How to Organize Your Home for the Holidays – 5 Simple Steps


Wish you could figure out how to organize your home for the holidays?
This time of year the stress begins to build. The list of Holiday To Do’s can lead us down the quicksand of anxiety and overwhelm. You wonder how to organize your home for the holidays without losing your holiday spirit.

The key is to plan simply.

Here’s 5 simple steps for how to organize your home for the holidays.

1. Write it down

  • Get it out of your head and on paper
  • Use a notebook with a section for “Holiday”

Confession: I learned this the hard way. Every year I put 1000 mini lights on our fresh Christmas tree. A few years in, I learned some pro tips to make the lights and tree dazzle.

Trouble was, I would forget what those tips were some 345 days later. So I started taking notes and leaving those notes packed with my stored lights.

How to organize your home for the holidays Christmas tree with 100 mini lights

When its light stringing time, I have the reminder notes that get me off to the right start.

2. Run a mental movie

  • Imagine how you would love your home to look during the holiday season
  • Imagine being a guest and going through the activities
  • Write down specific tasks and notes to add to your Holiday Notebook.

Here’s a few examples to get you started.

  • Food you want to make
  • Outside lights checked
  • Rooms to tidy
  • Music compiled

3. Get the family involved early

Taking on too much and doing most of it yourself adds to holiday ho hum. Instead, gather the troops for holiday organizing. By putting things away now it will be easier to maintain in time for the holidays.

  • Delegate tasks and chores
  • Do a family early evening pickup
    • Each person puts away anything left out that is his or hers in a room or rooms
    • Next each person puts away three things that are the “room’s” (so not owned by any one person). They put these away whether he or she used them. This solves the “It wasn’t me!” in the case of kids insisting they did not leave out the TV remotes or milk in the kitchen.
  • Make a Holiday Job Jar
    • List each chore on paper – for a job well done:
      • Watch a family Christmas movie together
      • Allow kids to stay up 15 minutes extra on a school night
      • Bake holiday cookies

How to organize your home for the holidays. Child decorating sprinkles on homemade Christmas cookies

You don’t have to organize and prepare your whole house. Stick to the public rooms people will be in. Kids’ rooms can have doors closed.

4. Decorate early 

We put up our Christmas decorations the day after Thanksgiving. It means we can feel relaxed about decorating, plus we get to enjoy our decorations for over a month.

5. Simplify, Simplify, Simplify

Holiday time can be about impressing others or it can be about enjoying time with those we love.

  • Create a theme for family gifts
    • One year I gave soft scarves to my family and their significant others
  • Go the gift card route

How to organize your home for the holidays comes down to simplifying and planning.


BONUS: Think ahead for next year

  • Pack decorations labeling them by the room they go in for easy decorating next year.
    • We re-box or wrap all our decorations in tissue paper and affix a blue label: “Downstairs Bathroom”
    •  Dining room decorations are an orange label: “Dining Room”, etc.

Still feeling as though getting your home organized for the holidays is just too much?

I work virtually all over the world coaching people step-by-step to get organized for the holidays and beyond. Local? I do in-person organizing. I can help you enjoy and love the holidays again. Get a free consult for my Holiday Special: Holiday Happiness Made Simple.

I’m a mindset focused professional organizer. I help entrepreneurs, busy moms and attorney clients simplify their papers and spaces. Let me help you go from clutter bug to freedom.