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** READER QUESTION ** Help, theres so much to do…

Reader question on Organise My House - Advice and Tips to get organisedI had an email the other day from a lovely lady (thank you “D” ).

She is struggling with where to start and what to do for the best – and in general feels that she has lost the way a bit.

My house is a mess, in fact my whole life is a mess. I have lost the will and am not keeping up with anything. I start writing it all down and then allotting time to it, but that is as far as I have got. Maybe I’m afraid of not keeping to the schedule and feeling like a failure. There is just so much to do. Do you have any tips or advice?

My answer is as follows – I really hope that it helps you as well if you are feeling the same.


Thanks so much for getting in touch, its good to hear from you , and I’m so sorry that you are feeling this way about your home.
I think it may be a mix of a couple of reasons – overwhelm and procrastination.
When your home feels out of control its really hard to decide where to start first, so you end up moving around the house thinking about what has to be done and getting stressed and depressed very quickly.
I have been there (and still get there from time to time – there are always times when things get on top of us all – even the most organised people have emergencies and times that things are out of their control).
The trick I would try is to organise as you go.
Wherever you end up on day one (now), start there.
It all needs doing at some point, so wherever you start is a good place – its the starting that counts.
Say to yourself that you will spend 15 minutes only doing an organising task (whether its filling a bag with rubbish, charity stuff etc…. or cleaning a cupboard, or filing some documents) 15 minutes seems doable to most people – and not too overwhelming.
I set the timer on my kitchen oven so that I know I won’t go over the time, and it sometimes helps to have a sense of urgency for these minutes so you get as much done as you can racing against the clock.
A funny thing usually happens at this point though – you will have got over the massive hurdle of getting started, and actually more than likely will want to carry on, at least to ensure that what you have started gets finished.
It feels great to finally be able to tick something off the list, and it can be a great motivator.
Try the 15 minute trick and see how you go.
Please don’t worry about scheduling in things as yet – simply getting started and actually doing things will help to keep you going, as you will instantly see a change in your home – a little a day really does add up very quickly and makes all the difference – you will get there.


help theres so much to do - organising advice and tipsDo you have any issues with getting organised? I’d love to help – either leave a comment below or send an email.

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9 Responses to ** READER QUESTION ** Help, theres so much to do…

  1. Sharon Jun 11, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    Rebecca, I always found that giving the little ones age-appropriate tasks, like folding washcloths for the 3-year-old and towels for the 5-year-old, helps them get involved in the cleaning and organizing process.

    Bronwyn, I sometimes get overwhelmed too, so I go back to my plan of one room per day. Kitchen Monday, bathroom Tuesday, etc. If I can’t finish a room in a day, I carry it over, but usually I get going and finish.

    I hope this helps! Don’t be so tough on yourselves, homes are for living in, not displaying like museums. It should be healthy, but beyond that don’t stress yourself out so much about it. If anyone who comes in doesn’t like your housekeeping, they can leave. That’s my philosophy. 🙂

    • Chrissy Halton Jun 11, 2014 at 10:02 pm #

      Great answers Sharon – thanks so much for taking the time to reply x

  2. Rebecca Vowles Dec 30, 2013 at 10:13 am #

    Hi, just wondering if you have any top tips with regards to keeping the house tidy and organised with 2 little ones – age 5 and 3! Seem to get tidy and organised then turn round and you are back to square 1! Plus I work full time! Any top tips gratefully received!


    • Chrissy Halton Dec 31, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

      Hi Rebecca – great question – I shall add a new post in the near future to answer it for you in detail – thanks for your comment and happy new year!

  3. BronwynK Nov 8, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

    I started using the 15 minute trick and doing a few dishes while I wait for my oatmeal to cook or dinner to cook. It’s helping, especially the depression part. Once the kitchen is done, I’m baking cookies! I don’t know the last time I did that. 🙂

    Thank you, Chrissy!

    • organisemyhouse Nov 8, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

      Hi Bronwyn – thanks for your message – thats absolutely fantastic! I am so pleased its helping you, and I hope the cookies go down well! ;o)

  4. BronwynK Nov 4, 2013 at 1:37 pm #

    Thank you to both of you. It’s nice to know I’m not alone. I have the same problem but when I decide I’m going to start I get so overwhelmed it brings me to tears and I can’t seem to force myself to start then. The mess is affecting my depression and daily life. I don’t know the last time we had people over to visit. It’s frustrating.

    I’m going to try the 15 minute timer trick. Hopefully, it will get things going.

    • organisemyhouse Nov 4, 2013 at 2:27 pm #

      Hi Bronwyn,
      Thanks for your comment, I am really sorry that you feel like this, and really hope that some of the tips (including the 15 minute timer) will help you to overcome that horrible feeling of overwhelm.
      Take things a little at a time and they will get done in the end.
      Chrissy x

  5. Dan Read Nov 1, 2013 at 9:52 am #

    Love the idea of racing against the clock. Found that useful in the past, and when the timer goes off, treat yourself to a cup of tea, and if the last 15 minutes was productive, do it again…

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