Published: October 16, 2017
Every mom can relate to the “messy house, happy home” saying. With all the responsibilities that come with being a modern mom, having a spotless home is often low on our priority lists. However, decluttering your house doesn’t have to be a constant uphill battle. Here are a few clutter fighting tips for today’s busy, multitasking moms:
Enlist the help of your children and spouse
Keeping clutter picked up should never be the sole responsibility of one family member. Delegate tasks between family members so everyone plays their own small role in cleaning up the house. Sit down with your children and ask them their ideas on creative ways to store away their toys. Discuss with your spouse the ways in which a less cluttered house could improve both partners’ overall mood after a long day. When keeping the house clutter-free goes from a one-woman job to a group effort, the task becomes significantly less intimidating. Even if you have a toddler or two, they can pick up their toys each night before bed. Try making it a game!
Cut down on knickknacks
Clutter isn’t limited to misplaced toys and discarded keys. Decorative candles, old magazines, duplicate school supplies, unflattering photos, unimportant paperwork, broken electronics—these small items add up to create a mountain of unnecessary clutter. Think about the 90-day rule. If you haven’t used the item in the previous 90 days or don’t plan to use it in the next 90 days, get rid of it! Follow a similar thought process when buying new household items. Will you really use it or will it just become another object sitting and collecting dust? If you want more tips on this, try reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.
Not every room in the house needs to be constantly clutter-free. Areas such as the kitchen and living room should be decluttered more often than a playroom or child’s bedroom. Some rooms may be more of problem areas than others. Decide which spaces need to be decluttered daily, weekly, and monthly. Your dining room table needs to be cleared off every night before dinner, but your guest room might only need a monthly decluttering session.
Give everything its own storage place
The easiest way to continuously fight clutter is to make sure everything that could become clutter has its own storage area. You’ve already purged the unnecessary items, now find appropriate homes for everything else. Invest in a fun toy storage box or shelving for your children's rooms. Sort through closet space and assign one shelf for towels, one for sheets, etc. Add some hooks and a storage seat to your entryway so backpacks, coats, shoes and purses don’t get left on counters and furniture. Get creative and build some DIY storage solutions that work with your home’s design.
Stop leaving things on the floor
When you’re simultaneously cooking dinner, responding to a work email, doing laundry and chasing after small children, it’s easy to set something down on the floor and forget about it. Make it a household rule that nothing gets left sitting on the floor if it's not in use. That means that laundry basket full of clean clothes should be folded and put away. Your husband’s shoes need to be carried into the bedroom closet. If it isn't a rug, lamp or furniture, it shouldn’t be taking up floor space. Break the habit of saying “I’ll come back to this later” and leaving something sitting on the floor for the next week.
Remember, decluttering your home isn’t a one-step process. It’s an ongoing strategy. However, once you create a plan to fight clutter, you’ll find you have more space and time to enjoy with family and friends.