Moving is a lot of work. Once you finally get all those boxes unpacked, relief is tangled with pride and… intimidation. Everything is put away. No clutter. You have worked so hard and you deserve this peace. How will you keep your well-earned order? Here are a few tips to keep it clean.
1. Every other tip depends on this one:
Make it easy. The best laid plans have no chance against clutter creep if the plan isn’t easy. Clutter happens when you have to think for more than a second about where to put something. So do the thinking ahead of time.
2. Think about your major clutter areas.
A giant pile of shoes by the door? Make sure you have a place for shoes- and make sure it is big enough for your household. Mail mountains? If you don’t want to sort bills as soon as you get home from work, find or make a place for mail and give future you a break by junking the junk mail immediately. Wherever the mail is going to be, make sure there is a trash can too.
3. Make putting things away intuitive.
When you clean you might put the remotes by the TV, but that is not where you’ll put them when you are watching. Home for the remotes might be a basket, a box, a shelf on the coffee table, or even a large vase, depending on your style. Whatever it is, place it close to where you are when you’re watching. Likewise, magazines. Where do you read them? That is where they go.
4. Commit to small, realistic habit changes.
Your peace of mind is worth it. Just don’t over-promise or you will be overwhelmed and discouraged. Small. Is your sink a problem? Maybe you can commit to emptying the dishwasher every night. Then dishes can go straight into the dishwasher and keep that sink clean. Small change; big clutter victory.
Moving is a great time to shed clutter. Going forward, make it easy. Get a bin for Stuff You Don’t Use. Once a month, or whenever it is full, give it away. Shelters need stuff. Thrift stores like stuff. Consignment shops might even pay you for stuff. Don’t keep the stuff.
Embrace the peace found in order. You worked for it and it is yours to keep. You’ve already done the hard part. Now, a few thoughtful choices, and you can simply enjoy it.