1. Clear Your Surfaces and Floor
Clear your surfaces and have as little on the floor as possible. In my home, I do have a few things on my surfaces, they’re not completely clear, but they are almost completely clear. The things that are still there, are there for a reason. And I’m gonna share how to decide if it should stay on a surface a bit later in the Article. And about the floor, with the exception of one box that I keep my yoga stuff in, my floors are clear and accessible everywhere in my home.
This Tip Works Great To Simplify Your Home For Two Reasons:
i. Clean Surfaces Make Cleaning Much Easier
First reason is that it makes everything much much easier to clean. The more stuff you have on your countertops, the more dust gathers in these areas. You have to pick them up, dust them off, clean underneath, and place them back again. Whereas if you have a simple, clear surface or countertop, you can just quickly wipe it off and it’s clean. And the same goes for cleaning the floor. I can easily vacuum and mop everywhere and I can just go underneath my couch, underneath my coffee table, underneath my bed, without having to move anything around. If you have lots of stuff stored on the floor, especially if it’s cloth material like those cloth storage thingies, dust is going to gather around there. And you have to pick it up, clean it, clean underneath it, put it back again. Whereas if you keep your floors as free as you can get them, cleaning is much easier.
ii. Clean Surfaces Are Very Relaxing
This tip works really well is that it is much more relaxing. Think of it like a spa. Spas are designed to be a very calming, relaxing environment. They want you to feel more at ease from the second you walk in. And one of the ways they do that, is keeping all the surfaces clear. There’s often very little stuff going on around you, they don’t use a lot of little accessories and things. And that’s so relaxing because it feels calm. Instead of having all this visual clutter around you, demanding your attention. So what I do is, with every item that’s on a surface, I ask myself. Is it just really beautiful and does it make me happy when I look at it. And most of the time, plants make the cut for me. Or, is it really functional and do I need it there. For example the coffee machine and tea kettle I keep them on my kitchen surface because I use them several times a day, especially the tea kettle. But the food processor I only use it about once or twice a week, so I keep that stored away. The next tip is something that I learned about the Konmari method that I found a little weird at first but now I really get it. And it’s also not very well known, I don’t hear a lot of people talking about it.
2. Be Careful With Written Words And Language
And That is to be careful with written words and language around your home. For example book covers, all have words of course. Also, lists on your refrigerator, things you want to do or groceries to get. If you look around your space, you can quickly find a lot of words and language around. And the thing with words is that when we see them, we want to read them. Our eye just goes there and it stays there until we’ve read it. And if course we get used to them so it’s not like we’re reading all the book labels in our book closet every time. But words can be distracting, especially if you’re sensitive to that kind of stuff. Now if you’re like, what? Haha then no worries, this tip just doesn’t resonate with you, we’ll move on to the next thing. And if this does resonate with you, then this is a quick thing that you can change to simplify your home.
3. Identify The Purpose Of Each Room
The third tip that greatly helps to simplify your home and have a home that makes sense, is to identify the purpose of each room. And it can also be 2 or 3 things. And then make sure that the stuff in that room, actually serves the purposes of that space. Let me explain this with an example. Take the bedroom. Now for me, the bedroom should be a space where I can relax and rest, so that’s one purpose. It’s also the space where I exercise most of the time, and where I meditate most of the time. So that’s another purpose. So I make sure that the things in that room serve those two purposes. Now a tv in the bedroom would not be beneficial for achieving these things. It doesn’t help with relaxing and resting, it’s actually the opposite. And it doesn’t help with exercising or meditating either. So because of that, we don’t have a tv in our bedroom. Now what I do have there, is my box with yoga stuff, and a meditation cussion. And also we keep a comfortable chair there where I can read a book and relax. We also keep the decoration very simple and minimal so there’s no distractions. Then the living room, is for relaxation and also entertainment and having people over. So the things in here contribute to those goals. And what I often see is that people keep things in certain rooms, just because they’re there. And actually they might work against what you want that room to be about. Whereas if you switch them to a different room, they make much more sense. So take a walk around your home and consider, what do I want this space to be about. And think of 2 of 3 big reasons max. And then whenever you find an item that doesn’t make sense there, move it somewhere where it does serve the purpose of that space. By the way I’m curious, do you guys have a tv in the bedroom and why, or why not? Now when you do this, you might come across some items that don’t make sense in that room, but really don’t make sense anywhere in your home.
4. Identify Problem areas And create A System For Them
Next tip to simplify your home and make it more clutterfree and minimalist is to identify problem areas and create a system for them. If you have more problem areas then pick one and start with that one. Because we want to keep things as easy as possible. So areas that tend to get messy, cluttered, or that just don’t make sense. For most people, paper clutter is one of those things. And making a system can greatly help to reduce clutter and make your home more simple. So collect all papers that are coming into your home in one place, have everyone put them there, and sort through them once a week for example. It doesn’t have to be a super inventive crazy system, it can be very simple solutions like this. Also, let’s say you have a room where clothes and laundry tend to get strewn about. Instead of trying to make yourself or the people you live with walk all the way to the laundry room, which won’t work most of the time, see if you can place a small extra hamper there instead. So make the space work for you. Same with kids toys. Keep a storage bin where they tend to pile up. So think of easy hacks you can do to find a solution to these problem areas.
5. Get Some Circulation Going
Lastly, Circulation. I am not an expert on feng shui, in fact I don’t know that much about it. But I do feel like it’s important for your space to be open and have some circulation going. You don’t want things to be stagnent. So something that I do is Opening up the windows and getting fresh air in your home is so nice, it makes everything feel much more clean and fresh and new. So if you have any areas that tend to get a little stuffy, open them up a bit and make sure to get some fresh air there regularly. Healthy air circulation is important for a number of things. It prevents build up of dust and mold and bacteria, it improves humidity levels, makes the air healthier to breath, and especially if you have allergies like me, it’s important to ventilate. And consider getting a plant, because plants make for really great natural air purifiers. They also provide that nature element and inviting more nature into my home environment just gives me more harmony and balance and calmness. Also, think about placement. If you have certain clutter blocks, or little corners where things just kind of form a block of random things, gathering dust, see if you can open them up. Because these cluttered areas, can be very draining and exhausting and stifle your energy and your creativity. because subconsiously, we feel responsible for our possessions, we have to manage them. So getting rid of these clutter blocks can really help to open up the space. We don’t want to be stagnant. We want the air and the energy to flow freely if possible (if that makes sense).