Love and Organizing

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February is the month of love — cards, flowers, and candy abound. However, you may not always feel the love if your significant other is disorganized. Here are some suggestions to help make life at home less stressful.

• Set aside an agreed-upon room or space where he can leave his things wherever he likes. If it bothers you, close the door or cover the space with a folding screen. In common areas where he usually spends most of his time place a container where he can drop his things. For example, in your bedroom place a laundry basket – no lid – where he gets dressed.

• Divide household chores into shorter time segments. If she can’t focus on a task that requires a big time commitment, break it up into smaller segments with breaks in between.

• Set aside a designated space for frequently used items such as keys, glasses, or remote controls. Have a space where she can leave her keys when she walks in the door. If there is no closet by the entrance, put a coat rack for her to put her purse, coat and shoes.

• Respect each other’s stuff. Don’t toss anything unless he says you can get rid of it.

• If he doesn’t listen to you when you talk to him, touch his shoulder or arm. Face him when you talk to him.

• Set aside time to talk about how your tasks are progressing. What has improved? What still needs attention? How can you work together to accomplish your organizing tasks?

• Finally, if you want hire an organizer to help her organize, check with her first. Hiring an organizer without your significant other’s knowledge can work against you. Your partner must be part of the decision.

Being organized doesn’t mean being perfect. It means coming up with a plan that works for the both of you.