Organized Me: 4 Essentials Keeping Me On Track In 2016

Real Simple magazine, Rubbermaid containes perfect for food prep, Design Love Co. Planner, Marie Kondo

Looking to simplify your life in 2016? Here are the tools and resources that have really helped me.

1. I bought the January 2016 issue of Real Simple magazine—my first ever—on a whim while standing in line at Whole Foods. The headlines promised "This year is for you," "Happy and healthy," "organized and satisfied"—who doesn't want all of these things?! The pages are loaded with useful lifestyle tips for hitting refresh for the new year, from negotiating for a raise and cleaning out your closet to housekeeping and digital detoxing.

But for me, the most useful part of the magazine was a week-long meal prep plan at the back, complete with recipes and shopping list. More than anything else, this inspired me to start grocery shopping and cooking and eating at home again instead of subsisting on a regular rotation of takeout options. I can't find the meal plan on their website, but it's worth a browse regardless as there are tons of articles and resources there, including recipes for easy weeknight dinners.

2. Wedding planning, meal planning, chores, errands, workouts, appointments, can all become an overwhelming swirl if not for my trusty Design Love Co. planner, which helps me track everything in a single place. Read my full review of the planner here.

3. It's been almost a year since we Kondo'd our condo and I couldn't be happier about the positive changes it's brought into our lives. Less clutter, less cleaning, less time being overwhelmed by taking care of stuff and decision fatigue. We've since discarded even more possessions in mini-purges, if you can believe it, and while we're far from being minimalists this feels pretty minimalist for us.

If you're interested in doing your own KonMari overhaul, check out the original book or the new illustrated "master class" guide.

4. Rubbermaid Easy Find Lids containers. My pet peeve with a lot of food containers is that they're bulky and hard to store, and the lids are constantly going missing. Not so with these ones: they stack up neatly and the lids snap together with each other and with the bottoms of containers. They've made doing a whole week's worth of meal prep a breeze (that's a post for another day!).

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