Everyone thinks getting organized means living some austere or perfec life where you put everything away instantly and everything is always sparkling clean. I don't know about you, but I sure don't live that way nor would I want to. Kudos to those who do, but this blog isn't about the neatniks and perfectionists. This blog is for people living busy lives who just want to make things a little easier for themselves. This blog is also for people who are struggling with health issues and a lack of energy...I battled a serious illness last year and had to really change some of the ways I could get and stay organized and clean and I want to share those tips with you, whether you're healthy but don't love cleaning or are struggling to feel like you can still live like a human. So here are some simple, quick tips for those who want their space to at least be "good enough".
1. Tackle High Traffic Areas: Hall entryway, living room, kitchen, bathroom. These are places we all frequent and where guests tend to show up so at least do the bare minimum (like vacuuming) to keep it looking nice. Most of the time just keeping these areas vacuumed or swept and free of clutter will do it. If you can only vacuum or sweep one room at a time because you're too tired or you don't have enough time, that's fine. Do one room per day and you'll still keep it clean enough!
2. Laundry vs. Clothing...: You know what I mean. Most of us have 1 laundry basket where we put all our clothes in but sometimes that gets overcrowded. It also means sometimes we put something in our laundry that isn't necessarily all that dirty or we just don't feel like having to fold it or hang it and put it away right then. So invest in another laundry basket to keep either overflow or those clothes that may still have one more wear in them yet- this way they are away from the dirty laundry like your underwear so they're still wearable but they aren't sitting on your chair in a big ball of clutter for all to see.
3. Shoes and Keys - Designate a Spot!: Everyone coming through your door will have shoes and keys with them. You'll also probably want them to take off their shoes immediately (unless you like cleaning up extra dirt, grime and germs) but if there's not a designated area for these items it means clutter, chaos and time wasted. Use a small bowl or a hook for the keys and make it a habit to drop them there immediately upon walking in the door. If you or your spouse have loose change, have a bowl to collect anything from your pockets. Have a spot where you can take off your shoes near your entryway to cut down on tracking dirt in - cubby's, shoe racks, and hanging shoe racks are some great ideas for containing shoe clutter.
4. Make Your Bed!: Your bed is the biggest thing in your bedroom. Your bedroom is the place where you go to rejuvenate and rest so even if it's just pulling up the covers,an attempt to make your bed will help transform your bedroom into a calmer, less cluttered area. It's a good habit to get into and will only take you 20 seconds or less... unless you have a million throw pillows, in which case, I ask why you would do that to yourself? That's just more work for you now isn't it?
5. Wipe Down Sinks After Each Use: I don't know why, but my sink looks dirty 2 seconds after I've used it. I don't enjoy cleaning so I do a major job once a week to clean my bathroom but the rest of the time I just quickly run a cloth over the area to keep it looking clean. It takes 5 seconds and keeps the sink and bathroom looking so much cleaner. This works great for your kitchen as well.
6. You Don't Have to Choose All or Nothing: Do some cleaning and clear clutter in 5 minute spurts if that's all you have. Just decide (by yourself or with your family as a whole) to tackle one area for even 5 minutes. You'll see a big difference and you'll feel better. Last year I was bedridden and often did not have the energy to do much of anything so I had to choose this as my only option. As a result, I was able to keep my space looking decent and clean enough until I had enough energy to tackle larger projects. So trust me, a little can go a long way...not just in cleanliness but just in making you feel like you live in a nice space and are worth the effort...because you are worth the effort.