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Readers share their best organizing tips

We asked readers to share their best organizing tips. Here are some of our favorites.

Every change of season I go through my house, and my rule is: Anything I didn’t wear, use or look at the year before goes to charity, including my “one day I’ll fit into this again” pants and my “want to cook more for my husband” pans.

Ana Montero, Silver Spring

Purge, purge, purge! Create a place where you can keep a box for items to be donated or recycled, and when it’s full, drop it off to the appropriate facility.

Janice Redden, Hughesville

Turn all your clothes hangers to face the opposite way you usually hang them. As you wear each item, turn the hanger back around. At the end of six months, look at the items you have worn and get rid of the rest. Then, try to stick to this rule: Every time you buy a new article of clothing, another one in your closet has to go.

Susan Unger, Vienna

Sort the mail at your recycling bin. Discard all return envelopes, inserts and catalogues. You’ll be amazed how little winds up crossing the threshold.

Barbi Regan, Oak Hill

Have the proper mind-set for getting rid of items you don’t need. When I look at something I know I should donate, I remind myself that someone else will get joy from it and I’ve already gotten so much pleasure from it.

Dottie Brown, New Castle, Pa.

Every time my adult daughter comes home to visit, I send some of her stuff back with her.

Cathy Lavin, Alexandria

Accumulating things for donation pickups was never that helpful (too much time to reconsider, and I had to have a collection place). With Freecycle, I can list an item the moment I find it, and it’s usually gone within hours.

Jo Ann Staebler, Manassas

Completely empty the space you want to organize, whether it be a drawer, closet or garage, and start from there.

Karen Murley, Bethesda

Bring used electronics to be recycled and boxes of papers that need to be shredded to monthly computer recycling shredding events held each month in Chantilly. See www.pcrecycler.net for more information.

Jackie Johnson, Herndon

More about organizing: How to get organized in 20 minutes Five things you may not know about organizing

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