Optimising your storage: How to organise your unit like Marie Kondo

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Let’s face it: pretty much everyone has heard of Marie Kondo. Her strict organisation routine has changed people’s lives, transforming their home from a hoarder’s paradise to – well, just paradise. Marie’s KonMari method has been heavily praised since the release of her Netflix show, with just about everyone getting stuck into a deep home cleanse.

Clutter doesn’t just build up in the home though, it’s easy to let your vehicles and units get unorganised when you aren’t keeping on top of things. Whether you use a storage unit for business or personal use, you’ll want to keep it in top-notch order. Take a leaf out of the queen of tidying’s book with our tips to organising your storage unit like Marie Kondo.

The vertical trick
Just because something is out of the home and out of sight, doesn’t mean it should be messy or unorganised. Having an item in storage suggests it’s valuable and needed at a later date, so why leave it under a pile of other random pieces?

One of Marie Kondo’s top tips is standing things vertically or on their side rather than stacking one on top of the other as most people do. Using this technique allows you to make the most out of your space as well as ensuring you can see what everything is in an instant.

While Marie uses this mainly for clothes, you’d be surprised by just how much space you can clear by standing general items vertically. No more rummaging through piles of unsorted bits and bobs when you use Marie’s method!

Organising by category
Another one of Marie’s celebrated techniques is tidying by category rather than by room, which is an easy rule to apply when sorting a storage unit.

Rather than cleaning the entire unit at once, do so one category at a time to help you keep track of everything and ensuring it’s all in the same place. For example, if you have a collection of DVDs in multiple boxes around the unit, gather and organise them at once before moving on to something else.

Marie gives her main categories as: clothes, books, papers/documents, sentimental and, finally, Komono (miscellaneous items). She also recommends sorting them in this order to ease you into the organisation process, as the sentimental stuff is often the hardest to purge. This list may vary depending on what's in your storage unit, so it may be worth making a list of your own categories before you start.

If you’re starting fresh with a new unit, pack all of your boxes by category and label them clearly from the get-go; this way, you’ll know exactly where everything is.

Use shoeboxes
Most people have some old shoeboxes lying around the house, so why not reuse them? They’re small enough to slot into a multitude of places and act as dividers when used without a lid, preventing your belongings from getting mixed up. This works best in drawers but can be used in anything from larger storage containers and shelving units. Alternatively, you can jazz them up and turn them into unique eco-friendly storage containers. Not only will they improve the organisation of your unit, but it’ll also give the aesthetic a boost too.

As previously mentioned, labelling your boxes makes a big difference when it comes to organisation. If you don’t want to ruin the look of your storage boxes, you can tape a note to the lid of the box or design an equally as pretty sticker to go on the side.

Respect your things
It may sound bizarre, but personifying your things and considering their ‘feelings’ is one of Marie’s most talked about methods. Why? Applying feelings to personal belongings helps with organisation as it makes you realise what a bad condition they’re kept in.

Leaving clothes crumpled up on the floor and shoving old mementoes into boxes
haphazardly is something everyone is guilty of. By imagining how your items would feel if they could, you start feeling guilty about the sorry state you’ve left them in. If this is something you can’t quite get your head around, just consider how likely you’d be to use the item if it was organised nicely.

Try out these tips for your storage unit to make it a place that ‘brings you joy’ in the words of Marie Kondo.