My Problem with Storage and Organization Magazines

Better Homes & Gardens Storage IssueI'm a sucker for a magazine about storage and organization. There's just something so irresistable about the promise of all of those storage ideas and organization tips! Flipping through it in the checkout like isn't enough...I have to pick it up and buy it. I've tried downloading emagazine versions before, but turning the real paper pages of the printed magazine is much more fulfilling. Of course they are filled with interesting tips and images of beautiful rooms, and there is a lot of practical stuff in there that you can try on your own. I feel like there's a problem with these magazines, though.

While the rooms and people and photos are real (I think?), they are for a magazine. It's not that different from any other magazine, really. They depict what someone considers the ideal. Professional photographers spend time getting the lighting just right and taking the shot from a perfect angle. I don't know if they Photoshop them a la that image of Kim Kardashian and her bikini bod. Maybe they do, maybe they don't. The point is, even for a person who is skilled at organizing and making spaces look put together, those magazines can be so discouraging.

What usually gets to me the most is the laundry rooms. I don't have 100 square feet for my laundry room, and it can be very disheartening to look at the perfectly organized, cabineted (is that even a word?) space with two dryers, a sink for hand-washing delicates, and hanging space that rivals a master bedroom closet. Did I mention the sink?!?! Of course, coveting a walk-in closet big enough to require a chaise lounge and a crystal chandelier isn't all that unusual either.

When you're a busy professional or parents of three just trying to keep up with your kiddos, you might feel like your home will never look like that, so you figure why bother at all? Just like you don't have to look like a cover model to feel (and BE) beautiful, the fact that your house is not magazine-ready doesn't mean that you can't get (and BE) organized. The key is that you find what works and what makes you comfortable and happy in your home.

There's nothing wrong with picking up that magazine if you want ideas or you like to look at other people's organizational masterpieces. It's even okay if you find yourself a little envious of all of those beautiful spaces. But know that even though you may never have that much space or the ability to purchase all those fancy shelves and storage boxes, you can still find ways to organize your home and present it in a way you can be proud of!

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