Decluttering and organization are two words that go hand in hand. If you’ve been following the blog, I’m sure you’re aware that we decided to write up a list of all the books we wanted to read in 2018. A lot of them have to do with getting organized and decluttering, because we want to prepare ourselves as best as we can before we have to move into our Tiny House.
The third book of the year is Organize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every Personality by Katie & Kelly McMenamin. You can see by the title that this book is really taking on a different perspective in regards to organization. The fact that it was giving information on how to organize for different personality types is definitely what peaked my interested when I saw this book on the shelf at the library.
I brought the book home, along with many others, and immediately showed it to Max.
“Doesn’t that sound so interesting?” I asked him.
“Sure…” was his response.
He did not seem quite as impressed as I was. But after I finished reading it and explained the idea behind having different strategies for different personalities, I think he started to understand.
Max and I are two very different people. We have different interests, different friends, different hobbies. And on top of all of that, we have very different ways of cleaning and putting things away – by which I mean that I put everything away, while he sometimes puts things away. For a long time, I always believed that there was only one way to do things, and that way was the right way. If you’ve read ANYTHING about cleaning and organizing, you know that they all say the same thing. Make lists, make space, put things away, use containers, add new shelves, etc, etc. I love everything about this system because for me, it works perfectly. It adheres to my personality to a tee. But that doesn’t mean that it works for everyone, including Max.
The first thing you need to do when reading this book is to take the little personality quiz. I actually did this with a friend afterwards, to see if she thought it reflected her personality, and we both agreed whole heartedly.
The authors divided personality types in 8 different categories. The main categories being Classic, Fun, Smart, and Organic. Then you proceed to figure out the subcategory of your personality, which can lead to Classic Structure, Classic Freedom (that’s me!), Fun Structure, Fun Freedom (that’s Max), Organic Structure, Organic Freedom, Smart Structure, and Smart Freedom.
I won’t go into detail about all these different categories – for that you’ll have to pick up the book yourself. I’ll simply mention that reading about the different personality types is an important part of the book, and it can help you better understand why some family members don’t comply when you implement a new organizing method in your household.
Because this book is divided into section for each personality type, it’s an interesting book layout that lets you skip ahead. Each chapter is based on a specific room in the household, beginning with some universal solutions you can implement to better organize that area. The list of solutions is then broken down into detailed paragraphs, giving suggestions on how to make them happen. One thing I particularly like is what comes next – two images, a sort of “before” and “after” layout with information on what doesn’t work VS what you should be doing instead.
Then comes the more in depth information by personality type. Here, the author suggests method to declutter, clean and organize according to what would work best for you. For example, as a Classic Freedom, I like my things to be hidden and out of sights. I like for things to be organized with like items. Therefor, a good organizational method for me is to buy bins or baskets and write labels out so that the same thing always goes in the same place, regardless of who is picking up. As for Max, who is a Fun Freedom, he has a need to have things within reach. To compromise, we organize everything neatly, but keep the things we use most nearby.
I think the only downside to this book – which is not necessarily a downsize for most people – is how often it encourages you to buy bins and storage products. After having finished the book, I realized that this book certainly focuses on organizing more so than decluttering. For us, that’s not as practical, because we want to reduce the amount of stuff we own before we start organizing it. But if you’re not looking to downsize or reduce your clutter, for whatever reason that may be, then everything about this book is perfect for you.
Organize Your Way: Simple Strategies for Every Personality
Katie McMenamin & Kelly McMenamin
Highly recommended for anyone looking to organize their home