We’re always on the lookout for great organizational tips, and every single one of us has had at least a semi-messy room in need of a serious makeover. Still, we doubt that many of us has faced a challenge as daunting as the one involving the room pictured above!

Seriously, look at that photo up top again. That’s the bedroom of twenty-something Christina, a college graduate who moved back home with her mother, Mary Ann, in Garden City, New York. In the video below from The Rachael Ray Show, Mary Ann describes her daughter’s room as a “disaster,” and we have to say, that’s a bit of an understatement! There’s so little room in the space, in fact, that Christina mainly uses it for storage, and has to sleep on the floor of her younger brother’s room.

Christina explains that the mess began when she moved back home after college, and suddenly her “home stuff” and her “school stuff” were combined into one room. She’s been so overwhelmed that she doesn’t know where to start, frozen in inaction while the pile only grows.

Christina and Mary Ann in Christina's messy bedroomRachael Ray Show

Thankfully, Mary Ann finally had enough and reached out to Rachael Ray, who in turn sent organizational master Peter Walsh to help. Walsh not only demonstrates how to organize any bedroom, he shows us that no matter how big a disaster a room can seem, you CAN get it under control by following some simple steps and tips.

  1. Sort everything into three piles: keep, donate and throw away.

    Walsh recommends following what he calls “The Rule of 5,” where every five years you reevaluate everything you own and decide what’s really worth hanging onto for the next half-decade.

    What we especially like about the way Walsh goes about this process is that he really respects and honors what he calls “the power” our stuff has over us. Unlike a lot of stricter home organizers we could think of, he’s not going to be the one to tell you to throw out your child’s homemade outfit or grandpa’s camera just because you’re not going to get “use” out of it. He respects the memories.

    In fact, when Christina tears up when Walsh unearths a blanket that holds memories of her grandmother, he explains that possessions that mean that much deserve to be displayed with honor, not buried beneath a mountain of other stuff. Paying attention to how our things make us feel can help us determine what really matters and what we really need to keep, “useful” or not.

  2. Use vertical space.

    Walsh points out that this tip is especially useful and important for smaller spaces. Don’t let a tiny room deter you from getting organized! He recommends using racks or shelving up the walls to get stuff off of the floors and maximize what space you do have.

    In the case of Christina’s room, Walsh uses corner shelves and hangs things on the wall to display her mementos, achievements, and other memory-filled items.

  3. Maximize any storage space.

    The secret to making the most of any small closet? According to Walsh, it’s cascading hangars! These simply-designed connected hangars allow you to hang multiple garments in the same space where you’d otherwise be able to only hang one.

    And what about bulky out-of-season items? Walsh relies on a old standby we all know well: the under-the-bed storage container, of course!

These smart and simple steps can help any of us— even those of us with much smaller messes than Christina! To see how Peter Walsh manages to apply these tips to her room and to see the incredible transformation, check out the video from The Rachael Ray Show below. Seriously, you won’t believe it’s the same room!

What do you think of this bedroom transformation? Have you ever needed to clean out a room this overcrowded, or would you die before you let a room get this way? Do you have any of your own organizational tips to share?