Peter Walsh from TLC's hit series Clean Sweep has written a book on de-cluttering your home. It's called It's All Too Much - An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life With Less Stuff.
If clutter is taking over your life, then this book is a must-read. Peter Walsh is the master at getting people to declutter by focusing on what things *actually* matter. Part professional organizer, part psychologist -- it's the reason we all love watching his show!
His advice is so common sense and practical that there are a lot of "duh" moments. Things that make total sense once you've read them, you can't believe you didn't think of them yourself. That's the simple genius that is Peter Walsh.
In this book, Peter walks through your home room by room to show you how to prioritize, organize, and maintain it once you are done. The main question to ask of any room is "What function(s) should this room serve?" It is simply in answering this question that you are halfway done. For each room, he gives lots of specific examples of common (and uncommon) clutter problems he has helped people solve.
Second, he has a simple system for approaching each organizational task:
1) allocate space (according to the function(s) you want the room to serve)
2) reduce your stuff until it fits in that space
3) one-in-one out rule for new things
Some great nuggets from the book:
"Everything in your home is there with your permission."
"Imagine the life you want to live. Your stuff should support that life."
"Getting organized for the sake of getting organized is a waste of time. Getting organized because it helps you live a richer, less stressed, happier, and more focused life, now that's a goal worth pursuing." I *love* this. I think I have found my new mantra!
If you are already mostly organized, then this book is worth a quick read. There are some good tips and tricks in here that can help you fine-tune your home organization.
My favorite is the hanger system for determining which clothes you never wear. Start the year off with all your clothes on hangers that are hung with the hook facing out. Every time you wear something, return it to your closet with the hook facing in. At the end of the year, anything with the hook still facing out should be gotten rid of.
I am giving myself an exception on this one because I was pregnant last year. Just give me another year to get back into my skinny jeans...