Ideal garage organizing

Elvis Elvis

Some people shudder when they think of organizing their garage. Why does garage organizing seem to be more of a challenge than any other de-cluttering job?

Your garage is essentially a LARGE closet. It is used primarily for storage, as is a linen closet, kitchen cabinet or pantry, or any of the storage areas in your home. A garage is unique in that we demand more from it! Because it is one of the biggest “closets” in our home, a greater number of activities and equipment must be stored.

So, if your garage cabinets or outdoor storage shed are bursting at the seams, here’s what you can do.

Julie Morgenstern, an expert professional organizer often seen on Oprah, introduces a concept called the Kindergarten Model of organization. A kindergarten classroom is THE picture perfect model of organization. Think about it- with a quick blow of a whistle, 25 five year olds are able to put all of their blocks, books, clothes, snack, scissors, crayons, and musical instruments away, while we adults have a hard time cleaning up our dining room table?

What is the secret to its success? The room is divided into “activity zones”. There is a Reading zone, sleep zone, snack zone, music zone, and arts & crafts zone. Whatever supplies are needed for each activity exist in that activity’s zone. So it is easy to find the scissors, smocks, and paint-they are in the arts & crafts zone in a clearly labeled, well-defined location.

Apply the Kindergarten model to any room in your home and your have the #1 secret to everlasting organized living.

Let’s use the garage as an example. What are the typical activity zones of a garage- Sports, Car, Gardening, Pantry, spare household supplies, holiday, recycling, laundry, and off-season clothing. Each of those activities necessitate supplies. In your sports zone you may have: bikes, skates, hockey sticks, sports balls, camping gear, fishing gear, helmets, and knee pads. That’s a lot of supplies!

To make it easier on yourself, take out a piece of paper and draw three columns. Title the left-hand column: Activities. List all of the activity zones in the garage mentioned above. In the middle column, write down all of the supplies pertaining to each activity. So in the supply column next to “sports”, you may have: Bikes, skates, hockey sticks, sports balls, camping gear, fishing gear, helmets, knee pads.

Ideal garage organizing

Continue to fill out your chart with ALL of the activity zones and their related supplies. When you’re finished with these first two columns, think about where you will store these items (that’s the third column, “Storage Units”). Do you have an outdoor storage shed or storage pod you can use for your fishing gear? Perhaps you can use your garage cabinets for the car supplies? List your existing garage storage systems in the third column.

You may need to purchase other garage storage systems for things that have no home. Follow the link to the garage store at the bottom of this page for effective garage storage systems.

To review: sort and separate your garage into activity zones. Think of your garage as a kindergarten classroom. Keep its multi-purposes sorted and separated from each other. Purge what you don’t need and then decide on the right home for each individual activity zone.

If you appreciate the Kindergarten model of organization, you can experience garage organizing at its best… a multipurpose storage area with plenty of space for all of your needs!