Homes tend to get cluttered, but if you know how to organize clutter, you will always know where everything is and have a neat and tidy home. Moreover, a messy home may lead to social problems, because you will always find excuses not to have people over and always seem to be apologizing if you have unexpected guests.
Wherever you start, take cleaning supplies as well as some bags or boxes with you to remove the things you don’t need.
Bathroom — go through all the cupboards and remove items that have expired, those you have never used and those you never will use. If you have hairbrushes and combs in the bathroom, clean and wash them. Throw away expired medicines, and refresh your first-aid box. Once you have decluttered the room, clean and arrange everything left.
Kitchen — this room may need a great deal of work because of the sheer number of storage cabinets available. You will obviously need to keep your crockery, cutlery, pots and pans, but make sure that they are clean, and re-arrange them if doing so can create more space. Again, go through food items and throw away anything that is past its expiration date. If you have opened cartons, decant the stuff into glass or plastic jars or boxes.
One of the most time-consuming chores is cleaning out the refrigerator and freezer. But this is one of the most important jobs, because you may have foods that are growing fungus, once-fresh stuff that has dried and wilted and is now unusable, bottles and cans — opened or unopened — that are way past their “best before” date. The freezer, too, needs a thorough going over as foods stored too long may develop freezer burn or otherwise lose much of their nutritional value and taste appeal.
Living Room — this room probably contains your mail, flyers, books, newspapers, magazines, movies, DVDs, collectibles and lots of miscellaneous stuff. Keep all your important mail organized and in a safe place, and throw away unwanted mail. Keep only the current newspapers and magazines, and put the rest away (perhaps in the garage) for recycling. Give unneeded books to the library, and arrange the rest neatly in a bookcase or on shelves. Store DVDs, CDs and other media in drawers or in attractive storage boxes. If you have lots of cable lying around, put it away in a small box. Keep on doing this bit by bit, and you will have taken major steps on how to organize your clutter.
Bedroom — Don’t leave clothes, shoes and towels lying around. Put away clothes you are going to wear again on hangers and put them in your closet. If clothes need laundering or dry-cleaning, sort them out immediately as you take them off. The same goes for shoes — before taking out one pair, replace the used pair. Hang towels in the bathroom or put them into the wash. Arrange your beside tables neatly, with as little stuff as possible.
Kids’ Stuff — Whether you have small children or teens, you have to expect some clutter. While older children should be responsible for keeping their rooms tidy, you may have to pick up after smaller children. Infants come with lots of clutter, so there may well be toys, feeding bottles or plates and other accoutrements lying around — you simply have to learn how to organize your clutter, clear up after them and remind yourself that, all too soon, they’ll be growing up and can be taught to pick up after themselves.
When you declutter your house and make it neat and inviting, you will enjoy a feeling of achievement. Knowing how to organize clutter is important, but you also need to learn to throw things away, so you don’t have too much stuff in the first place.