September is National Preparedness Month! Are you ready for emergencies?

Being organized is key to being prepared for emergencies--are you ready?

Being organized is key to being prepared for emergencies–are you ready?

Emergencies and disasters can strike at any time, and being prepared not only helps keep your family or business safe and secure until the crisis passes, but also helps speed recovery afterward. For the tenth year as a national coalition member, NAPO has joined the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency‘s Ready campaign to help raise public awareness about emergency preparedness.

Each September, NAPO spotlights emergency preparedness, and how professional organizers can help individuals, families, groups and businesses get organized so they can be ready in case of natural or manmade disaster. Our members will be hosting local events in their communities to help people plan and prepare for emergencies, but we’re also featuring tips and advice here on our blog to help everyone be ready, keep safe, and recover if disaster strikes.

Click the smiling face below to see what our organizing pros recommend!

The 2014 Summer’s Best Organizing Tip is (drumroll, please) . . .


Finalist #2 – Recibir Huéspedes en Casa (Receiving Houseguests)*, from the NACHOrganiza blog!

A little planning and organization before your houseguests arrive is key to making them feel welcome and their stay comfortable and enjoyable for everyone.

Congratulations to Nacho Eguiarte for submitting the post that our blog visitors voted as their favorite advice of the summer! As the grand prize winner, Nacho will receive a gift certificate from Monkey Bars for his choice of selected garage storage rack systems.

Thanks to everyone who submitted helpful summer organizing advice through our link parties all summer long, and to everyone who voted for their favorite tips, and to EasilyDo and MonkeyBars for donating prizes!

*Post submitted in Spanish; to translate, copy the post URL and paste it into Google Translate.

Getting your week off to a good start – what to do on Monday mornings

Woman on phone working on laptop_Ambro

For most of us, weekends are never long enough, so when Monday morning rolls around, it can take some time to get in gear and start tackling the week’s tasks.  But successful people go into their Mondays with a game plan, and by sticking to the plan, they’re able to get more done not only on Monday, but throughout the week.  A recent article lists 15 things successful people do on Monday morning; which are already part of your routine?  Do you have your own system for making your workday productive?  Sound off in the comments!




It’s time to vote for the Best Organizing Tips of the Summer!

NAPO members have submitted great tips all summer on everything from hosting a backyard bash to having a successful garage sale, and now it’s time to pick the Best Organizing Tips of the Summer from our topic winners.

To review the four finalist blog posts, click the images below.  The post receiving the most votes before polling closes on August 27 will be declared the winner, and the author of the post will win a gift certificate for a garage organizing product from Monkey Bars Storage!

Finalist #1 – Organizing a Backyard Bash, from The Organized Mama blog

Finalist #2 – Recibir Huéspedes en Casa (Receiving Houseguests)*, from the NACHOrganiza blog

Finalist #3 – 5 Pasos Previos a las Vacaciones (5 Easy Steps Prior to Holidays)*, from the NACHOrganiza blog

Finalist #4 - Consideraciones A Tomar Para Tener Una Venta De Cochera Exitosa” (Considerations to Have a Successful Garage Sale)*, from the NACHOrganiza blog

Finalist #4 – Consideraciones A Tomar Para Tener Una Venta De Cochera Exitosa” (Considerations to Have a Successful Garage Sale)*, from the NACHOrganiza blog

*Post submitted in Spanish; to translate, copy the post URL and paste it into Google Translate.

Good luck to our finalists!

The best advice for a successful garage or yard sale is . . .

Once again, NAPO member Nacho Eguiarte of NACHOrganiza provided the advice voted the best by visitors to our blog.  “Consideraciones A Tomar Para Tener Una Venta De Cochera Exitosa” (Considerations to Have a Successful Garage Sale) received the most votes by a wide margin.  He recommends a mix of thoughtful planning, pricing, and products to make your next garage or yard sale more profitable.

Click the image below to read the winning post (it was submitted in Spanish; to translate, copy the post link and paste into Google Translate):

Woman holding box at garage sale

Congratulations, Nacho!  You’ll receive your prize soon!

That’s it for the weekly topics–thanks to everyone who submitted advice to this summer’s contest!  It’s almost time to choose from the winners and name the grand prize winner–Summer’s Best Organizing Tip!  Voting starts soon; stay tuned!

Why did you become a professional organizer? 6 stories

At NAPO, we’re often asked how people get into professional organizing, and the answers are as varied as our members. Some decided to follow their natural talent and passion for organizing; many chose it as a second act after a successful corporate career; others wanted to start their own businesses, and professional organizing was a good fit for an entrepreneurial venture; and for some, the organizing and productivity profession chose them.  Click each image below to learn what led six of our members to organizing–maybe you’ll recognize yourself in their stories!

Christine Daves credits joining NAPO and attending its annual conference with helping her dive into professional organizing.


Martha Dunlap’s passion for organizing became a career when she retired from teaching middle-school English.


Tamara Myles shares how she stumbled into her dream career as a productivity coach.


Michelle Powell’s passion for organizing and corporate burnout led to life as an entrepreneur.


After a severe car accident left her unable to work full-time, Debra Cabral needed a new career that allowed her to work a flexible schedule at her own comfort level.


Muffy Kaesberg and JoEllen Salkin took a team approach to starting their organizing business.


If you’re curious about becoming a professional organizer, visit NAPO’s website for more information.

Summer Organizing Tips Contest – Topic 4: Secrets to a Successful Garage/Yard Sale

Woman holding box at garage sale

Holding a garage or yard sale to get rid of unwanted, but usable, items that are cluttering your garage, attic, or other storage spaces is a great way to be kind to the planet by encouraging re-use, and you get to make a few bucks in the process! But preparing for the sale and keeping things organized while the sale is underway can be a challenge. What tips do NAPO professional organizers have for managing a garage or yard sale? Find out by clicking the link below!

Don’t forget to vote for your favorite post; the one with the most votes becomes the week’s winner, and moves on to the grand prize round to determine the summer’s best organizing advice! Click on the heart icon in the upper right corner of the thumbnail of your choice to vote!

The best advice for planning for a quick getaway is . . .


With so much great advice submitted  for planning a quick getaway, readers had lots of travel tips from which to choose , but “5 Pasos Previos a las Vacaciones” (5 Easy Steps Prior to Holidays) from NAPO member Nacho Eguiarte of NACHOrganiza received the most votes.  Servicing your car, using technology tools, setting a budget, and purchasing event or attraction tickets in advance are just some of the tips recommended to ensure a successful outing.

Click the image below to read the winning post (it was submitted in Spanish; to translate, copy the post link and paste into Google Translate):


A little planning before a day trip or weekend getaway lets you focus on the fun.

Congratulations, Nacho! Your winning post will also be included in the Best Organizing Tip of the Summer vote next month!

Because you submitted the winning post, you’ve won a Premium subscription from EasilyDo, the smart assistant app that gets the right information and gets things done! Manage all the information for your next trip with one convenient app that keeps track of your schedule, provides driving directions, reservations, tickets, and much more.

Voting on our next topic–which will be the last before we ask you to choose the Best Organizing Tip of the Summer–-begins August 11!

Get moving to increase work productivity

How often does this happen to you:  You’re sitting at your desk working on an important project. You’re focused and making good progress, but all of a sudden, you “hit a wall.” Your thoughts start to wander (“I could go for a cookie right about now”) and you’re overcome with the desire to check your e-mail.  You have a deadline, so you can’t afford to waste time, but your concentration is fading fast.  How can you get back on track?  Take a 5-minute break to get up and move. Simple exercises help get your blood flowing to deliver an extra shot of oxygen to your hard-working brain cells so you can power through to finish your task.  The next time you feel a slump coming on, try these stretches for a quick productivity pick-me-up!

Simple stretches can boost productivity and help you power through your daily work.


Garage storage options that really work

It’s mid-summer and you’ve probably been using your garage more than usual. Now that you’ve put it through its paces, is the way it’s organized working for you?  If  getting to the items you need involves moving things around or digging through piles, putting a system in place will not only keep your garage tidy, but it will also protect your tools and toys so you can use them for years to come. Whether your garage needs basic organizing or a complete makeover, these articles feature advice from NAPO professional organizers that will keep all your tools and toys organized and easy to access so you can spend your time enjoying them rather than looking for them!

Garage Storage for Kids' Gear

Garage Storage: Keep Kids’ Gear in Check

Storing Sports Gear in the Garage

Garage Sports Gear Storage

Lawn & garden tool storage from

Organize Lawn & Garden Tools in the Garage

Barry Izsak_Get gar-ranged_Costco Connection

Get ‘gar-ranged’