Ever wonder what’s the best way to organize your bag? Do you struggle with having a bag that is crowded, or one in which everything falls to the bottom? This is a common struggle. When we have to dig through a bag in order to find what we need we both waste time and get frustrated. If this sounds familiar, here are a few ideas for how to bring order to your bag.
FIRST: Select one bag that will be your “regular” bag.
I know it can be fun to switch handbags, and if you enjoy this process without issue, by all means carry on. However, if you are struggling, you might want to stick to one bag, especially for “daily use.” When we switch bags, we are more likely to leave something important in another bag. Also, because bags have different shapes and sizes, it is harder to establish a reliable system for what goes where when we use different bags. To make life simpler, select a bag that will accommodate everything you need. If the bag you choose already has items inside, dump them out, and shake the bag upside down over a trash can so you can start fresh.
SECOND: Identify what you always want to have in your bag.
Assemble all the items that you know you definitely want with you every time you go out. Examples of these “must haves” include:
- Lip Balm
Other common items that people carry include:
- Hand sanitizer
- Vaccination card/ID card
- Hand lotion
- Mints/gum/cough drops
- Dental floss
- Feminine protection
- Nail file/nail clippers
- Hairbrush/comb/hair elastics
- Pocket knife/multi-tool
- Instant stain remover
Depending on your particular situation (business worker, student, parent on the go, etc.), you might also want to have:
- Business cards
- Electronics, charging cords, earphones
- Portable battery charger
- Thumb drive
- Water bottle
- Diapers & Wipes
- Reusable fold-up bag
THIRD: Establish locations inside the bag for specific items.
Begin by considering the built-in compartments that are in your bag. For instance:
- What will live in the outside pocket(s)?
- How about the zippered pocket on the inside?
- Are there pockets or pouches that are well-sized for specific belongings?
- Is there a space ring or carabiner for your keys?
Resist the temptation to simply stash items back into your bag. Mindfully choose what will live where.
Bags often have large, unstructured areas that are not ideal for carrying small items in an organized way. Tiny objects tossed loosely into a gaping bag fall to the bottom and get lost. Additionally, fragile items can get damaged if not properly protected. This is true for any large storage space into which we try and place small items, such as a car console, deep drawer or wide shelf. However, if your bag lacks sufficient internal structure, you can add some of your own.
There are a couple of ways to add structure to a bag:
- Use small pouches to hold like items together, such as cosmetics, writing implements, adapters, cords, and personal care supplies.
- Add an insert to your bag that has built-in pockets and storage spaces.
- Obtain containers that are specifically designed to keep fragile items, such as glasses and electronics, safe.
Need a little visual inspiration? Here are a few examples of products that work well for keeping items organized and protected in bags.
Naturally, the types of structure that will work best depends upon what you want to carry with you.
Additionally, you may want to set up multiple bags for different types of activities. For example, a backpack for school, a briefcase for the office, a gym bag, a beach bag, etc. These same ideas can be applied to any type of container.
How do you keep your bag organized?