Even though the KonMari method has gained wild popularity in recent years, many of us are still drowning under piles of clutter. If clutter has you discouraged, here are the 3 things you need to know – plus 3 quick wins to get you started with decluttering!
It will affect your productivity
Whether it’s the crowded kitchen that slows down your meal prep, or the extraneous craft supplies falling out of the closet when you’re trying to do an art project with your kids, having a cluttered house will affect your productivity in one way or another.
Clutter costs you time because clutter tends to be:
- Searched for
Can you relate? I can’t tell you how many times I have wasted time searching for a component for our science experiment or trying to locate my hot glue gun for a craft.
Oh, and the many weekends or afternoons spent shuffling those items around or putting them in shelves in prettier baskets than before, hoping against hope that the prettier baskets will help corral the clutter better than the ugly baskets!
That’s insanity. Not actually getting to the root issue, but just re-organizing the same pile of junk over and over.
Please tell me I’m not the only one.
It will cause stress
Yes, clutter has been scientifically proven to also cause stress. The stress hormone, cortisol, increases when dealing with a cluttered home.
Clutter keeps you from being able to relax in your space. That extra stuff is not worth the effect on your body or emotions.
If you’re over the clutter, here’s the solution.
It’s worth it to take a day and declutter your space with the kids
Why do we feel like working on a pile of worksheets is time better spent that working as a team to declutter a space? Because let’s face it: decluttering is actually a life skill that will help your children.
No kid has ever said that they wished they had done more worksheets when they were younger.
But I’ve heard adults lament the fact that they were never taught how to declutter.
Don’t think you know how to get it done? Use the Declutter Cheatsheet for Teens. Work through it together and everyone in the house can participate!
Here are 3 Quick Wins to get you started!
Quick Win #1: Declutter a “hot spot” – this might be the kitchen counter, the table by the front door, or the coffee table. Where is that messy spot where piles live? Tackle that one spot right now, return everything to its place and create a system to stop the clutter from returning. Analyze why you’re creating a clutter magnet in the first place. Is it because you set the mail down instead of dealing with it right away? Decide how you’re going to prevent clutter build up in that ONE hot spot in the future.
Quick Win #2: Keep the kitchen countertops (mainly) empty – I know it’s not always possible to have empty countertops! And for many of us, that would make our kitchens too clinical. But, it’s probably also true that at least 50% of the stuff on our kitchen counters don’t need to be there. If you can declutter the counters twice a day (or at least at night), then you’ll wake up to beautifully uncluttered countertops and your whole house will feel clean (even if it isn’t!) Try it and see how it goes.
Quick Win #3: Declutter one drawer – Yes, this is totally doable. Don’t do a whole room at first. Just pick one drawer that’s really bugging you. It might be the junk drawer, the drawer in the bathroom, or your bedside table drawer. Do the classic decluttering method: trash, donate, relocate, or reorganize.
Once you’ve started with these quick wins, it will be much easier to keep going. And don’t forget to make it a family affair!
Get the Declutter Cheatsheet for Teens at 4onemore.com to keep the momentum going.
Abby is a former public school teacher, now homeschooling her five children. She’s in the trenches just like you and knows it can be challenging to be home with your kids all day while you struggle to keep up with the housework and educate your kids (and maybe even work on the side!). She blogs over at www.4onemore.com and hosts the Homeschool with Moxie podcast.