I’m the kind of person that assigns home for everything I own. Yup, I’m that person.
My mind feels super cluttered whenever I’m physically surrounded by clutter so I’m diligent about making sure I handle one off organizational task quickly lest they turn into a huge monstrous mountain of junk.
I read in a book a few years ago that said if a task only takes a few minutes to complete you should do it immediately. Letting several of these few minute tasks pile up is how we end up feeling overwhelmed with all we have to do. I’m sure I’m not the only person that lays on the couch doing nothing when I become overwhelmed by needing to do everything, right?
With that in mind, I decided to implement a few small rules for my house that make keeping my home clutter-free and organized easier, even in the busiest of time:
- Collect empty hangers. There is literally nothing more spine-tinglingly annoying to me that wanting to hang clothes and not knowing where a hanger is. On top of that looking through a closet full of empty hangers just feels sloppy. What I’ve done to avoid the hanger hunt is put a basket on the floor of my closet. I chose a basket that was wide enough to comfortably fit the length of the hanger so that they can sit in the basket neatly and don’t get tangled. This may seem like something small, but it definitely cuts down on the amount of time I spend putting away clothes and picking out outfits. I also recommend using all of the same color felt hanger for the sake of visual uniformity. We use these and these. This is the basket I use to organize the hangers.
- Hang up coats/jackets/scarfs/purses immediately. Admittedly I don’t quite have Austin fully on board with this task just yet. He’s that person that mindlessly hangs their jacket over the back of a chair and goes about their business, not even realizing they’ve just done it. Having outerwear scattered about the home makes your home feel cluttered even if it really isn’t. I think it’s important to hang up your outerwear as soon as you get home and have an assigned location for your purse/sunglasses/keys. Not only will you never have to worry again about where you sat something, but it’s such a quick, simple task that really makes you feel like you have your shit together.
- Put away your shoes. This one probably seems just as obvious as hanging up your coat and yet its something so many of us ignore. A home looks sloppy and is a complete tripping hazard when you kick off your shoes in any direction as soon as you get home. Small shoe organizers are inexpensive and provide a space specifically dedicated to shoes. It seems like no big deal, but it makes a home look way more put together. We have this shoe bench right inside out front door and I used to have this one my closet before it was remodeled.
- Make your bed. There’s a sense of finality involved in making the bed. Its a symbolic act saying “I’m done sleeping and its time to take on the day.” A made bed discouraged loafing around, and encourages you to keep the rest of your bedroom in good order as well.
- Have a place to collect small accessories. At the end of the day, especially when we’re tired, no one wants to fuss with putting earrings and necklaces and other little bits away in their home. Having a small decorative dish to collect all these items is an easy, fuss free way to have everything in one place. You can out away everything in your accessories dish once a week. I recommend putting your dish wherever you find yourself disassembling each night, so a nightstand, dresser, or bathroom vanity would all be good choices. Obviously, it would be best to immediately put all your jewelry away, but fighting sleepiness is often a losing battle. Being prepared for it is the best line of defense against this variety of clutter. I used a cleaned out mini candle jar to collect my bits and bobs but here is the earring organizer and the necklace organizer I use.
- Open and deal with your mail everyday. I find piles of unopened mail sitting on the far end of someones dining room table just maddening. Nothing makes you look more like a hoarder than piles and piles of unopened mail. How? Why? I just don’t understand. Opening mail literally takes seconds. It’s junk – look into getting on their no send list or just toss it in the recycle bin? Its something requiring action – place it in your planner or at your desk to be handled expeditiously. Do not be intimidated by your mail! It’s just paper!