You are not going to hear this from any other organizing experts so read carefully. I mean it, lean in - this is good. You don’t have to be a minimalist to be organized! You can be organized and have stuff! Isn’t that great news?

Now, here comes the catch: you have to love your stuff. Organizing your home then becomes a simple matter of deciding what you love most. Once you know what you love, you need to decide how it will function in your home. If you can’t find a function for the thing, you don’t love it enough. Let me repeat that okay? If you can’t find a function for the thing you love, you don’t love it enough to keep it.

For example, I love books. Voracious is the perfect word for the kind of reader I am because sometimes I feel like I’m consuming books instead of just reading them. So, it goes without saying that I have a lot of books. And I’ll get rid of them... when you can pry them from my cold, dead hands. Get the picture? I love books.

As my collection grows, so must my capacity to store them in my home. This means I have to get rid of other things I don’t love as much - like a stuffed animal collection or in my case, a spare bedroom. See how it works? If you love the spare bedroom or the stuffed animals more, then you have to get rid of some books. And let me just say this right now... if you love the books enough to put them in a box and keep them in storage... I’m not sure you really love the books. Get it?

I worked with one client (whose permission I have to share this) who owned a green sequined skirt from her performing days in her high school choir. Say what you want about the craziness of loving a green sequined, 15-year-old skirt. She really loved it. Her problem was finding a function for it in her home. Taking up a hanger and closet space was no longer an option because there were other things she loved more that needed hangers and closet space.

She loved it enough to be creative though and now that green skirt comes out every year as the family Christmas tree skirt. It’s a perfect solution. Green sequins are pretty stunning on a Christmas tree and her choir memories now have a place of honor. As a bonus, she could get rid of that other Christmas tree skirt that she never really liked and certainly never loved.

Another client loved pictures of her family (don’t we all?) but she had an excessive amount of them and didn’t like scrapbooking, or hiding them all in boxes. One of the creative ways she decided to use those pictures was by doing 11x17 layouts and then laminating them. Now she has the coolest placemats in the neighborhood and she still has those pictures she loves.

You can do this. Look around. What are the things you love? How are those things functioning in your home? Organizing will be a breeze now that you know what you love. Be creative about their function and, you’re good to go.