Put your house in order with the Japanese 5S technique

How many times did you put away a room in your house, making it perfect, and did you find it after a week again chaotic? How long do you need to store your bedroom, living room, children’s bedroom or office? We have often wondered if there is a method that would help us put the house in order in less time, and that order can be maintained.

MagicalTip offers you the Japanese technique of 5S, which will help you achieve a consistent and sustainable order in five simple steps. In this article, we will help you tidy your room so that you can apply the same technique in every room of your house. At work!

#1. Seiri / Select

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The first step, called Seiri or Select, is to distinguish what is needed from what is not, depending on the frequency of use. Think of everything you have in your room: it’s a lot, is not it? You do not know where to start. Do not worry !

  • To succeed in this step, it is important that you do not touch anything in the room. This is because the “pick” action is all about sorting and “tagging” the things you use the least with a red tag and the ones you use most with a green tag.
  • You can use a yellow tag as an intermediary, to indicate less frequent use.
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Stand in the middle of your room and use the following diagram to help you choose the items you’ll need to put away later, or those you’ll need to leave at hand:

  • For example, you are in front of a DVD player that does not work: will you repair it or use it? If the answer to these questions is no, attach a red tag and define a place where you will keep it, knowing that you will not use it. The best thing for objects with a red tag is to get them out of the room (you can put them in an attic or cellar while waiting to sort them out or get rid of them).
  • In the case of yellow tags, which are items you use once a week or month, you can put them in a closet inside the room. Examples of such items are handbags that you do not use as often, a folder that you complete monthly or weekly.
  • Finally, a daily notebook, your tablet or headphones should have a green tag and be placed near where you usually stand; for example on your desk and at your fingertips.

#2. Seiton / Organize

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Everything you have already marked with a red, yellow or green label must have its location in or out of the room. This step, Seiton in Japanese or Organize in French, refers to having a place for everything and everything in its place; that is, to easily standardize the places in order to be able to identify the objects.

  • Mark and name the place assigned to each object so that it is easily identifiable: if you have marked one or two bags that you do not use as often with a yellow label, make sure to give them a space in your custody -dress and write “Bags” on the label. It’s the same if you have folders or files in order of dates.
  • Remember that anything with a green label should be prominently displayed and handy, such as on your desk, on a shelf without a door, or on your bed. Also remember that everything you use on a daily basis should be the easiest to find and should be visually identifiable. To do this, there is a very practical rule that you can use to check if the placements are correctly labeled: you must not take more than thirty seconds to perform each of the following actions: find an object, take it and put it back in its place place after use.

#3. Seiso / Clean

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You arrive there ! You have selected everything in your room, you have everything in the right places and now comes the cleaning part.

  • The third step of the 5S technique, called Seiso or Clean, refers to this, the cleaning of the freed area and the spaces used to store the objects.
  • In this technique, the action of cleaning not only means that something looks clean, but also to prevent accidents (if an object is on the floor and you do not see it, you can fall and be hurt ).
  • That’s why, for 5S, cleaning is a daily task, not only to get a clean space, but also to detect any deviation from the established standard and avoid an infinite cleaning process.

#4. Seiketsu / Standardize

We are only a few steps away, but this does not mean that these last steps are less important.

  • The fourth step, Seiketsu or Standardize, aims to maintain order based on the previous three “Ss”, ie, to evaluate space and adjust any aspect that deviates from the standard we define.
  • To do this, we need to develop a kind of roadmap with a periodic checklist (weekly or every three days).
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#5. Shitsuke / Maintain

Finally, the fifth and final step, called Shitsuke or Maintain, aims to establish a schedule for monitoring and “checking” the situation, as well as ensuring that all responsibilities within the 5S have been well understood.

  • For example, if it is a shared room, both parties should have clear responsibilities to maintain order and cleanliness of the room.
  • This “S” is intended to ensure that these tasks are defined from the beginning to avoid misunderstandings and that one of the other “S” is in danger. This is why each party must know, validate and accept its tasks, which must be established by mutual agreement.
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Did you already know this storage and ordering technique? What other technique can you share with us?

Cover picture By qiye / Pixabayqiye / Pixabay