Decluttering your home plays an important part in reducing stress and encouraging productivity. From the bedroom to the kitchen, embracing minimalism and letting go of objects you don’t need or want can give your home an altogether fresher, more coordinated look as well as help you focus, boost your mood and encourage a better night’s sleep. Now the festive season has passed it’s the perfect time to review your home and think about areas that could benefit from decluttering. Is your wardrobe overflowing? Is the children’s room inaccessible with toys strewn across the floor? Whatever your new year’s resolutions, get a head start on a healthy 2018 with our top 5 tips for organizing your home…
1. Plan Ahead & Prioritise
Organizing your entire home is a daunting task. To make it more manageable, start by planning ahead and prioritizing areas; list all the rooms or areas that need attention and order them according to which ones cause the most stress. Another option is to prioritize the workload depending on where you or your family spends most of your time. For example, if you work from home a good place to start would be your home office or desk space. If you have young children perhaps their playroom or bedroom is in need of attention first?
2. Make Some Free Time
Once you have organized each room into priority order, you’ll need to clear a space in your schedule and dedicate a few hours, a day or even a whole weekend depending on the task. Scheduling this time in your calendar as if it is a regular appointment will help you to avoid temptation to keep putting it off, as well as make the whole process less stressful as you try to fit it in around daily demands.
3. Sweep, Throw Out & Recycle
Before you make your way through your decluttering priority list, take a large box and do a quick sweep throughout your home. Anything you see on a side, table or shelf that you don’t use or love, place in the box and move on. Once you’ve made your way through the whole house you’ll be surprised at the amount of clutter you had lying around that had no use or emotional value.
After the quick sweep, it’s time to focus on your high priority areas. Whether you start in the living room, bedroom or bathroom, the same rule applies with decluttering; you must place all of your possessions into one of three piles: ‘Keep’ ‘Maybe’ and ‘Throw/Recycle’.
The ‘Keep’ pile must contain items you use regularly, hold an emotional value or items that you genuinely love. The ‘Maybe’ pile is for items that you may not need or want, but you’d like to hold onto them for a little longer. Everything else that doesn’t fall into the ‘Keep’ or ‘Maybe’ pile can be thrown away if broken, or recycled/donated.
Once you’ve separated your possessions, it’s time to reorganise each room into a calming, stress free space. The key to achieving this is to designate a home for everything. If you’ve followed step three correctly, you should have reduced the amount of ‘stuff’ you have in your home and will have extra room to find a spot for everything you own.
Find a space for items that usually sit on surfaces such as keys, books, magazines, letters and phone chargers, and get into the habit of putting them back in their designated place after each use. Keeping surfaces clear from clutter is one of the simplest ways to encourage a peaceful mind as you aren’t constantly distracted by mess.
When everything has been put into its place, it’s time to address your ‘Maybe’ pile from step 3. Items you’ve put in here will be those you don’t necessarily use or love, but they’re items you would like to keep a little longer. Take everything in your ‘Maybe’ pile and store it somewhere hidden, whether in the loft, a cupboard or a spare bedroom. After a few months if you find you haven’t missed or thought about anything that’s in the box, you know the next time you declutter it can be placed in the ‘Throw, Donate or Recycle’ pile.
5. Introduce Houseplants
Add a sense of calm and breathe life into your newly organized home by investing in houseplants. Whether large or small, houseplants are one of the simplest ways to reconnect with nature and benefit more than just your interior scheme.
Chrysanthemums improve overall air quality inside the home, help to provide a point of calm and lessen symptoms of worry and stress. In the bedroom, look to the English Ivy plant and the Gerbera daisy which both help to remove toxins from the air, creating a calming ambience and promoting a restful night’s sleep. Naturally healing Aloe Vera is one of the most popular houseplants for its many health benefits and requires minimal care, making it the perfect option for the first-time houseplant owner.