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The 8 Minute Organizer: Easy Solutions to Simplify Your Life in Your Spare Time

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Whether you are busy dealing with a demanding job, raising kids, or coping with illness, simply finding the time to get organized can be a challenge. The 8-Minute Organizer to the rescue!Regina Leeds shows how anyone can organize their home with just a few minutes each day. She has tailored her magic formula (eliminate, categorize, organize) so that readers can work in sho Whether you are busy dealing with a demanding job, raising kids, or coping with illness, simply finding the time to get organized can be a challenge. The 8-Minute Organizer to the rescue!Regina Leeds shows how anyone can organize their home with just a few minutes each day. She has tailored her magic formula (eliminate, categorize, organize) so that readers can work in short, effective increments and complete small projects that add up to big progress. The book includes hundreds of systems and tricks--from rapid closet rehab to tackling junk drawers, clutter-busting a room to setting up a mail system. Leeds also offers quick but important daily routines (making the bed), periodic tasks (checking the smoke detector), and fun projects (creating a dream board) to keep up the momentum.


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Whether you are busy dealing with a demanding job, raising kids, or coping with illness, simply finding the time to get organized can be a challenge. The 8-Minute Organizer to the rescue!Regina Leeds shows how anyone can organize their home with just a few minutes each day. She has tailored her magic formula (eliminate, categorize, organize) so that readers can work in sho Whether you are busy dealing with a demanding job, raising kids, or coping with illness, simply finding the time to get organized can be a challenge. The 8-Minute Organizer to the rescue!Regina Leeds shows how anyone can organize their home with just a few minutes each day. She has tailored her magic formula (eliminate, categorize, organize) so that readers can work in short, effective increments and complete small projects that add up to big progress. The book includes hundreds of systems and tricks--from rapid closet rehab to tackling junk drawers, clutter-busting a room to setting up a mail system. Leeds also offers quick but important daily routines (making the bed), periodic tasks (checking the smoke detector), and fun projects (creating a dream board) to keep up the momentum.

30 review for The 8 Minute Organizer: Easy Solutions to Simplify Your Life in Your Spare Time

  1. 5 out of 5

    Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller

    This is a beginners book for the inherent organizer who just can’t seem to find the time to get their shit together (I can relate). Offering bite-sized projects, it’s aim is to get you to chip away at the clutter in your life and build a home you can feel zen in. The projects were practical and specific, taking the guesswork out of where to start in your home. I appreciated that the author seems to have a good grasp on the psychology of organizing and concepts beyond the scope of the book on how t This is a beginners book for the inherent organizer who just can’t seem to find the time to get their shit together (I can relate). Offering bite-sized projects, it’s aim is to get you to chip away at the clutter in your life and build a home you can feel zen in. The projects were practical and specific, taking the guesswork out of where to start in your home. I appreciated that the author seems to have a good grasp on the psychology of organizing and concepts beyond the scope of the book on how to find more time in your day and how to find the energy to sustain yourself. Even though she kind of breezes over them, it added a lot of credibility to her work that might be expanded on in her other book (One Year to an Organized Life), which I’ve yet to read. If you read this and love it, but still can’t find the energy for 8-minute allotments, I recommend Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratski and Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport as supporting resources to help you make the positive changes you’re after (both have incredibly detailed strategies and tactics to reclaiming time and living with intention – I highly recommend both). I think it all plays a part in what us committed organizers are trying to achieve long-term. It’s about a gradual lifestyle change, not just physical living condition changes. The one thing in the book that rings counter to what I’ve experienced over the years is that the author suggests making a LOT of purchases right off the bat to help deal with certain spaces. I would caution that it’s worth having things contained imperfectly for a while if you’re just getting into this decluttering/organizing thing. The more you do it, the more you eventually let go, and the more creative you get with your spaces. Buying storage novelties too soon not only adds up in costs, but can actually trap you into keeping more things because you’ve purchased a designated “home” for them and letting things go would make the new organizing things you just bought obsolete. Storage “solutions” can be enablers if you’re not careful. Getting your home in order is a gradual process and usually involves a lot of trial and error. I realize the book doesn’t really focus too much on the decluttering aspect (to its detriment), but even acknowledges that it’s the first step in every long-term organizing solution. It’s pretty clear from her descriptions of clearing out dry cleaning bags (from kids closets too!!) and the types of items she suggests for purchase that she’s used to organizing for wealthier clientele who are probably more interested in containing what they have than any long-term reduction of stuff. If you’re anything like me and most of the people I know, a large investment in storage solutions just isn’t practical (even though it’s tempting – yes I’ve watched The Home Edit on Netflix and I want all the beautiful organizing things). If anything, keep your purchases cheap (like $1 baskets cheap) until you’ve gotten into a good rhythm. THEN make the pretty organizing purchases for the things you’ve evaluated are “definite keepers” down the line. My personal favorites are these little crates Walmart gets every fall for their back to school setups ($1 and $3 price points, you can’t beat it). The cheap solutions let you play around with arrangements until you get it just right without huge cost. You can always upgrade later. She’s also a bit delusional about the anal retentive nature required by all people who live in a home to tidy up after themselves every single time they leave a room. Now, I’ve been accused of being a bit obsessive about stuff like this in the past, which is all well and good, but even I can’t muster the energy to keep up the level of consistency she suggests. Believe it or not, there is actually a diminishing value of return on the efficiency that comes from staying on top of every menial task in your life. But that’s just addressing my own behavior. Trying to get others in the household to maintain the same level of consistency would not only be a full time, stressful policing job, but it would also be an effort in futility. You can’t control those around you – trying to will just wreck your own personal serenity. Chances are, if your household is cluttered, the answer is a healthy combination of decluttering (less stuff to manage) and an “in moderation” adaptation of the good habits she’s trying to convey in this book (because it is generally easier to get in the habit of picking stuff up as you go than trying to deal with a pile later, as long as it doesn’t turn obsessive). I personally do a 15 min power tidy at the end of the night to address all of these things, and usually I can get the people around me to help. Up until that point I’m just enjoying life. I’m well past the beginning premises of this book, having been tackling the concepts and habits for several years now (and in the process, devouring every piece of literature and YouTube video on the subject I could get my hands on). So I didn’t get a lot out of it. Most of the areas mentioned were ones I’ve already been over dozens of times. Just for kicks, I did take a few of my areas next-level so I could feel like I was doing something new. Even though I select my clothes based on sleeve length in the mornings, I took 8 minutes and rearranged my hanging clothes by color. Based on my habits, it probably won’t serve me long term, but it sure looks pretty. I didn’t touch my sock drawer… some systems are just meant to be macro-organized (check out the Clutter Bug’s (Cassandra Aarssen’s) 4 organizing personalities on YouTube. Regina Leeds is great at customizing for micro/visual organizers (bees), but neglects the need of the other “bugs.” Many people need macro solutions, not just detailed, micro systems. I use a mix of both even though I lean more micro. Recommendation: As I mentioned, this book is geared more toward the inherent organizer rather than the average person with a clutter problem. I really can’t imagine someone who hates organizing but wants to get their house in order reveling at the idea of spending time meticulously sorting their sock drawers (which is not a joke, that’s one of the first thing she covers). So I’d probably only suggest this to people who already have the organizing bug but would like a detailed road map on where to start and how to tackle it (with additional decluttering references unless the only aim is to contain what you already have better). The book does a decent job taking the brainwork out of the organizing areas of focus. Books mentioned:

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Holy heck, why does this book have such low ratings? It's so helpful! The 8-minute bit didn't make a whole lot of sense, but I was completely sold on her central message: that being organized not only comes about by habit, it can be fun. I also love her 'zenness' and her holistic approach to calm and order. Best of all: she's not arrogant about it at all, and seems like a lovely and approachable lady I'd love to have tea with. (As far as personal development is concerned, I never say that about Holy heck, why does this book have such low ratings? It's so helpful! The 8-minute bit didn't make a whole lot of sense, but I was completely sold on her central message: that being organized not only comes about by habit, it can be fun. I also love her 'zenness' and her holistic approach to calm and order. Best of all: she's not arrogant about it at all, and seems like a lovely and approachable lady I'd love to have tea with. (As far as personal development is concerned, I never say that about ANY other author!) Highly recommended!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lori

    This book delivers exactly what it promises: "easy solutions to simplify your life in your spare time." I have read countless books and followed even more blogs on topics like this, and this is one of the first ones I found that addresses the reader as a serious, thinking individual. I can't get through entire blog entries sometimes because I'm so put off by the feeling of "Aw, shucks! Your life is a total mess, but golly so is everyone else's!" No, my life is NOT a total mess, but that doesn't This book delivers exactly what it promises: "easy solutions to simplify your life in your spare time." I have read countless books and followed even more blogs on topics like this, and this is one of the first ones I found that addresses the reader as a serious, thinking individual. I can't get through entire blog entries sometimes because I'm so put off by the feeling of "Aw, shucks! Your life is a total mess, but golly so is everyone else's!" No, my life is NOT a total mess, but that doesn't mean there's no room for improvement, for more precise organization and for what Regina Leeds calls "life tweaks," or habits that will help to establish order. The approach actually does feel quite Zen, with a feasible emphasis on simplicity, not austerity. I highly recommend this. As an earlier commenter posted, the author feels like someone you'd enjoy having over for tea.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    If it were as easy as she makes it, I wouldn't need to read the book in the first place. It's like telling a man in a wheelchair to run over there and jump here. ADHD cripples the ability to organize, and afflicted people need a whole lot more than is offered here. The first project for a child's closet is to remove all the dry-cleaning plastic. Huh? What world does she live in, anyway? I recommend "Sink Reflections" by Marla Cilley (Flylady.net), who understands her target audience far better, an If it were as easy as she makes it, I wouldn't need to read the book in the first place. It's like telling a man in a wheelchair to run over there and jump here. ADHD cripples the ability to organize, and afflicted people need a whole lot more than is offered here. The first project for a child's closet is to remove all the dry-cleaning plastic. Huh? What world does she live in, anyway? I recommend "Sink Reflections" by Marla Cilley (Flylady.net), who understands her target audience far better, and gives advice even the most challenged can work with.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    What I like about this book is that it offers simple solutions that can make a difference in home organization without getting too wrapped up in the *whys* of mess. My feeling is you don't need psychoanalysis to get organized (though many books, including most of Regina Leeds', imply it). This is the "Just Do It" school, and that's refreshing for a change. What I like about this book is that it offers simple solutions that can make a difference in home organization without getting too wrapped up in the *whys* of mess. My feeling is you don't need psychoanalysis to get organized (though many books, including most of Regina Leeds', imply it). This is the "Just Do It" school, and that's refreshing for a change.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kascia

    Regina Leeds break down the organization process into smaller projects and increments of time. There are no major secrets or crazy tactics revealed, however this book does make the daunting task of being organized seem attainable. If you’re looking for simple ways to make your home or office more organized, this is a great start to get the confidence you need. She also offers suggested tools and resources that are helpful.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kristi

    A very good book! I thoroughly enjoyed this book! My house has been disorganized for years. I have read numerous organising and cleaning books, but nothing worked for me. I'm not going to empty everything from a room. It's just not feasible for me. However, I can organize for 8 minutes at a time. This book made organizing seem achievable to me. Not everything in the book was applicable to me. (For example, I have no dry cleaning bags to throw away.) Yet, I got a lot of information from the book. I A very good book! I thoroughly enjoyed this book! My house has been disorganized for years. I have read numerous organising and cleaning books, but nothing worked for me. I'm not going to empty everything from a room. It's just not feasible for me. However, I can organize for 8 minutes at a time. This book made organizing seem achievable to me. Not everything in the book was applicable to me. (For example, I have no dry cleaning bags to throw away.) Yet, I got a lot of information from the book. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to declutter and get organized. After all, who can't spare 8 minutes?

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    I had higher hopes for this book, thinking it would give me more tips to help organize my house in ways that would be more practical for me, and while it was filled with tons of ideas, due to the limited time of having the book from the library, I had a harder time implementing some of them as they required more than just a change in organization, but more of a change in mentality and thought process. I think this book really would be helpful for me with extended time. There were some good tips I had higher hopes for this book, thinking it would give me more tips to help organize my house in ways that would be more practical for me, and while it was filled with tons of ideas, due to the limited time of having the book from the library, I had a harder time implementing some of them as they required more than just a change in organization, but more of a change in mentality and thought process. I think this book really would be helpful for me with extended time. There were some good tips I was able to implement, so I did find the book useful.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kara Cutler

    Some useful thoughts on breaking up organizing tasks into small, more manageable chunks of 8 minutes. Not a lot of especially new or special info otherwise. I would give it 3.5 stars if I could, but I won’t give 3 for the sake of the author 😊 Worth at least a quick skim if the subject of organizing interests you, but won’t be an exhaustive resource.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Holli Keel

    The best part of this book is the simple routines it gives you for keeping your house organized and clean. I haven’t made them a habit yet, but even doing them a little has made a difference in my house. Plus it inspired me to keep decluttering.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Diana Shaffner

    A much better strategy than those discussed in the book is to learn to live with LESS. It is the excess that creates the problems. Organizing and tidying can be a very zen-like experience if your space is not jammed full of clutter and excess. Work towards owning less than you won't need this book. A much better strategy than those discussed in the book is to learn to live with LESS. It is the excess that creates the problems. Organizing and tidying can be a very zen-like experience if your space is not jammed full of clutter and excess. Work towards owning less than you won't need this book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Becca

    Great quick tips on organizing and breaking down each room into chunks. Some of the tasks take a little more than 8 minutes, but it still makes the task of organizing a home very manageable.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    There were some good ideas in here, and i am going to implement some of them...but as I suspected, much of the advice was stuff I have heard before.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    This book is how to organize when you have too much crap- the lists in here are seriously long and full of unnecessary stuff. If you really need to go out and purchase every organizing do-dad she suggests, you clearly just have too much stuff. Things I don’t like about this book: -The emphasis that you need to buy a bunch of organizing crap from the container store -the idea of separating your paper crap into six other separate files in order to deal with it later -the assumption that most hotels h This book is how to organize when you have too much crap- the lists in here are seriously long and full of unnecessary stuff. If you really need to go out and purchase every organizing do-dad she suggests, you clearly just have too much stuff. Things I don’t like about this book: -The emphasis that you need to buy a bunch of organizing crap from the container store -the idea of separating your paper crap into six other separate files in order to deal with it later -the assumption that most hotels have robes for their guests, or you can just borrow one from from friends/family- uh no- I will not be borrowing someone else’s robe and if we are supposed to simplifying things for ourselves, do we really need a robe every time we are away from home? - three pairs of shoes for a four day trip? And that’s paring down your suitcase? Ugh- this book makes me anxious with all the clutter and excessiveness

  15. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

    This is a great book for people who like to check all the boxes. She gives you a lot of boxes to check! Leeds breaks down each room into a series of 8-minute tasks. Larger projects are broken down into several 8-minute sections and then there are quickies that are shorter than 8 minutes. I would give this book 3.5 stars honestly. It's not that I don't think her advice is good, it's that she's very bossy. She says at one point that if you can't get rid of your stuff you should see a therapist bec This is a great book for people who like to check all the boxes. She gives you a lot of boxes to check! Leeds breaks down each room into a series of 8-minute tasks. Larger projects are broken down into several 8-minute sections and then there are quickies that are shorter than 8 minutes. I would give this book 3.5 stars honestly. It's not that I don't think her advice is good, it's that she's very bossy. She says at one point that if you can't get rid of your stuff you should see a therapist because you have issues. I agree with her but her delivery is almost combative. If you like a book that says 'go here, do this, then when you're done, go over there and do that' you'll really like this book.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jes

    This is a great book for everyone who wants to get organized and gets flustered about how bad they are at it. In fashion of her One Year to an Organized Life, Regina Leeds breaks down the basics of finding homes for the clutter in your home and how to relieve your home from unnecessary possessions. I also like the quotes she uses to preface each section. The exercises in this book are simple, timed, and broken down so that even the most daunting task seems manageable. I'd recommend this to teenag This is a great book for everyone who wants to get organized and gets flustered about how bad they are at it. In fashion of her One Year to an Organized Life, Regina Leeds breaks down the basics of finding homes for the clutter in your home and how to relieve your home from unnecessary possessions. I also like the quotes she uses to preface each section. The exercises in this book are simple, timed, and broken down so that even the most daunting task seems manageable. I'd recommend this to teenagers getting ready for college and new home owners/apartment renters. Basically, I think most adults can benefit from this book. Also, I think I'm a Regina Leeds fan girl now.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Sheryl M. Baker

    I found The 8 Minute Organizer to be very helpful and encouraging Not only did it take you room-by-room through the house, but it also broke the organization of each room down to managable 8 minute time increments. Author Rebina Leeds' tips on how to organize each area were "doable" if you put your mind to it. Breaking each area down into managable 8 minute increments helps to tackle the elephant-sized task that overwhelms so many. I have started and am excited to complete each room. I found The 8 Minute Organizer to be very helpful and encouraging Not only did it take you room-by-room through the house, but it also broke the organization of each room down to managable 8 minute time increments. Author Rebina Leeds' tips on how to organize each area were "doable" if you put your mind to it. Breaking each area down into managable 8 minute increments helps to tackle the elephant-sized task that overwhelms so many. I have started and am excited to complete each room.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Robin Sacks

    As a fan of the concept of breaking things into smaller tasks, I liked that this book was chock full of quick and do-able ideas for organizing every room of your home...piece by piece There were a couple of things I skipped past, simply because they did not apply for me. However, the overall message that "tidying-up" and organizing are very different things that have very different results is a good one. As a fan of the concept of breaking things into smaller tasks, I liked that this book was chock full of quick and do-able ideas for organizing every room of your home...piece by piece There were a couple of things I skipped past, simply because they did not apply for me. However, the overall message that "tidying-up" and organizing are very different things that have very different results is a good one.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Arya McCarthy

    Good overall message: you can split cleaning tasks into 8 minute chunks. Provides a menu of ways to fill those 8 minutes. Also some decent parenting advice about how to engage kids in the process. But (1) makes strong assumptions about home layout (and implicitly the reader’s socioeconomic status), and (2) doesn’t give concrete advice on how to keep the habit up for 21 days when life happens. The second has been my biggest issue with most books in this genre.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Paula

    She starts out by saying people too often mistake tidying up with getting organized. Then she proceeds to spend most of the book advising us about how to tidy up. When she does get to the point of teaching some organizational skills, much of it involves long lists. In book form, that might work. I would have skimmed over these lists and determined if they would work for my purposes. In an audio book...horrors!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    It is okay information, but not much new if you have read organizing books before. I think I would rather read a hard copy than listen to the audio book because I could skip the parts I did not need to read. At times I found it to repetitive.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shannon

    I don't believe in 8-minute increments to truly get through a house for a first time decluttering. It takes much too much time to start something, stop something, and pick the same thing back up again. I don't believe in 8-minute increments to truly get through a house for a first time decluttering. It takes much too much time to start something, stop something, and pick the same thing back up again.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ann Mulholland

    I love books on organizing. This one had some good ideas. I've started implementing the suggested 8 minute segments and I love it! 8 minutes doesn't sound like a lot, but I am finding that I can get a lot done in those 8 little minutes I love books on organizing. This one had some good ideas. I've started implementing the suggested 8 minute segments and I love it! 8 minutes doesn't sound like a lot, but I am finding that I can get a lot done in those 8 little minutes

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rachelle

    This book is a good motivator for anyone that is overwhelmed with getting their house organized. The premise is 8 minute rounds of tasks to get an organized household as well as habit building when entering or leaving rooms to keep them tidy all the time.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gayle Tennant

    Don't listen to this on Audio! I felt I was being bombarded with patronizing advice. Making me feel like it's not just using 8 Minutes to organize but to shame me for being in a mess. Maybe it would be okay in small doses. I dont know. Don't listen to this on Audio! I felt I was being bombarded with patronizing advice. Making me feel like it's not just using 8 Minutes to organize but to shame me for being in a mess. Maybe it would be okay in small doses. I dont know.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Great instructions broken down into segments that aren't too overwhelming. Some of the techniques can be applied immediately, with great results! Already life-changing. Great instructions broken down into segments that aren't too overwhelming. Some of the techniques can be applied immediately, with great results! Already life-changing.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay Allen

    Some very good ideas, incredibly fast read.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ada

    Gave me some impetus to get a few quick projects done, so invaluable! I did organize my closet according to the color sequence Leeds suggests, and it does make me smile:)

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ike

    One word = obviously

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amy Margaroli

    Not a bad book, just very novice ideas about organizing. 2.5 stars

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