#1WeekWithout – mess (how to keep your house tidy)

I’m not naturally tidy, and I envy people who are: they must have some sort of super power. I mean, how is it possible for anyone to have that much discipline to not make a mess? This week I found out!

Get tidy

The first thing to do on #1WeekWithout mess was to tidy up the mess. And not my usual tidy of just moving things out of the way – a proper, full on, clean. I even threw out receipts from 3 years ago! My tip for getting tidy in the first place is to break it down and write a plan. ‘Tidy the house’ is a mammoth task, but ‘Sort out the paperwork’ and ‘Clean the windows’ is so much more achievable. Write down every little thing and take pleasure in ticking each one off.

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Stay tidy

The next thing is to stay tidy. And this is the important point, because once you slip and a little bit of mess appears it attracts more mess like a magnet. Don’t let that happen! The main thing is to try to do things as you go. When you open a letter, don’t put it on the side ready to file away later, put it where it belongs (so get storage sorted so that everything does actually have a place and you know exactly where to go to find it). Think of all the extra exercise you’ll get walking up and down stairs too! And keeping tidy takes so much less time than tidying up. I find it helpful to imagine I was going to have a visitor that day and had to stay tidy each day at a time.

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Don’t hoard

How much clutter have you got because you thought you might need that magazine article one day (so kept the whole magazine and now you can’t remember why anyway), or packaging that might some day come in handy. Be selective in what gets to stay in your life – you’re only going to have to sort it out at some point in the future and probably chuck it away then, so save yourself the hassle.

Enjoy the freedom

In my previous messy state, I always knew that there was tidying to do, and I always put it off. But when it’s tidy I found myself at a loss of what to do – there wasn’t all that rubbish hanging over me. I could get on with other things. It was like I had found a new sense of freedom! They do say “a tidy house, a tidy mind”. I think they’re right.

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