There’s a certain school of thought that says you can tell a lot about a woman’s state of mind from the inside of her handbag. So if yours is more like a piece of abstract art than a paragon of organization, it could be time for a clear out. We all have our essentials that we can’t leave the house without, and once you become a parent those things seem to multiply even further! We always want to be prepared – for emergencies, for work, for what our kids need. But sometimes we get carried away and end up carrying far too many items around in our totes and shoulder bags – which can lead to back pain, strain on our necks and terrible posture. It’s literal excess baggage. So, if you’re struggling to rationalise between being prepared and simply overpacking, the time is ripe to overhaul your bag.
Make Your Bag Work For You
A well organized bag just makes life easier. Who hasn’t felt the frustration of having to rummage through piles of old receipts and half-used lipsticks to try and find their keys? Being able to keep things in order means you can find what you need in a hurry. Sp grab a rubbish bin, some paper towels and baby wipes and get ready to clean out that bag.
1. Take Everything Out
Start by emptying out the bag and all its pockets thoroughly. Then pick out all the rubbish and get rid of it. Group the other items together in categories.
2. Clean It Up
Use a lint roller or some baby wipes to clean and sanitize the bag all over – inside and out. Turn the lining of the bag inside out to make sure you get all the little bits of debris. Make sure the wipes you use are alcohol-free so they don’t damage the material of the bag.
3. Sort Out Your Essentials
Once everything is clean and fresh, you can decide what to keep and get it really organized. You want to aim for a balance between being prepared and not carrying around lots of unnecessary items. As a basic rule, it’s good to keep:
- Your sunglasses
- A spare phone charger
- A bottle of hand sanitizer
- A face mask (you can now get pretty patterned ones in light cotton or silk)
- A small makeup bag – powder, concealer, lip balm and a nail file
- A container with aspirin, plasters, spare Tampax and hay-fever meds
- Your wallet, cash, cards and ID
- Your phone
- A reusable shopping bag
You don’t need much more than that, but it will cover most eventualities. Of course, there may be a few more personal items that you want to carry. Almost more important than what you carry are the things you don’t need to carry around, like too many loyalty cards, excess makeup, out of date receipts and any personal information you don’t need access to on a daily basis, such as your passport, in case your bag gets lost or stolen.
Now you’re beautifully organized with all the essentials, keep it that way by taking pictures of receipts and storing them digitally, or using the pouch method to keep everything neatly stored.