24 May 2012

Banish Clutter with Clutter-free Habits

Keeping a house clean and tidy is impossible if that house is full of clutter. You can't clean when you don't have clear spaces and dust and dirt love to hide in clutter. If you are struggling with keeping your house clean and tidy, and remember you only have to keep it to your standards, then perhaps you need to develop some Clutter-free habits.

1.  Don't let piles build up. Put things away as soon as you are finished with them. And teach other household members to do this too!

2.  Deal with things as soon as they come into the house. One of the most beautifully kept homes I have ever been in is home to a family of 13! Celia's secret is to handle things once and once only. Mail is sorted as soon as it comes in, junk to the recycle bin, bills to the Bill Paying Folder, school papers are signed and returned, newsletters filed, invitations RSVPd, shopping is put away, laundry actually comes into the house folded and is put away immediately.

3.  "A place for everything and everything in it's place." That old idiom works. Set a time each morning and evening when you prowl your home picking up the things that aren't in the right spot and return them to their home. It's impossible to keep things tidy if they have nowhere to live. And when everything in your home as a spot where it belongs, there is no excuse for anyone else to not put things away.

4.  De-clutter! Once you've found a place for everything you need and want, move the excess on. Donate, Freecycle, sell or just toss but don't keep the clutter.

I love the William Morris quote "have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful." Think of this as you de-clutter to make an unpleasant chore an very easy task.

It takes just 21 repetitions for something to become a habit so stick to the four clutter-free tips and develop four very good homemaking habits.


  1. I am almost 82 now, had 4 children, never had a clutter, now it is totally out of control, do not know where to start

  2. Perhaps spend 15 minutes a day in just one room or area of a room. Look at what's around and anything you don't need, want, like, use could be put aside, near the front door, ready to go to the op shop next time you go out (or someone else goes out). If it is broken beyond repair then put it straight into the recycle or rubbish bin. Doing a declutter in stages is so much easier than trying to tackle it all at once and getting overwhelmed. I try to do one area of our home each day - yesterday it was my desk, this morning I did a quick tidy and declutter of the cupboard in the bathroom. Neither took long and I feel better knowing they are tidy and everything is where it should be.


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