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Five Ways to Organize for Free

Junk It

While it might pain you to throw out those old sneakers you've stomped around in for years, let's face it -- they've seen better days. And there's a chance you might find a use one day for that stack of two-decade-old magazines, but be honest -- you probably won't.

These excess possessions can all get in the way of an organizational scheme, so take a closer look at what you're holding onto. When trying to decide what gets the ax, consider when you last used each object. If the answer is "never", "can't remember" or "not within the past year,"this could be a prime candidate for the trashcan. If the answer is more favorable, it could mean a more positive prognosis.

Making tough decisions like these is the first step to organizing. And not only does it cost you nothing but a little ownership anguish, it can even put a bit of money back in your pocket. While you might never again sit down at a typewriter or wear maternity clothes, there's a good chance someone else might have use for these sorts of items. If a garage sale isn't appealing, there's always the option to donate at your local charity or post on Craig's List ( or the Freecycle Network (