area when clearing it out.

The same goes for all pens, pencils, and so on.

This gives you a general idea of the quantity of each type of item you have.

Why does it matter how many pens and other items are on hand? You’ll know how much storage space you really need for these items.

Why storage space is important

Let’s say that you have 2 smaller desk drawers (among other drawers) and all of your pens, pencils, and other writing utensils fill up those 2 drawers completely to the point where you couldn’t add one more pen.

The issue here is you either easily make the drawer messy again or damage some of your supplies.

One thing I try to keep in mind when I am organizing is to leave room to grow.

So in this case, see if you can either use a larger drawer for this huge pen collection or think of another creative way to store these items that makes sense for you (or my favorite solution of all: declutter everything you don’t need!).

keep donate throw away piles
Don’t keep broken things. Make sure you’re creating your piles of items to keep, donate, or throw away in this whole process.

Do not keep broken items

I used to try to keep everything that I thought I could eventually fix, and doing so just led to extra clutter.

Guess what happened to my fixer-upper items that became clutter? I ended up throwing them out in the garbage later on down the line.

So while you sort items, create a trash pile (or donation pile).

organized drawer using containers
Using containers inside desk drawers or junk drawers to create homes helps to keep everything organized and easy to find.

Simple Step #4: Find a Home…

… for all the things that remain. This is the last step! This is the step that when you are finished makes you feel like a million dollars.

All that is left is to establish “homes” for everything. This ensures that everything gets put back in a dedicated place.

I use a variety of baskets, containers, and organizers in my home. Not all of my baskets and containers are new (see how I recycle the containers I already have).

I have a little stash of extras that I have collected. I keep all of my extra storage items in my basement. This way when I need a container or basket I can make a quick visit to the basement instead of a store.

Every now and then I end up needing to invest in a new storage item. I recommend using what makes you feel good about your space.

Extra Considerations

Don’t forget about the following:

  • Functionality: Put items where they are used frequently and easily accessible.
  • Create Compartments: Especially inside drawers, the organization is made possible by putting some of these baskets and containers inside, creating compartments.

>> You might also enjoy these home organization tips for an effortlessly organized home.

Now stand back and admire your accomplishment.

Then start enjoying living in your “new” relaxing space!



What’s the last area you organized in your home?


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3 thoughts on “4 simple steps to organize any space (even if you’re dealing with a great big mess!)”

  1. The kitchen was the last area uncluttered and cleaned. And next is to finish the command center in the kitchen. But by finishing that area I will be storing all the extra office supplies from my master bedroom/ office area. Once I get all the office supplies out of there I hope to get started on my bedroom. The master bedroom that is anyways.


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Welcome. I’m Sarah!


I’m the creator of Decluttering School (formerly known as Early Bird Mom), lover of organized spaces, encourager to women and mom to four boys. Click here to read more!

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