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As seen in the Dayton Daily News on May 19, 2018.

More often than not, parents put their child’s needs ahead of their own. This behavior usually starts before their first child is even born. New parents will spend much of their time getting the nursery ready while their own bedroom sometimes looks like a war zone.

My article today is a challenge for parents to put themselves first by focusing on your master bedroom. If you spend some time organizing your bedroom, you can create a peaceful place to retreat to when the rest of the house is completely out of control.

There are many reasons why you may want to focus on getting your room in order.

  • It’s the room you have the most control over. This is your room, the rest of the house is shared with your family.
  • It’s the first room you wake up to and the last you see before retiring for the night. Wouldn’t it be nice to open your eyes to a little calm before the crazy begins? After a long day, you could close your bedroom door and have your own private retreat.
  • It’s nice to have a space where the focus is on your marriage. You were a couple first. Honor that by creating a space where the two of you become the priority.
  • You are setting an example for your children. Children need to be taught how to organize. They may not acquire these skills otherwise. Besides, how can you ask them to keep their room neat if you don’t have an organized room?

Now that you see the importance of organizing your own room, here are some steps to make it happen.

  • Start by dividing up the space. Define which side of the closet and which drawers in the dresser belongs to each of you. This will keep you from messing up each other’s spaces.
  • Define a place for your dirty clothes and the clothes you wore, but aren’t dirty enough that they can’t be worn again.

Next, put guidelines in place to help you clean up your room and keep it organized moving forward.

  • There should be no toys in the room unless the kids are with you and playing with them.
  • Only clothing that fits and is in good repair belong in the closet.
  • Any dirty dishes and trash, such as old newspapers, leaves the room when you’re finished with them.
  • Only the reading material you are currently reading should be on your nightstand. The rest goes in a bookcase, in your nightstand or on a closet shelf.
  • Unfinished sewing projects should not be out unless you are currently working on them.
  • No clothing or shoes on the floor. They go in your closet, dresser, dirty clothes basket or hung in your designated space to be worn again.
  • Stop the excuse that ‘Company doesn’t see our room.’ Your bedroom is not a storage space and shouldn’t look like one.

As parent, I know how difficult it can be to carve out time to focus on your own needs. I suggest you and your spouse come up with a plan for organizing your bedroom, and then take turns watching your children while the other executes the plan.

Your marriage is important. It’s time you make the two of you a priority.