By Ehren Caudill
We’ve all been there. Whether it’s because of your kids, your busy life, or just your own bad habits, it can be difficult to keep everything organized in your house. Papers pile up, your children’s shoes collect by the front door, and there’s a never-ending stream of stuff flowing into –but not out of– your home. Is it any wonder that you can’t keep your house clean?
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. Once you identify where the problem points are (and chances are, there are probably a few of them), you’ll be able to create a system that works specifically for you and your family’s needs. If you need some help assessing the situation, these tips might help you determine what the problems are, and more importantly, how to fix them.
You Have Way Too Much Stuff
It’s estimated that the average U.S. home contains over 300,000 items. So, it’s no wonder that you can’t seem to control the clutter. If every time you put things away it seems to come undone, it’s probably because you have too much stuff. That’s why the first step is to identify what’s unnecessary in your home. If you haven’t touched something in a month (or even two weeks), odds are you don’t need it. This could be anything from clothes to that greeting card you received ten years ago. Once you’ve identified all of your stuff, you can decide what to keep, what to donate, and what can be tossed in the trash.
You Don’t Know Where to Begin
If your home feels like a disaster, it can be difficult to decide where and or even how to start. That’s why you need to have a plan of action. Begin with one room, start with a closet or even just a corner of the room. If that’s too much, just start with a shelf or a drawer! Go clockwise, organizing one section of the room at a time. You don’t have to organize the entire room in one day, but don’t move on to another section until the first section is done. You’ll be surprised at how much progress you make when you focus your efforts on smaller spaces.
You Don’t Have Time
For many people, the reason why they can’t keep their house clean is a matter of time. If this is the case, hiring a house cleaner to help keep your home in order might be a good first step. Even a good clean biweekly might help take some of the stress of a messy home off you. You may also consider hiring an organizer to help you establish a place for everything and make your cleaning routine a faster process.
You Need a Better System
For some people, clutter has everything to do with poor systems. Paper clutter can be problematic, so whenever you receive any kind of paper (whether it’s bills, receipts, mail, etc), deal with it right away. Throw away anything that’s not important and create files or establish folders for each item. Invest in a quality shredder and get rid of any papers that aren’t important.
Everyone Needs to Be On Board
While you can never expect others in your household to do things exactly as you would, it’s still important to communicate your desires for your family. Children especially should know what’s expected of them when it comes to cleaning. So, start small and give your kids small chores to do around the house, like emptying the dishwasher, putting away their clothes, or making their beds. Of course, you’ll need to be realistic and realize that you’re still going to have to clean up behind them from time to time. But as long as they’re learning the importance of cleaning up, everyone will gain something–and you’ll have less to do around the house.
Let’s face it: Keeping your house clean is something that you will have to do every day. But by putting some strategies in place, you can make the process a whole lot easier–and make your home sparkly clean, too.