As you look around your home, you may notice that your counters or tables tend to hold clutter. You may notice that your child’s room is a source for clutter. Things are piling up around you. How does this make you feel?
I know for myself when my environment starts to feel cluttered or disorganized, then my brain does too! This leads to feelings of overwhelm, agitation, and removes me from the moment. I am more likely to start cleaning and organizing. I am more likely to fixate and obsess about the dishes in the sink, the dirty floors, and the laundry that is piling up. What I am a less likely to focus on?
I am less likely to focus on what really matters, my family. Even if I chose to play with my children instead of clean, I am not in the moment. My mind is cleaning the home, it is fixated on the clutter, and trying to mentally determine when and how I can get it all under control.
This is not how I want to show up as a mother. Sure, cleaning, organizing, and house maintenance are apart of life. These tasks need to be done. No one is arguing their importance. I also firmly believe that it is important for a family to be involved in this process. As parents, it is are duty to raise our children up to become successful adults. The way to do this in my opinion is by role modeling what this looks like. So, cleaning and organizing is not a bad thing. It is when that is where you spend all of your time and it takes you away from your family.
So, let’s talk about clutter. This is one of the largest sources of overwhelm and fatigue for a family. However, it is also one of the most challenging sources of overwhelm to control or remove all together. So, what is the solution?
The solution is that we must de-clutter and create intentional systems to create a more sustainable, organized home. This alone will allow you to spend more time with your family.
Want to get started? Lets DIVE in!
In order to correct the problem, we need to understand why the problem exists. There are several different causes to clutter. We will discuss the most common and easy solutions to de-clutter for good!
What are the most common reasons for clutter?
Well, I am glad you asked! The most common reasons for clutter are the following (take notes): the item/items do not have a home, you have more stuff then you need, or you do not have a good system in place.
What are my solutions?
Re-Homing Your Clutter
We need to take a deep, dive into the things we are noticing around us. Take note of the common items you are tripping over, that consistently pile up on the counter or table, and that never seem to have a home!
Do you have a list?
Good. Now, let’s take a little deeper dive into this list.
Take a look at each object. Ask yourself and answer honestly. It is okay to talk to yourself. Does this item serve me or my family?
If the answer is yes, then we need to ask ourselves, where would it make the most sense to store this belonging for my family to use? I encourage you to take lead on this initiative and ask your family members as well. Where does your family need to have access to this item? Often if the object continues to land in a certain place, then that may be the location that your family members will go to find it. So, give it a HOME.
If the answer is no, that is okay too! Then re-home that belonging. If it is in good condition, then give it to Good Will or another organization of your choice.
You have TOO much Stuff
I think in many cases we have too much stuff. I for one, know that my family has too much stuff. Why organize your clutter? That just leads to a vicious cycle of more clutter.
For some, you may want to consider purging or pairing down. You may want to consider being a minimalist or striving for your own version of minimalism. Regardless of the direction you chose, you will need to follow a similar process to rehoming.
Make a plan to go from room to room, closet to closet, etc. This can take more time, but once it is done your home will feel and look better. Set a date of when you want to complete the work by. Try to stick to your goal.
As you go through your belongings, ask yourself a simple question. You guessed it! Does this serve you or your family?
If the answer is yes, then great. Find a great location for this item. Organization is process, so it may take time until you find the right location that will encourage the use of the object and will keep it from turning into clutter.
If the answer is no, then donate it, only if it is in good condition. Items in poor condition really do not serve you or your family.
No System, More Clutter
It is important that your home, each room, cupboard, and closet have an organization system. These systems do not need to be complex or cost a ton of money. Then need to meet your family’s needs and create a clutter free environment.
How do I do this on my own?
With any system, I encourage you to purge, organize, and repeat. It is as simple as washing your hair. Well, maybe not that simple. But it becomes easier the more you do it.
First, make a plan and set a budget for each room. I encourage people to set a date. You may want to consider scheduling a party or a get together on this date to motivate you to cross that finish line. A budget helps you to NOT over spend.
Then go room by room, closet by closet, and purge belongings that do not serve you. One you are done purging. Start trying to determine where the belongings you want to keep should go. They should go in a place that makes sense to how the family uses them. There are no right or wrong answers. This is personal.
Once you have determined where the item goes, determine if it is neatly be placed back in the location. Does it need a bin? A label? Some form of support organizational tool to keep it from spilling out of it home?
Purchase what is needed, label what you can, and maintain.
You did it!
Can you guess what the three steps are to de-clutter your home for good?
You are a genius! Yes!
- Determine if the belonging serves you or your family.
- Purge what does not serve you or your family
You are on a roll. So, I will let you in on a secret for maintenance success.
Do you remember all of the items that did not serve your family? Everything that needed to be purged and re-homed outside of your home?
Okay. Now, go through that list. Think about why you purchased it or how it got into your home. Did they come in as gifts? Are they splurge purchases at the dollar spot at Target? What caused the clutter to begin with?
Let me tell you a secret.
Once you determine the greater cause for the clutter, then you can determine how to prevent it from coming into your home anyway!
So, let’s say your children receive more toys than they need! Fact. This is a source of your clutter.
So, what is the solution?
Well, you can go about this a couple of ways.
After all birthdays, holidays, etc. you could go through the toys and purge. Get rid of things that do not serve your child. Maybe they have outgrown them. Maybe they are in poor condition. Or maybe it is just time for some new things.
Another solution is to ask your family members for something your child needs. Maybe it is clothes, socks, or PJs. Yes, not the most enjoyable gift, but important.
Experience gifts are also a great option. Instead of purchasing a toy for the child, ask your family to take the child somewhere. Maybe they take them to a movie, to the park, or a museum. Building lasting memories, strengthening relationships, and NO CLUTTER!
Regardless of your current season of life, you may look around and see clutter. The source may look different for each of you. The solution may be different. You may have a different threshold for clutter than I. That is okay. At the end of the day, I want to help you enjoy your home and your life to the highest potential. I want to help you receive the gift of more time with your family and less overwhelm. To go from surviving to thriving!
Thank you for intentionally stopping by!