The 80/20 Organizing Rule – Nikki Kinzer

We have entered into the fall season!  I absolutely love the change of seasons!  The weekend prior to school starting, I was nesting.  It reminded me of when I was pregnant and waiting for the baby to come!  Instead of preparing for a new baby, I was running around preparing and organizing for the new school year!  I was organizing everything from the pantry to the garage!  It felt great to have a fresh start to the new season.

As I was sorting and purging, I often thought about the 80/20 organizing rule.  If you have not heard of it, it is basically the theory that on average we only use 20% of what we own. The other 80% sits for “someday” and is taking up valuable space!

The 80/20 rule can apply to almost anything you own.

For clothing, the theory states, we wear 20% of our clothes, 80% of the time.  The 20% are your favorites, the clothes being worn on a weekly basis.  The other items may be for a special occasion or seasonal clothing.  But I wonder how many of us have clothes in our closets just hanging for “someday”?

The 80/20 rule can apply to your filing system.  On average we only retrieve 20% of the papers we file.  If you are not regularly purging your files, you can see how paper can become a problem for many of us.  If you are keeping too much, it will be harder to find of what you need, when you need it!

I can think of many other examples where this rule could apply in your home.  How many shoes do you own vs. do you wear?  How many coffee cups do you have?  We could go on and on.

My challenge for you this month is to take some time to go through your closets and cupboards, oh yes and your filing system, and think about this 80/20 rule.   Challenge yourself to make some hard decisions and really think about what’s being used and is needed and what is just taking up space for “someday”.

If you get stuck, remember the sorting questions from last month’s post, to help guide you in your decision-making!

Good Luck!

Happy Organizing!

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