Organizing your home is usually that thing on to your to-do list that somehow never gets done. Right before the holidays can be the best time to get organized, since you’ll probably be inundating your home with new treasures and having plenty of guests over. If you’re really serious about de-cluttering your home and getting organized, it’s really not as hard as you may think; all it takes is some time and dedication, and maybe some creative thinking.

First and foremost, you’ll want to get rid of stuff you don’t need anymore. Be liberal, and don’t hold on to things you don’t need. With holiday time here again, now is a great time to donate stuff to charity. Whether you’re cleaning out your closet or don’t ride your bike anymore, many charities are in need of things at this time of year. You’ll be downsizing yourself, while doing a good deed.

If there are things that take up a lot of space but you feel like you can’t get rid of them, opt to rent a storage-unit. Find a Manhattan Mini Storage location close to your home or apartment where you can store away some space-consuming things. Even just renting a storage-unit for the holidays to make some more room in your home for hosting could be a great idea.

Once you’ve gotten rid of a lot of things that were cluttering up your home, you should sit down and make a plan on what it is you want to accomplish and how it is you’re going to do that. Do you want to organize all your paper files, or do you want to reorganize your kitchen cabinets? Do you want to do both, and more? Make a plan so it’s easy to see what you have accomplished, and what still needs to be done.

After you’ve defined what it is that needs to be organized, set time goals. You know yourself the best, so decide in what way you’ll be most efficient to get everything done in time. You might choose to organize for one hour a day for two weeks, or spend three days in a row working the entire afternoon. Don’t just putter around though, stick to a certain area as defined in your plan so you don’t get sidetracked and end up only getting a little bit of work done. Stick to one area until it’s done, and you’ll find that you are much more efficient at organizing.

When you start organizing your house, do it room by room and section by section. If you spend most of your time in the living room, start there. That way when it’s finished you’ll see how organized it is and be inspired to work in other areas of your home.

After you’ve successfully organized everything that needed to be organized, be sure you never let it get that bad again. Spend time each week to ensure that your home stays as organized as it is now, or all of your hard work will have gone to waste!