Six Organizing Systems Everyone Needs — System #3: Launch Pad

How well are your organizing systems working for you?

In the introduction to this series I shared the following:

What is a system?
What 6 organizing systems do I think everyone needs?
What 5 questions can you ask yourself to see if your systems are still working for you, or if they need tweaking?

Now let’s take a closer look at each system…

System #3:  Launch Pad

(a.k.a. Landing Strip, Staging Area)

WHO is coming and going from the house – You? Spouse? Kids? Roommate?

WHAT needs to go with you when you walk out the door – Purse/wallet, keys, phone, and sunglasses? Backpacks, homework and sack lunches? Errand list, library books to return, and packages to mail?

WHEN? This one’s easy: When you leave the home, and immediately upon your return. And all day long, whenever you identify something you need to take with you next time you leave the home.

WHERE is a good place to deposit the things that you bring into the house, and to collect items that you will need next time you leave — An existing spot where everyone tends to dump their stuff? A new table or shelf just inside the door you use most often? Can backpacks be hung on an adjacent wall or in an adjacent closet? Do you need a basket, container, or hook for each person?

WHY do you need a Launch Pad? Because it is less stressful to have one place to collect the things that you will need to leave the house with. You will save time and eliminate the last-minute panic of having to hunt for them, and if you dump your purse, keys, sunglasses, etc. here routinely, you will always know where to find them!

What are your challenges and tips for keeping track of the things you need most often?

Please share in the comments below!

Next System: #4 Paper Flow

Previous System: #2 Doing Dishes

If you need help tweaking your systems, or implementing new ones, ask a friend or call a professional organizer.

Copyright 2010-2017 by Hazel Thornton, Organized For Life.
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  1. We used to have a rack for hanging keys by the door, but the keys left marks on the wall so we didn’t put it back up after we painted. Now we have a small basket on a table by the door for all our keys. It’s very handy and attractive enough that it looks okay.

    • Perfect example of a system that worked, more or less, that nevertheless needed to be tweaked because things change.

  2. For the first time in my life, I just successfully implemented a “Launch Pad!” I’d gotten pretty good at leaving my purse in approximately the same place but, for some reason, my keys could be anywhere, in any room, on any surface, or even inside something! Recently, however, I relocated a decorative dish that I own and love. It’s a small terra-cotta dish with dragonflies around the outside. It’s from the Arts and Crafts era. My keyfob and garage opener fit inside it perfectly. What I’m finding with lots of these systems/solutions is it has to involve something I really like a lot. This dish is beautiful and functional and I get excited about placing my keys and garage opener in it. It’s the little things!

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