Minimize the Mess in 2017

Messy workplace

The beginning of a new year can be a time to start fresh with many aspects of your life, the contents of your home being one of them. It’s no secret that minimizing the items in the space you live in can be a great way to reduce stress and anxiety but starting the process is not always easy.

Minimizing the mess in your home doesn’t have to be done in one day. In fact, studies show that this process is better installed in parts, giving the homeowner time to properly place and discard of those belongings.

Why Should You Do It?

Less Stress. Having a messy house serves as a constant reminder for what must be done. This alone can cause a person to develop stress associated with home and this can translate to every aspect of your life.

Save Time. According to the US News and World Report, we spend one year of our lifetime looking for misplaced items. ONE YEAR! Having a designated place for each item in your home gives you piece of mind and saves you time.

More Storage. When sorting through clutter, 80% of what we keep is never used (National Association of Professional Organizers). Freeing up space, especially if space is limited, not only helps your stress levels, but your organizational levels as well.

How Do You Do It?

Start Small. Rome wasn’t built in a day and reducing a lifetime of possessions won’t happen quickly either. Pick a room and start with a corner, a shelf, a drawer and then move along the room from there. Divide the room into zones if that helps. Remember, it’s a process.

Make Piles. Start a stack in the specific room that you are working in. A popular choice is to make 3 piles:

- Keep

- Giveaway

- Trash

A general rule is that if it hasn’t been worn in 6 months or used in one year that it should be given away or discarded of. There are outliers to this rule but generally the things we need most, we use most.

Reduce Sentiment. When looking through belongings it’s easy to get wrapped up in the moments they represent. Find ways to keep those that are truly meaningful (for example: scan in photos for digital copies) and let go of the rest. Find some way to store these items in a large container in storage or decorative container in house to keep safe. This way you have all memorabilia in one area as not to take up so much space.

Get Organized. When you find that you have cleared out the old and are ready to put together your new room then it’s time to get organized. Try to keep surfaces clean and find storage containers that match home décor so that storage can be easy and attractive. Giving every item in your residence its own home helps you to locate these items and ultimately helps you stay organized.

Move On. Once a room is finished – it’s finished! Don’t get caught up in the theory of perfection when it comes to cleaning or "finishing" your home. This is a continuous process.

Commit. The final step in minimizing the mess at home is commitment. Become accustomed to following the one-in-one-out rule or similar policy, pick a room to organize once a month, clean certain rooms on specific days of the week – the list goes on but whatever you choose, stay true to keeping your home clutter free.