Organizing Tip: How to Organize a Junk Drawer

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Do you have a junk drawer at home or the office?How to Organize a Junk Drawer

You know, it’s that catch-all place for those odds and ends, bits and bobs and other strange items you can’t immediately identify on first glance.

If you’re tired of fussing and fighting over all those random objects to find what you need, you’re in luck!

In this post I offer a few tips to help you get your junk drawer organized and under control.

Give the junk drawer a better purpose.

Junk drawers don’t necessarily start off as junk drawers; they simply start off as empty drawers without a specific function.

Instead of continuing to identify your junk drawer as “the junk drawer,” why not take back your space by giving the drawer a specific purpose and use?

Define how you are going to specifically use your drawer.

For example, if you comb through your drawer you might find you’ve got a majority of chargers for different electronic devices or a lot of office supplies.

As such, you might decide to convert the drawer to store only those items.

Create dividers to house similar items.

One of the big problems with junk drawers is that items are all jumbled up. Make things easier for yourself by containing similar items within dividers. This works best after you’ve emptied the drawer, sorted like items with like and disposed of any obvious trash. You can purchase drawer organizers for this purpose or recycle items you have around the house such as using short and/or shallow boxes and containers to line the inside of the drawer. If you really want to be resourceful, you could construct your own custom dividers using cardboard, duct tape and a little bit of imagination and creativity.

Actively label new drawer items.

If you’re going to drop something into your drawer for storage and it’s not immediately clear what that item is (yet another black charging cord anyone?) at least consider giving your future self a helping hand! Keep a box of clear zippered bags, masking tape and a black permanent marker nearby or in the drawer itself so you can quickly and easily label items. This way, when you open the drawer you’ll know exactly what items are located inside.

Stop confusing the junk drawer with the garbage can.

Lastly, an easy way to stop junk from entering your newly cleared drawer is to simply stop confusing it with the garbage can. It’s not the garbage can, it’s a drawer. Maybe junk drawers are connected to garbage cans in Mars or Pluto, but here on planet Earth they are not (oh, well). The next time you feel yourself reaching for the drawer think about: 1) whether you actually need to keep the item and 2) where the optimal storage location for said item might be in your home or office.

How about you? What do you dislike the most about your junk drawer? The disorganization or perhaps it’s because you have a junk drawer in the first place? Join in the conversation and leave a comment below!

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Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.