Even though some people claim to work better in a so called “creative chaos”, the fact is that it's a lot easier to get things do quickly in a well-organized home. Decluttering can help you create more free space so that everyone can move freely, as well as make you feel more comfortable and enable you to focus on the important things.
An organized home will improve your quality of life, even if you don't realize it yet, as you won't have to constantly run around the house looking for things, all the while bumping into or tripping over stuff. That being said, you can't completely declutter your home in a single day, but with these excellent tips you will manage to do it gradually, but steadily during the course of a couple of weeks.
Devote 5-15 minutes to simple cleaning tasks whenever you have some free time
We tend to put off simple chores until they become a significant problem that needs to be dealt with immediately, and it’s usually because we lack the energy to commit to a full-on cleanup project when we come home after a long hard day at work. However, if you take the one or two hours that it would take to get everything neat and tidy, and chop it down into 5 to 15 minute intervals, you can manage to squeeze in a bunch of small tasks during gaps in your schedule – e.g. throwing out the trash or washing a few dishes while you are waiting for your coffee to brew, or cleaning the clutter from your desk while waiting for an email response.
Start any cleaning session by collecting trash from around the houseThe biggest problem with getting started with household chores is that we get demotivated when we see what looks like tons of stuff littered around the place. The thing is that even a fairly small amount of junk spread across the room can make things seem much worse than they really are. The first thing you need to do is get two bags – one for trash and one for things that need to be relocated. Go around the room, or the entire house if you have the time, and fill up those bags. You can even carry a tray for clearing out coffee mugs, plates and glassware that gets left behind in different rooms.
Clear all tables, nightstands and counters first, so that you can work more efficiently For most tasks around the home, you are going to need a nice big flat surface to work on, and you can't do that if all your tables and counters are full of unnecessary items. Once you have dealt with the trash and relocated the things that were not in their intended place, clear out all the flat surfaces, clean the dust, and try to leave about 80% of clear space on them. Leave only the essentials, and find another place for the things that are not essential.
Create additional hidden storage space without adding more furniture While we're on the subject of finding another place for trinkets, magazines, gadgets and small tools, it's important to note that a lot of people simply don't have enough effective storage space in their home to accommodate all their possessions. Cleaning out the junk and putting everything back in its rightful place will only give you so much extra room, so you'll have to think outside the box. You can use ottomans with a hollow center, coffee tables with large drawers, as well as some hooks and shelves for quick and simple storage options. This way you get more use out of your furniture, and everything that you've stored away is within arm's reach when you need it.
Have some light remodeling done to enhance your free space
This requires a bit more time and money than other simple organizing hacks, but it is the best long-term solution. A few simple changes like getting a new kitchen set, installing solar panels on the roof or fixing up the attic, can allow you to keep your house tidy with much less effort. In fact, basement and attic remodeling projects are incredibly popular, as they turn that extra space into something more than storage areas for junk. You can display all kinds of memorabilia, trophies and souvenirs, have a big filing cabinet, or store your winter clothes during the summer – just remember that you have to let go of some of that extra stuff if you don't really need it. With good professionals at your side, you can quickly make some big improvements.
Do a good deed and donate some of your stuff Speaking of extra stuff that eats up space – there are probably tons of clothes and other useful items in your home that are in good condition, but just don't see that much use. Such items can be donated to various charities, given to friends and relatives, or you can have a yard sale and get a little cash back for all the extra stuff, which can then be used to fund other projects on this list.
Optimize your drawers with a simple trick People sometimes use drawers as sort of a trash can, where they can just throw in anything that is cluttering up their desk or coffee table at the moment. However, while this creates the illusion that your home is tidy and you get some more free space to work with, trying to recover an object from such a drawer will be a nightmare. A simple trick you can use is to create compartments using cardboard and some glue. Making these compartments for a number of drawers can be a fun weekend project, and it will allow you to keep track of your things much more effectively.
A good kitchen knife can replace a dozen “convenient” kitchen gadgets
We all want the latest gadget that makes our lives easier, and some of the supposedly revolutionary kitchen tools can get fairly complex, promising to efficiently deal with several cooking tasks. Well, there is one tool that is going to help you with just about 80-90% of the cooking process – a good old fashioned kitchen knife.
Don't let your drawers and counters fill up with all manner of weird-looking multipart gadgets, slicers, scissors and a bunch of cheap knives that dull quickly, when all you need is a high quality knife and a cutting board for most of your cooking chores. Throw out all the useless junk, and focus on the basic tools, but make sure that you invest in a quality set of basic tools that will last you a lifetime. Less clutter and more functionality makes this a win-win option.
Make it easy to quickly relocate things on a moment's noticeThe ultimate “secret” for maintaining a well-organized home is minimalism. You want to make the most of what free space you have, and given the fact that you often need to move things around – e.g. someone’s coming to stay with you for a few days, you need more room for a project or a party, and so on – it's best to have a simple way of clearing things out. One solution is to always have a tray in the corner of your coffee table that frequently used items sit on, so that you can simply lift everything up and make more room. You can also keep all the small items that you need handy throughout the day in small travel toiletry bag, have your camping gear ready to go in a backpack hanging in the hall etc.
Using these easy tips, and thinking outside the box will definitely help you clear out all the unnecessary clutter from your home, and become a lot more organized. Just keep in mind that you need to constantly work on maintaining the order that you've created.