Whether you’re looking to simplify your space or to keep your family organized during the hectic week, consider a few command center ideas and tips that can help you stay on top of things!
What exactly is a command center, you ask? It’s a storage area for items you need to grab on a regular basis as you head out the door, as well as family calendar reminders and the like, and it’s becoming a popular term on social media. Creating one in a prominent place in your home, and developing a habit to use it, can save time and reduce stress—whether you tend to lose your keys, cellphone or sunglasses, or your kids forget their homework or soccer practice.
“It’s a unified zone where your day can begin and end in an organized fashion,” said Tanya Bond of Functioning Spaces.
If you want a space to store your important necessities and a place to keep tasks organized, read on for tips from two professional organizers, who can help you take control of your daily essentials.
Make Your Command Center Easy-Access
Create your command center near your front door, mudroom, kitchen – or in any room that you spend a lot of time in – so you can easily find all the stuff you will eventually keep there.
“The command center should be placed in a central location of the home, an area that is easily accessible at all times to ensure that everyone is benefiting from the command center as much as they can,” said Bond.
Have a small tray handy on the desk for your wallet, and have some hooks installed on the wall where you can hang your keys, said Bond. Be sure to put your wallet and keys there the minute you walk through the door, so you always know where to find them. You can use a desk or a storage cabinet and then add a bulletin board, hooks or cubbies – whatever will keep those everyday essentials organized and easy to spot.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of hooks around your command center,” said Megan Ludvinsky of About Space Organizing. “If you have the space, you’ll need them. Sports, dance, or work bags – everything you need for the next day should hang there.”
Use a Command Center for Loss Prevention
After you’ve chosen a spot in your home, decide what needs to be stored there so it can be found fast.
If you have little kids, then you may need to store backpacks and dance bags. High schoolers may need homework folders, etc. For adults, a command center is a great place to keep your daily gear for work or college, like your office security badge or textbooks.
You should also keep any items that you need to grab on your way out the door here, like backpacks or briefcases, so you’re not late to school or work. And use a bulletin board and calendar if they would be helpful for coordinating schedules and sharing other information.
“Every command center for every family is different,” said Ludvinsky.
Command Center Ideas: Add Organization Supplies
Transform a shelf or desk into a command center by adding storage shelves or supplies that will organize your life. This can include magazine holders for your mail, a calendar to remind you of weekly tasks or storage spaces for umbrellas and the like.
“Shelving and vertical space is KEY when creating an efficient command center, because we all have very limited floor and desk space,” said Bond. “Bulletin boards or pegboards are very useful for displaying important documents, notes, invitations, calendars, etc. It’s an area your eyes are immediately drawn to, which is what makes it so effective.”
Your command center can also be a great place to charge and store your cellphone or tablet between uses, said Ludvinsky.
“If space allows, and you have more than one kid, then each kid should have a bin or storage spot,” she added. “That space can have all the gear they need for that week.”
And don’t forget to add fun things – like flowers, artwork or photographs – so your command center fits in with your home’s décor.
“A command center has two purposes: to simplify your life and to inspire,” said Bond. “These objectives can be achieved simply by organizing several key elements of your day-to-day life.”