Sometimes I wonder how some moms can keep up with all of the tasks at hand. I suppose I don’t really know if this type of mom exists, but I do know that some moms have their home in a bit more order than others. This is not to shame anyone at all.
I don’t think I or anyone else is better than any other mom. But, I do feel that having an organized home and life can help you to feel more in control, to feel more at peace, and to reduce the chaos or tension that you may feel. None of us are perfect and we all have room to grow. There is a fine balance between accepting yourself and working on self-improvement.
I would say that I am somewhere in the middle on the continuum of super clean and organized and extremely cluttered and messy. I have had to teach myself certain household management tasks since I’ve been an adult and especially since I’ve been a parent. It hasn’t been easy, but I do believe that learning good home organization habits is beneficial to how you feel, how you feel about your home, your life, your family, and yourself.
Here are 12 home organization tasks that you could complete to reduce the chaos you may feel and also increase the feeling of calm that a lot of us moms desire. Depending on your personality and how much time you have available, you could try to do one task a week making this about a 3-month plan, or you could just choose one to do as your time allows. I would suggest completing at least one task per week.
#1. Sort through all of your papers
Throw away as much as possible. Get some files, label them, and only put that category of papers in the designated file. Put all the papers in a filing cabinet. You can also purchase a portable plastic filing storage container at a local store (or online) for a fairly reasonable price if you don’t have a filing cabinet. Here is an example.
Amazon Filing Storage Cabinet Portable
#2. Declutter toys
This can be a challenge if you haven’t done it in awhile. The goal is to have a fairly manageable amount of toys. Throw away anything broken, and get rid of anything that your kids have not used in a long time or wouldn’t really have much interest in anymore.
Try sorting the toys into categories and putting each category into its own storage container of some sort. Also, try keeping the toys away from the main living area if at all possible. This can decrease your stress level when you are trying to relax or simply just trying to walk through the house. I’ve lived in places where this was a possibility and other places it wasn’t. It just depends on your space.
#3. Purge dishes
Sort through your kitchen dishes. Keep only what you need (maybe a few more in case guests come over or you have a day you just really couldn’t -didn’t want to – do the dishes). Get rid of lids that don’t have the bottom. Get rid of unused silverware. Get rid of extra pans. Get rid of cups you don’t really need. For example, I have three kids, so I probably don’t really need like 10 plastic kids’ cups.
#4. Clean the surfaces in your living room
Make the surface areas in your living room as clear as possible. This adds to the feeling of peace and comfort in your main living space.
#5. Assess your walls
Go through your home and see if there is anything that can be removed from your walls. Having too much wall decor can add to the feeling of busyness and chaos. However, having too little (or none) might make your home feel less warm and comforting. It’s based upon your taste and preferences, but having less decor is probably better. You might also be able to spice up your wall decor by doing things such as framing kids’ art work or having a designated area for menus, calendars, etc.
#6. Declutter your evening
I know this isn’t as clear as the other tasks have been, but this one can really help to create a more fulfilling life.
I don’t believe we are just meant to work, work, work. Yes, having a good work ethic is important, but having downtime can add to the quality of our lives by giving us more energy and more focus when we are taking part in our to-do list items.
To declutter your evening, decide on a time that you will be done doing chores or working on job-related tasks and commit to doing this daily. I would recommend doing this at least two hours (at a minimum) prior to going to bed (which means you should designate yourself a regular bedtime, as well).
#7. Organize your wardrobe
Go through every piece of clothing you have. Throw away any piece of clothing that is ripped, stained, doesn’t fit you, or that you haven’t worn in a long time. Only keep a few pieces of clothing that have genuine sentimental value.
Sort your clothes into the categories that work best for you. This might be work clothes (sorted into tops and bottoms) and other clothes (sorted, as well) or this might be tops (sorted into types of tops), bottoms (sorted into types of bottoms), undergarments, pajamas, etc.
#8. Clean the surfaces in your bedroom
Our bedrooms should be a relaxing place. Having unnecessary items on the surface areas in our bedrooms (such as the nightstand and your dresser) adds to the feeling of chaos and not being at ease with ourselves or our surroundings. You can keep a few things on the surface areas, but only if it will add to your sense of calm and well-being, such as a book (not ten books) or whatever other relaxing items you think might be relevant to your bedroom.
#9. Declutter your entry area
Whether you have an entry room, porch, doorway, or your front door leads right into your home, the view that is seen when you walk through the door can impact your sense of well-being. Try to only keep items in this space that are relevant to this area. If this area can be used for storage (only if there is room), that’s okay as long as it isn’t getting in the way and the storage is organized and closed away as much as possible (such as in a closet or storage container).
#10. Clean out your refrigerator
You might overlook how a messy or unclean fridge can impact your well-being (or maybe you do notice it), but this is a helpful organization task to complete. Look at every food item. See if it is something that should be kept or thrown out. Sort the food/items you are keeping. Sanitize and clean out the refrigerator, as well.
#11. Clean off your desk (if you have one, or wherever you typically do your paperwork.)
Having a clean and nicely organized work space can certainly add to your wellness. Whether you work from home and have a desk for that purpose or you have a computer desk or maybe you use your table or a side table for paperwork, paying bills, etc., having this area neat and tidy can certainly be helpful.
#12. Create clean floors
Having no extra, unnecessary items on the floors of your home can help your home feel more relaxing and organized. Walk through your home and pick up everything on the floor that is not absolutely necessary to have there. Be sure to look closely, as we can overlook things that have been sitting there for awhile since we have probably grown used to looking past them. Put them away in an appropriate location or throw them away (if they are no longer needed).
After you have completed these tasks thoroughly, they shouldn’t be as challenging to complete in the future, especially if you establish habits for maintaining these areas in your home. However, things happen and we can’t (or at least I can’t) keep up with every area in my home all the time, so I recommend revisiting these 12 organization tasks regularly.
Make a schedule to stick to completing at least one task a week or whatever schedule works for you and is reasonable to your household needs.
I hope these 12 home organization tasks help you feel more relaxed and more at peace with your life and within yourself. These 12 tasks are certainly going to take some effort to complete but I believe the results are well worth it.
You can’t experience anything different if you don’t do anything different.
I will be launching an email course: Ultimate Parenting Success: Raising Toddlers in the near future. If you are interested in registering to be notified of when the course is available and also if you would like access to a FREE Expert Tip Sheet for solving 7 Common Parenting Concerns with Toddlers, go to www.parentingtoddlers.org or CLICK HERE.
image credit: Elenathewise via Fotalia