Last week I organized my shoes. This may not seem like a monumental feat, but it left me with a feeling of mental freedom. Shoes are apparel that can quickly go out of style, become obsolete (particularly if you change climates) and simply lose their luster.

What I found in my closet were pairs that could be donated (some never worn – the result of “impulse buying”), shoes that had reached their expiration date, and others which found a new home on the garage shelf, now designated as “casual wear.” What was left over were shoes that fit, were fashionable, and which were easy to access because everything was in full view. I purchased a space saving hanging rack that fits over the back of my closet door, and a standalone two tiered rack for my sandals and summer shoes.

Now that everything is assembled in one place and I can clearly see what I have, I realized that some shoes needed repair and the leftover needed a good polish. I love the sorted out feeling that this exercise has given me, because I’m no longer visually assaulted by a menagerie of shoes (many of which had lost their value, and some that were simply “lost”).

I now limit shoe purchases to those that are absolutely necessary. When I look in my closet I see only new or recently shined shoes, and it gives me a feeling of contentment. I have exactly what I need and only what I need.

Small spaces aren’t necessarily organizational obstacles – they are a challenge to efficiently use what you have and to toss the remainder.

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All viewpoints expressed by Jackie Gilbert are her own, and not of her employer.

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