Making your space feel less cluttered

Whether you’re tired of misplacing items or climbing over piles of toys left across the floor, having a cluttered space can affect us in many ways.  Being surrounded by clutter has an impact on how we’re feeling.  A 2016 Cornell University study (SOURCE) suggests that stress triggered by clutter can impact our coping mechanisms, leading us to eat more junk food, oversleep, and engage in more binge-watching activities.  Organizing our space, especially in our homes, can help you create more relaxing environment for yourself.  Read some of the tips below to get you started on your organizational journey.

Tips for how to declutter your space:

1.       Get rid of trash

The first step you should do is to take a garbage bag and throw away that is garbage. Give yourself some momentum by removing any obvious garbage you have laying around, junk mail, rotten foods, delivery packaging and boxes.  Create more space for yourself by taking out the garbage.

2.       Clear the floors

Remove everything from the floor.  Toys, clothes, electronics, controllers, etc.can clutter up your space, and make it appear that you have less room than you have.

3.       Put away laundry clothes immediately

I’ve certainly fallen into the pattern of leaving my folded clothes on my bed and moving them between other surfaces as Ineed to use them but never into its correct spots.   This leaves a pile everywhere, rather having your clothes in the closet or drawers.  Once the clothes are finished in the dryer, fold them up and put them away into the correct spots.  

4.       Create some breathing room

Although clothes should be placed into their correct spots like closets and drawers, it’s also important to not over stuff these places.  When you have to remove items just to sort and sift through them, it leads to a lot of overflow where clothes will end up on the floor, chairs, or on top of the dresser.  Based on the Pareto Principle, we tend to only wear 20% of the clothes we own and so 80% of it is left hidden and stashed away taking up important space. 

5.       Straighten your furniture

Aligning your dining room chairs, can help create a neater visual space.  Another is aligning your couch and coffee table.

6.       Putting things back into place

This is inclusive with both food and things.  Boardgames, books, kitchen utensils, shoes, etc.  Once you’re done with them, make it a habit to put it back to where it needs to go. Clutter piles will begin to build once there is something out of place.  Nip the habit in the bud before it starts to spread.

7.       Clear the surface areas

This includes your dining tables, workstations, shelves, and table stands.  Use baskets to keep items and various knickknacks in one place on top of these surfaces to keep them organized and in one place.  

Starting these steps can feel like a large lifestyle change!  However, you do not have to, nor is it suggested to do it all at once.  Habits are habits because you spend time doing the same repetitive actions daily.  If you try to make a big change too quickly, it will most likely not stick.  Slowly start building this into your daily routine. Do some decluttering activities 10 minutes a day, which can effectively start to build momentum.  With 10 minutes a day, it results to 5 hours a month, and about 50 hours in 300 days!

Happy Organizing!