Lifestyle Organization

18+ Ways to Get More Organized in 2018

How’s everyone’s 2018 going so far?! Have y’all survived the first couple days? I always find this week to be a tad overwhelming slash also pretty motivating. I’ve been spending a lot of time at home assessing the last year, my goals for the upcoming, and getting my house in order – and getting organized always makes me feel better like ASAP. Since I’m sure I’m not the only person trying to get organized at the moment, I thought I’d put together 18 ways I’m getting my life together in the form organization. These lists always scare me at first, but then once I start actually doing the tasks, I find it all pretty therapeutic. I promise the ones below are simple enough and will make your year feel off to a great start!

how to organize your pantry - pantry organization tips

Organize your garage/pantry/closet/bathroom

Mine has been a hot mess since I moved into my house, so 2018 is the year of a clean garage lol, but for real! I had a guy friend suggest hanging sturdy racks on our ceiling since we lack floor space and the garage is pretty small. So instead of having stuff lying all around my car, I’m installing racks on the ceiling and side walls to host things like luggage, summer clothing, tools, etc. Does it officially mean I’m an adult if this excites me?!

Or how about organizing your closet?! Or your pantry? Slash under the sink? Or how about your bathroom?! Maybe tackle whichever area needs is screaming for your attention the most! It will make you feel so much better. Could you devote one Saturday to doing this?!

One in, one out rule

I know this is a common rule, but it’s a great reminder. Essentially, every time you bring something new into your house, you should be getting rid of something, too – so that you don’t end up with too much stuff. Of course you can’t live like this with every single purchase, but it’s a good thing to keep in mind. If you buy a new pair of sweats, you can probably get rid of an old pair (slash why you bought the new ones in the first place).

Take things out of the packaging ASAP

Y’all know when you go to the store and come home with all these boxes of backup supplies, or things that are waiting to be used? Instead of keeping them in their packaging or box, take them out right away and get rid of the package. This will not only save you space, but you’ll have less clutter of packaging and all that stuff in your closets. One less thing to do later, too!

Use Dashlane for Passwords

If I have to remember one more password, I’ll scream. Which is why I’ve started using something called Dashlane. It basically stores all your passwords for you, and you just have to remember that ONE password to login to LassPass. Then, everything auto populates when you go on an app or whatever. Genius!

Revamp your closet

Even if you don’t have space to have the biggest, fanciest closet ever, it’s smart to keep it organized. Buy nice hangers so that things stay put, and then take the time to make sure everything is right side out, hanging the same direction, and even in different sections depending on what the item is. Go one step further and color coordinate each section and I guarantee it’ll make getting dressed WAY faster this year.

Clean your makeup brushes

All of them, this week! Set a reminder on your phone to do this 2x a month. I’ve heard using baby shampoo is great! And that this tool is amazing to use for doing it.

Create drop zones

Does anyone else have a chair in their room that is constantly full of clothes hanging over it? And random stuff? Guilty! I’ve been reading about the idea of “drop zones,” and I LOVE it. Basically, the idea is to add dedicated holders to areas in your home that you tend to drop things or let them pile up. So, for me, this means a basket in my closet for dry cleaning (separate than dirty clothes), a return basket in my room for stuff to take back, a cute separator by the front door for mail for my roommates, etc. Find the trouble zones in your home and buy containers/boxes/baskets accordingly.

Keep a bag of essentials in your purse

If you’re anything like me, you probably change up your bag or purse often. And instead of forgetting your Starbucks card and chapstick in your other purse one more time, keep everything you want to transfer in one smaller bag. That way, you can simply grab the small bag as you move purses, without having to grab each item separately. I talked about it in my stories yesterday, but I use these clear bags I found a few months ago and I’m obsessed with them!

2-min rule – At the end of each day, spend two minutes in each room of your house tidying it. For me, that’s my desk area (putting back mugs, clearing papers), the kitchen (cleaning up my dinner or plates from earlier in the day), and living room (folding the blankets, putting remotes back, etc). Makes such a difference to come into tidy rooms in the morning!

Use a budgeting app

Mint is one of my faves! Get all your bills and finances in one place while organizing your budget.

Monthly clean out day

Dedicate one morning a month to cleaning up your life. That means going through your closet, your fridge, bringing returns to your car, making a list of things you need from Target, going through your phone and computer, etc. It feels SO freakin’ amazing, and I like to do this listening to a favorite podcast so that it’s enjoyable.

Bins in fridge/freezer

Speaking of going through your fridge, consider using plastic bins to store things (especially if your fridge lacks natural organization or drawer space). Even taking eggs out and placing them in a glass bin, or putting all fruit in one makes a big difference (you can just grab the bin and bring it out and actually see what you have). Do the same thing in your freezer to take advantage of limited space.

Speaking of organizing the fridge, I actually really want to find someone who can help me do a post on this for you, so we can BOTH learn tricks for organizing the fridge. Would y’all be interested in that? Maybe I could mention it on stories and see if there’s anyone in the Dallas area that would be willing to collaborate.

Simplify (Ugh, SO HARD I know)

Whenever you can this year, think of ways to simplify your life. Use one notepad instead of 10 around the house. Get rid of the 23494792 pens in your drawer and pick your favorite 3. Go through your phone contact list and get rid of people you no longer talk to. Clean out your Insta feed. Do one thing at a time, and so forth. It’s a lot easier to organize your life when things are simple to start.

Unroll Me slash Unsubscribe

It’s not very expensive and it lets you get rid of all junk mail from your inbox – once and for all. Priceless IMO! Check it out at

Clean out your Inbox (in general)

Can you try and get your inbox to zero? I know that might sound unattainable but think of how much more productive you’d be if you were able to respond/manage your emails in just-in-time (batch) manner? Wouldn’t that be SO amazing!? Actually, inbox management is something is REALLY struggle with. Even though I’m encouraging you to do it, I’d love to hear if any of you have mastered HOW to do this well? I would LOVE to hear any tips you may have! or resources?!

Do things now (easier said than done, I know)

Instead of putting things off until later in the day, week, month, year, just get stuff done! Organize that sock drawer that drives you crazy. Make the phone calls and book the appts. Just do it when you think of it, or first thing in the day.

Emergency kit

With all the natural disasters in 2017, I felt an intense need to create an emergency pack that’s all in one place. Instead of having a flash light in one spot, extra food in another, I put it all in a backpack and placed it in the closet by my front door.

Consider white boards

I finally bought myself a snazzy white board calendar and it’s been a godsend. Not only can I write out thoughts on there, but seeing my week big and bold in my home really helps. It’s also where I can add house organization chores like “check medicine expiration dates” 1x a month, or that we need to get something fixed. Especially if you live with other people, it’s great for getting everyone on the same page.


One of my biggest goals for 2017 was to delegate, and I’ve realized that by taking things off my plate, I’m much more organized in general. Think of the tasks that weigh you down or that you’re not good at organizing, and delegate them.

OK that’s all! This post seriously excites and motivates me, so I hope it provides the same #feels for y’all. How are you organizing things slash your life to start 2018? Let me know!

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  • Reply
    Amy Privett
    January 7, 2018 at 5:56 pm

    Organization has been my forte for many years now, lucky me lol. I’m glad to see that many tips you recommend, I also do on a regular basis. For me, I feel so much better mentally when “life” is organized. I’m going to try out Mint for budgeting. I like the variety of topics & enjoy your blog, keep up the good work!!

  • Reply
    January 7, 2018 at 12:28 pm

    Hi!! Would love any tips you have on organization. From fridge, to pantry, to your closet but also would LOVE to read about how you organize your bathroom stuff. Makeup and all. I’m trying to tackle that and feel overwhelmed… :)

  • Reply
    January 6, 2018 at 11:55 am

    How do you and your roommates divi up your pantry? I mean, your pantry is gorge but it looks like it’s for a family not a sectioned off pantry for roommates.

  • Reply
    Weekend Reading
    January 6, 2018 at 4:26 am

    […] BrightonTheDay talks about how to get organized. […]

  • Reply
    January 5, 2018 at 11:22 pm

    Amy at FriEdTechnology has the be best youtube series called Smarter Gmail on how to maintain that goal of inbox zero.

  • Reply
    Jennifer Hadley
    January 5, 2018 at 12:18 pm sells your information to 3rd party people. I’d recommend not using it.

  • Reply
    The December Dame
    January 5, 2018 at 8:00 am

    Yes to the fridge organization post!


  • Reply
    2018 Friday Finds #1 || Favorite Links on the Web — bows & sequins
    January 5, 2018 at 5:01 am

    […] 18+ Ways to Get Organized This Year […]

  • Reply
    January 4, 2018 at 3:02 pm

    Love this! Seems very doable and not overwhelming. Im a new reader and look forward to 2018.

  • Reply
    January 4, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    Yes please on the fridge organization post! I think that’ll help me waste less food too!!

    Do you steam or iron your clothes after you do laundry, and before you put them away in your closet? I really struggle with this. After I do laundry, I put the items that need to be steamed into a basked that I call “the basket of death”…because I never get around to it (more like laziness and I don’t want to do it), and it just piles up. That basket is constantly full! Ideally I would steam them right away and hang them in the closet, ready to be worn. Do you have a system?? Thanks!

  • Reply
    Alexis deZayas
    January 4, 2018 at 11:36 am

    Love the idea of the essentials bag for your purse and the drop zones! Going to have to think about where I need those!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 10:08 pm

    Yeh that would be nice Organization For the refrigerator

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 8:20 pm

    I didn’t know a thing like Dashlane existed!! This is the second month in a row I’ve forgotten my bank account password because I used my fingerprint on my old phone. Sigh. Thanks for the tip, Brighton!!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 8:12 pm

    Great post and very motivating! For me, it’s tackling my closet (albeit small but still chaotic!) and my email inbox. I use Google’s new Inbox product which has been helpful to sort and prioritize messages (even add reminders to those that require action) but a 0 unread messages inbox would be…amazing!!!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    Yes! Everyone loves an organizational post!

    I have started tackling places such as my: kitchen drawers, pantry, and bathroom areas. I use multiple organization bins that I buy at some of the cheaper stores such as Dollar General – they are around $5 and get the job done great!

    I did get a lot of my organization tips from reading Emily Ley’s books on living a simplified life, as well as following her social media pages where she often has “simplified challenges” – her tips are very easy to relate to and do-able; definitely worth looking into!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 6:54 pm

    Yes! We all need a good organization post!

    I have started with my kitchen drawers/pantry, as well as my bathroom drawers. I buy a lot of the organizations bins from cheaper places like Dollar General and they work out great! I got the majority of my ideas and tips from reading Emily Ley’s books on simplify your life as well as following her simplified challenges on Instagram and Facebook.

    Her techniques and guidelines are definitely worth looking into!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 5:34 pm

    I heard the advice “touch it once” a couple years ago, and it really stuck with me. It just boils down to not putting anything off until later at all. The idea was if you act on everything as it comes you don’t waste the time by having to come back to it a second time. Of course you can’t 100% of the time, but if you have those three words always in the back of your mind it really helps! I feel like it applies to a few of these especially inbox and the just do it now one! For emails I used to let them pile up, but I’ve gotten a lot better about conquering that monster daily by just acting on each one as I read it instead of telling myself I’ll do it later.

    • Reply
      January 4, 2018 at 2:31 pm

      Also really helps with cleaning. If you take off a sweater and put it down on “the chair,” you’ll have to take it to its home later and spend mental energy on it twice. If you just make yourself put it away or in the dirty clothes immediately after taking it off instead of some other holding place you stay on top of things. I didn’t realize how hard this was (esp when your tired, etc.) but practice makes (kinda) perfect.

    • Reply
      January 4, 2018 at 6:53 pm

      Have y’all heard of the “5 second rule”? I just watched the TED talk on it and found it really interesting!

  • Reply
    Kaitlin Cuevas
    January 3, 2018 at 3:54 pm

    Yesssssss to a refrigerator / freezer organization post! Would LOOOOVEEE!!!!

  • Reply
    Melissa Klusek
    January 3, 2018 at 2:47 pm

    I love this! I always feel like I relate to organizational posts on a spiritual level haha We did a big clean out of closets and drawers this weekend (ah-mazing) and tonight I’m tackling our kitchen pantry and fridge! We live in a one bedroom apartment that’s not huge, but I still feel like we have too much stuff. We’re saving for a house and hoping to buy later this year, so I really want to have the least amount of stuff possible to move! I also really want to organize my phone so when I get a new one in a couple months everything is easy peasy to transfer and I only have the necessities. At the end of last year I got one notebook to keep a running to do list in instead of having six different pieces of paper in six different places! I bring that and my planner with me everywhere, and I love it! Next up to tackle is the insane amount of bags and purses I have! OH! And if delegating means you’re hiring for #teamBTD, please direct me to the application haha

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 2:02 pm

    Another awesomely helpful post! Ok, I want to do the whiteboard thing but where do you keep yours? I feel like they don’t go with my office decor but I still think I would use one. Maybe I should just get over it, or bedazzle it or something? LOL Thanks for always having great tips, Brighton. It’s why I love reading your blog over so many others. You have great fashion and style advice but also real life advice too. Love it and love you! :-)

    • Reply
      January 3, 2018 at 8:07 pm

      Agreed! Would love some suggestions on how to incorporate a whiteboard while still keeping my apartment aesthetically pleasing

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 11:40 am

    This post is so helpful and extremely motivating! I love all of them, but definitely need to work on budgeting more and getting rid of old boxes – but especially cleaning out my makeup brushes!


  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 11:40 am

    yes, yes, yes to the fridge organization post. I need that in my life. yesterday lolz.
    love these tips & happy new year!!

    • Reply
      Brighton Keller
      January 3, 2018 at 1:47 pm

      I am so excited to start working on that project! A clean fridge is a must. Right now I can’t even find my hummus!

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 9:45 am

    Love this post! You should def recommend where you buy your organization items. & where we can find like ones 🙌🏻

  • Reply
    Desiree | Beautifully Seaside
    January 3, 2018 at 7:44 am

    Great tips! I’m about to take down my Christmas and really want to organize my ornanments better than I have in the past! By the way, I love your pantry! Enjoy and have a beautiful new year! XO, Desiree

  • Reply
    January 3, 2018 at 6:29 am

    You have such a lovely pantry.

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