Remove clutter and improve your outlook
Maybe Sunday is the day you reserve for housecleaning. But it seems like whether you do a general straightening up/surface clean or a full blown cleansing of scrubbing and vacuuming, by Tuesday you’re again looking at a cluttered home. With the burnout of everything else you do and your lack of free time after work, it’s hard to care. But there are a few things you can do that require little effort that will help maintain an orderly appearance for your home.
First, when buying something consider how it will be used. Is it something you really need? How often will you use it? Where will you use it? Will you use it and leave it on the couch, where it will remain untouched indefinitely? Sometimes when you buy a new product, you may handle it once on the day you purchase it. It may have served its purpose then, but since it’s new and you made an investment in it, you don’t want to put it away. It seems premature. Now we could be talking about anything, a book, a record, a game, whatever… but the point is, it now adds to the clutter. Don’t hesitate to put things away, even if they’re new. You can retrieve it in seconds at a moment’s notice, it’s no big deal.
Devise a storage system. Maybe it’s an existing cabinet, unused bureau or a newly purchased large storage box with drawers that you can specify for certain items. Label the drawers if possible. For instance you could designate as such, “Magazines and Books” “Toys and Games” or “Car Paperwork and Greeting Cards”. Before you know it, all that stuff that’s been lying around is neatly put away.
Of course, a number one offender of clutter is our own laziness. That and clothes. Maybe you come from work and just start stripping down, throwing your wares about with reckless abandon. Okay, this tip is hardly ingenious and purely common sense, but sometimes reading something makes it a little more tangible. Toss the dirty clothes in a laundry basket (which, ideally should be out of sight, like in a closet). Few people have hampers anymore, but if you have one, put it to use. If your shirt and pants are clean enough to be re-worn, shake them out hang them back up, neatly. Or, as in the case with pants, fold them nicely and put them away until next use. Before you know it, the only thing that will be strewn about your apartment will be the sunlight from your new radiant outlook.
Dishes and clutter go hand in hand, don’t they? Some people have an excellent motivator not to have dirty dishes lying around – ants. Seriously, if you leave a cereal bowl out that still has a little milk it and the next day you’re dealing with an ant invasion, why WOULDN’T you change your habits? You’re creating more work for yourself and it’s gross! Even if you don’t have ants, don’t leave dishes around. That may be the worst offence to civilized taste. You can still be lazy. Get a dish rack that fits in the sink. Give the dirty dish a once over rinse and plop it in there. Or get the water blaring hot and wash it with a single high powered rinse, no machine required. Of course, if you have a dishwasher, how hard is it to put your stuff in there? It’s not hard. At all. And it takes two seconds.
The funny thing is, you could literally get off the recliner and execute most of these steps within minutes. A cluttered home has a subconscious negative effect, and it doesn’t help how you feel about yourself if you have guests that pop over suddenly. No one wants to be seen as a slob. It can be hard to find the motivation, but anything you do that improves your environment would likely improve your mood. And that’s a goal worth achieving.