Want to start 2010 off on an uncluttered path? Try these seven activities to get you headed in the right direction:
- Get an annual physical, sufficient sleep each night, exercise regularly, and eat healthy foods. If you’re sick or depleted of energy, you will have great difficulty achieving your other uncluttered goals. Work on these basics to stay motivated, energized, healthy, and in a positive mood.
- Find a home for your keys. Stop wasting time hunting for your keys each time you leave the house. Put a hook, cup, or a storage container that matches your decor near the entrance to your home as a place where you can always set your keys. Immediately when you come home, deposit your keys into their spot.
- Get ready for bed an hour before you plan to sleep. Your clothes are more likely to make it into the hamper if the lights are on and you’re not exhausted. Also, you can see how full your hamper is and if you need to schedule time to do a load of laundry. The act of having a bedtime routine prepares you for sleep so that you can fall asleep when you eventually crawl into bed.
- Commit to 30 minutes of chores an evening. Spend 10 minutes each night doing a general pickup around the house, then focus for 20 minutes on a specific room. Monday night might be the living room and Tuesday the kitchen, etc. After a few weeks of this routine, you may even be able to cut your time down to just 20 minutes an evening. Have everyone in the house participate.
- Sort through your linens in your linen closet. Get rid of any damaged, stained, or frayed towels and sheets. Repurpose the old ones as cleaning rags or donate them to your local animal shelter.
- Play the dot game. Purchase a package of removable dots from your local office supply store. Place dots on all of your small appliances in your kitchen. As you use the appliance, remove the dot. In six months, strongly consider getting rid of any appliance that still have dots on them. This is also great to do with young children’s toys and clothing (put the dots on the hanger or the label).
- Explore the “under” places. When was the last time you went through the items under your bed? Under your kids’ beds? Peeked under your dressers, sideboards, couch, or other furniture with feet? Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean forgotten clutter might be lurking in these dark spaces.
Good luck, and happy uncluttering in 2010!