You don’t need 20 things that do the same thing. Clear your head space by dejunking your physical space.
It’s easy to let things pile in your home without you noticing. We are often so caught up in the day-to-day grind and so sentimental about our physical possessions that before long, we find ourselves suddenly stuck with 10 pots, 30 food containers, an overflowing wardrobe and a coffee table piled high with catalogues, old magazines, loose change and random knick-knacks. Before the mess becomes worthy of an episode in Hoarders, here are some tips to help you declutter and organise your stuff so it can be a space you actually want to spend time in.
(Also read: 6 Ways To Deal With Clothes You Don’t Want)
1. Have a system
When organising your closet, arrange your pieces by grouping the same shades together. Better yet – within each colour, hang your items by the type of clothing. Use multi-hangers to maximise space. Colour code your folded clothes as well, and make sure they are all folded the same way. Not only is it much neater this way, it’s also aesthetically pleasing. As for bags, instead of leaving them all over the floor, hang them on a coat rack or store them in cubby holes.
2. Invest in a good bed
Get a bed that has storage space so you can conceal all the bulky and unsightly things cluttering your bedroom. Depending on your tastes, you can get those that have drawers or shelves built into the bed frame, or one that allows you to lift up your mattress for concealed storage beneath. Perfect for stuff you rarely use, such as extra sheets and comforters, pillows, occasion dresses and winter wear.
3. Minimalist is best
Flip through any design or home décor magazine, and you’d notice they all have one thing in common: The rooms are pared-back, fresh and neat as a button. Ultimately the rule is this: Simplify simplify simplify. Keep surfaces of night stands, tables and cupboards clear of clutter. Throw things you do not need and keep out of sight others you do need. Contain messes by storing them in baskets, trays or bowls. Which brings us to the next point…
(Also read: How to Clean Your Closet Like a Pro)
4. Be disciplined
Set aside some time every week (at least 15 to 30 minutes) decluttering your house – that means getting rid of bills, pamphlets, loose change, newspapers, plastic bags and other random items lying around the house. Arrange your stuff neatly and put things back to where they belong. Also, try throwing out or donating one item a week.
5. Stop buying things
Before you hand your credit card over, always think about whether you need the item or whether it’s simply an impulse purchase. If there’s a constant inflow of objects, all your decluttering efforts would come to a naught. If you must get it, exercise a one-in-one-out policy, where if you’re purchasing a new outfit or a new book, you’d have to get rid of a similar item in your home.
(Also read: Where to Donate Your Pre-loved Stuff)
6. Get creative with storage
Make use of blank wall space by installing wall hooks or suspended shelves and cubby holes. You can also hang a metal grid, which is perfect for displaying jewellery, photos or notes. If you have an unattractive bomb shelter door that you wish to hide, consider building a chalkboard or magnet wall over it that doubles up as a concealed shoe rack when you swing it open.
7. Don’t fall into a trap
Trust me, when you tell yourself “it might come in handy one day”, it probably won’t. The next time you see it will be five years later, buried under more items and gathering cobwebs. So be ruthless and practical when you’re assessing whether to throw things out. Don’t be afraid to let go, and don’t be tempted to over-equip your home, especially your kitchen. Rid that space of excess – maintaining just one or two items for each use is enough to keep your home functioning. Any more, and you won’t be able to find it anyway.