One of my beliefs is that a clutter free house creates a warm, productive, and peaceful home. A space (be it a house or an office, etc) that is filled with clutter produces anxiety, depression, and stress. Clutter can take the form of stacks of papers or overflowing kitchen cabinets or too many tchotchkes on a surface or even an inbox full of messages. A clutter free home or work space lifts the mood, creates a sense of pride in your space, and also makes you want to be in your home. Decluttering can truly take your house to a home. The other week, I wrote about 10 ways to create a warm and inviting home, and one of those ways is Less is More. Here are a few ideas of how to keep clutter at bay…
- Go through mail and papers as soon as they come in. Throw away what you don’t need. With the rest, create a system for organizing bills that are yet to be paid, papers you need to keep, etc. Although our kids create wonderful pieces of art, we actually don’t have to keep every single one of those masterpieces (gasp!). After displaying them for a few days, pick a few to represent your child’s age/stage, label them and then keep them tucked away in a box.
- Go through your kitchen cabinets and only keep what you use. If you have a character cake pan that you used once for your son’s 2nd birthday, put it in the donate pile (I may or may not be guilty of this one!). The point is that we generally don’t use a large portion of what we have stored in our cabinets.
- Keep a designated "junk" drawer. This is so handy to have in the kitchen as a catch-all for pens, coupons, pads of paper, etc. so that these items are not sitting on your counter.
- Clear off your surfaces. In your kitchen and bathroom, keep very little on your counter tops. When you go through your cabinets, you’ll create room to store those “extra” items that you’ve been storing on your countertops.
- Clear off your surfaces #2. I am a fan of tchotchkes, but too many creates a lot of “noise” in your home. So, if you are a collector of something, display your 3 favorites and pack away the rest. Use small items sparingly in your décor and make sure they compliment your overall style and scheme.
- Clean out closets. For some reason, our closets just collect stuff! Take the time each season to evaluate what you wore, what still fits, what you actually like. Do this in your kids' closets as well. Either donate or sale items that are gently used.
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