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  • Writer's pictureKevin Connors

How to Keep Your Home Organized Long Term

Updated: May 17

So you finally got your whole place organized and weeks or months later you look around and everything is a mess again. This is usually what happens for most busy people. Staying organized is easier than you think if you stick to a few rules.

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1. Declutter regularly: Start by decluttering your home. Get rid of items you no longer need or use. Donate or sell things that are in good condition but not useful to you anymore. Decluttering creates more space and reduces the need for excessive storage. Smitha Bhandari in her article on Web MD Mental Health Benefits of Decluttering, she asserts that "Untidy environments often increase stress for most people. In one study, women who described their homes with positive language had a lower level of the stress hormone cortisol than women who described their homes as cluttered or unfinished."

2. Create a routine: Develop a regular cleaning and organizing routine. Dedicate specific times each day or week to tackle different areas of your home. This will help prevent clutter from building up and make it easier to maintain an organized environment.

3. Have designated storage spaces: Assign specific places for different items. Use storage containers, baskets, and bins to keep things organized. Label them for easy identification. Having a designated spot for each item reduces the chances of items being misplaced or creating clutter.

4. One in, one out rule: Whenever you bring in a new item, try to remove an older one. This rule helps prevent accumulation and ensures that you only keep things that are useful or bring you joy.

5. Create a mail organization system: Designate an area for incoming mail, such as a letter tray or a wall-mounted organizer. Sort your mail as soon as it arrives and discard any unwanted items immediately. File important documents and bills in a designated filing system.

6. Implement a cleaning schedule: Keeping your home clean goes hand in hand with organization. Create a cleaning schedule for different tasks like dusting, vacuuming, and laundry. Break them down into smaller, manageable tasks, and spread them out throughout the week.

7. Tidy up daily: Set aside a few minutes each day to tidy up your home. Put things back in their designated places, wipe down surfaces, and straighten up any cluttered areas. By consistently tidying up, you prevent small messes from turning into major cleaning projects.

8. Involve the whole family: If you live with others, encourage everyone to participate in the organization process. Assign tasks and responsibilities to each family member, creating a sense of shared responsibility and cooperation.

9. Use technology to your advantage: There are numerous apps and tools available for organizing tasks, creating to-do lists, and setting reminders. Utilize these digital resources to help you stay on top of your organizing goals. See some specific tips on using technology to stay organized here.

10. Maintain a minimalist mindset: Embrace a minimalist lifestyle by evaluating your purchases and possessions. Prioritize quality over quantity, and think twice before buying new items. By adopting a minimalist mindset, you'll naturally reduce clutter and keep your home organized. A study from the National Library of Medicine found that "A minimalist lifestyle gives meaning to what matters in our lives and ultimately guides the whole of our lives. It enables people to concentrate on their priorities, which in turn increase focus and productivity by reducing stress and maintain clutter free environment."

Minimalism has gained popularity in recent years as younger generations are increasingly dealing with older generations that have a higher tendency to maintain an unhealthy attachment to their possessions, leading to cluttered environments that increase stress and depression and a general tendency to miss out on simpler joys in life like valuing relationships that can be damaged by chaotic environments. This tips in this article can help get you on a path to a less cluttered and more stress-free life.

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