If you’re like a lot of people, you probably start out the new year with the best of intentions to finally get organized and defeat clutter once and for all.
Then, before you know it, February is here. You look around and realize you have as much clutter as you ever had. Mail is piled up on the kitchen counter. Your work mess is spread out all over the dining room table. Your closet is bursting at the seams. And, you can’t even remember the last time you were able to pry open the overfilled kitchen junk drawer.
Where did things go wrong?
Sometimes it takes more than the best of intentions. The reason most people don’t follow through on their plans to finally get organized is that they don’t know where to begin, because the job just seems too huge.
The good news is, home organization doesn’t have to be overwhelming. In fact, it can be surprisingly simple.
Start with these three steps and you will be surprised at how easy it can be to keep your home neat and organized. That’s a valuable accomplishment, whether you’re planning to list your home in the future or keep it as your forever home.
Here’s where to begin:
1. Incorporate a 10-minute cleanup into your day—every day. The reason you feel overwhelmed is you might not know where to start. It probably seems an insurmountable task that is going to take a lot of time and energy. Instead of being overwhelmed, spend 10 minutes every day cleaning up.
You will be pleasantly surprised how easy it is to stay organized when you carve just a few minutes out of every day to tidy up, clean up and organize. Make it a point not to turn in for the night until you have clean kitchen countertops and sink, the mail has been dealt with, and the living room and dining room have been put back into order. That means surfaces cleaned off and cushions back in place.
2. Get rid of your online shopping evidence. No, not because you need to hide a shopping binge from your partner, but because leaving all those boxes lying around is adding a lot to your home’s clutter.
Sure, it’s easy to tell yourself that all those bulky boxes are going to be repurposed. And yet, they’re still just cluttering up your space. Besides, it isn’t as though you don’t have a ready supply, should the need arise. Instead of storing all that cardboard, recycle it, then discard any packaging material. Only save a box if you have identified an immediate, specific use. Then, use it, don’t store it.
3. Clear those surfaces. You may not realize it, but it’s difficult for your home to look clean and decluttered when tabletops and countertops are home to random clutter. When you get your mail, instead of throwing it on the table or countertop, deal with it immediately. Stow away bills and other mail out of sight that you plan to deal with later. Don’t let school or work papers pile up. The same goes for junk mail, newspapers, coupons or anything else that has found a home on surfaces throughout your home.
Along with all that paper, consider reducing the number of figurines, photos and decorative items you place on surfaces. Reducing the number of items on tabletops will also help you keep things free of dust. You’ll be surprised how much cleaner your home looks when it features clean surfaces. After addressing this initially, make it part of your 10-minute daily clean-up.
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