5 Ways to be Productive in Your Home
Simply speaking, being organized in your home means for everything to have a place and to be put back there when not in use.
I know, you are saying this is a crazy bunch of nonsense when you have a family. Having a husband and two young kids, I totally get it. Trust me when I say my 10 year old will walk over something on the floor 400 times and never see it. Then, when I bring it to his attention, I have to specifically ask him to pick it up before the thought crosses his mind.
Studies have been done which suggest living in clutter can increase your stress level. An increased stress level can impact your productivity.
To prepare for being organized each day, an overhaul should be done so that you start with a clean slate. I know this one sounds daunting. Give yourself a day or more for each room to clear things out to donate, trash/recycle or keep. As you go through each room, decide where everything will be placed or stored. Go through every closet, drawer, clean up the cheerios behind the bookcase and just make it a clean slate. Once everything has a home, you will be more likely to ensure it gets back to its home at the end of the day.
Make Your Bed
This may sound trite. “Why make the bed when you will be getting back into it tonight?” I’ve heard it before and in my own home. However, the act of making your bed is the first act of accomplishment in your day. It gives you a sense of things coming together in your home and being tidy. Bonus, you have a lovely bed to enter at the end of the evening. Folding down the blankets at the end of the evening prepares your mind for restful sleep.
Clean Up as you Mess Up
We likely heard this from our parents growing up. “If you get it out, put it back.” Sometimes, in the busyness of the morning routine, we can leave things lying around everywhere. Coming back into a home that is cluttered will increase your anxiety and stress. Cleaning up as you go will allow you to walk into a clutter free home at the end of the day when you are tired and want to relax. So, put away that hair dryer, wipe off the sink, put your dishes in the dishwasher, etc. As you walk out of the door, you will feel productive and ready to face your day and know you will come home to a tidy house to relax in the evening.
Put Things Away as they Enter the House
As something enters the house, it should be put in its place immediately. If it is junk mail, put it right in the recycle bin. Bills or other needed paperwork, should have a folder or bin designated for that type of mail. See my post on paper clutter here.
Kids’ homework is always a daunting thing. Empty folders each day and throw away anything that is not needed. I tend to keep completed homework/tests until the end of the school year in case they need to be referred to at the end of the year. Please see my post about homework storage here.
Purchases should find a home quickly as well. Typically, when we buy something, we know what we are using it for in our home. However, it is good to have a storage area as a temporary home for anything we do not know what to do with yet or that will be leaving the home (i.e. gifts or donations). If you follow my blog, you know I am a blogger. I have a ton of craft supplies. However, everything has a home. It can be done, I promise.
Clean the Kitchen and Main Living Space Every Evening
My home is certainly not a show home. I love that our home is “lived in” and filled with things that tell you something about each person living here. That’s what makes a house a home. My kids love to drag bins and tubs of toys to the living room every day and scatter them to the four winds. I typically shuffle in our living room instead of taking steps. Legos and Barbie shoes are vicious on feet. But, at the end of the day, everything has to be put back in its designated place. This is the job of the kiddos. Bonus, they learn the art of cleaning up after themselves. Win-Win!!!
Before heading to bed each evening, try to do the following list. It will make your morning so much less stressful. It really only takes a few minutes.
- Put dishes in the dishwasher or hand wash.
- Wipe down the kitchen sink and put any dish cloths in the laundry.
- Make sure everything is cleared from the kitchen counter and table that is not supposed to be there.
- Pick up anything that is out of place in the main living area (blankets, books, etc.)
- Toys should be put away (can be done by the kids as soon as they are capable of carrying them to the bins)
Going to bed with a tidy house will make tackling the morning routine so much easier. Mornings tend to be chaotic and can get out of hand quickly. If you wake up to a clean slate, you will feel more relaxed and ready to hit the day head on.