How to Create a Clean, Calm Home (and keep it that way)

Collaborative Guest Post.

Modern lifestyles mean few of us have the luxury of spending hours on housework.


Well, if you feel like you’re always living in a muddle of possessions and wish you had time to get things sorted, cleaned up and organised, that’s exactly how it can seem. Cluttered surroundings can drag you down and cause stress where there shouldn’t be any.

For those of us with demanding jobs and families to juggle, the time challenge is real.

Making a start.

If the whole house needs some TLC as far as muddle goes, it can feel overwhelming. Instead of tackling the big jobs, start with something smaller so you get a quick feeling of reward. It could be a kitchen drawer, a child’s wardrobe, maybe just your pile of laundry or ironing.

Once you’ve sorted one area, make a pact with yourself to keep it as fresh as it is when you’ve finished. Just a minute or two each day might be enough if we’re talking about clearing kitchen surfaces or scooping toys into a basket.

Having tackled some low-hanging fruit and seen a bit of progress, move onto the more daunting muddle areas. Common problem areas are kitchen cabinets, the cupboard under the stairs, the garage, kid’s bedrooms, closets, bathrooms, or anywhere else you have tucked away where stuff gets put ‘just for now’.

Items in these areas can build up almost behind your back, so you end up with cupboards full of things you don’t use, and nowhere to put stuff you do use.

Sorting the Bigger Problems Areas.

While small areas can generally be sorted out in just a few minutes once you find the will to tackle it, emptying big cupboards to clear some space might take a couple of hours. Make a date with yourself to get it done.

Arm yourself with a few boxes and bin bags to sort stuff into:

  • A box for things you use and want to keep handy.
  • A box for things you love but don’t use.
  • A box or bag for the broken or definitely unloved items you’ll find.

With this sorting system you’ll quickly plough through the biggest problem areas. It can really help if you have somewhere to put the box of things you love but don’t use. Renting a self storage room is a good solution. Some facilities can help with boxes and have information and guides about getting the most out of self storage.

This also rescues you from hard decisions about whether to keep something or throw it out. If you’re at all unsure, put it in the box that’ll go into self storage. You can make a final decision later. The main aim is to clear out some space at home so you can get organised.

Strategic Self Storage

We all have possessions that don’t get used for months at a time because they’re seasonal. It might be clothing, garden furnishings or machines and equipment, including outdoor play items, sports kit, DIY tools, and a host of other stuff, not mentioning Christmas trees and decorations.

Your personal self storage can take the strain by letting you move all this stuff out of the house temporarily. As the seasons change, swap things out so you only ever have at home what you need for comfort or entertainment.

Local self storage facilities are everywhere and usually easy to get to, so fetching things back home isn’t a challenge.

Staying Organised

It’s an ongoing job, there’s no doubt. If you can, rope in all the family and encourage them to take responsibility for keeping their stuff tidy as well as helping in the communal areas.

On the practical side, once you’ve cleared drawers and cupboards of unused items, add drawer dividers to help keep similar items together.

You can also repurpose cereal boxes, gift boxes or plastic tubs as cheap and cheerful storage helpers.

Try and keep flat surfaces clear as this helps create a calm, spacious and clean feeling in the house. A regular blitz on kitchen counters, sideboards or shelves only takes a few minutes, but has a huge effect.

If you’ve sorted closets into seasonal clothing and put out of season items into self storage, arrange the wardrobe so there’s more space.

  • Hang an extra rail
  • Place a shoe rack in the bottom
  • Fix a couple of hooks or a rail inside the door to hang belts, ties, bags and accessories
  • Use shelf dividers on the top shelf if there is one.Install a plastic drawer tower under hanging items for extra space for smalls or folded items.

Having a system, however casual, can help keep things organised all over the house.

Cutting down the clutter not only makes the house feel bigger and airier, it’s also easier to keep clean and mentally liberating. Suddenly you can find stuff and begin creative projects without having to search for equipment or clear a space.

You’ll be more productive, feel calmer and less stressed, and that sense of wellbeing will spill over into all the other areas of your life. Give it a go, it’s worth it.