Millions of us worldwide have been confined to our homes as a means of slowing the spread of disease. While it isn’t the way most of us imagined spending the past several weeks, it doesn’t have to be a total waste of time either. By doing your part staying home, you might have a slightly claustrophobic feeling because of all the items you’ve accumulated over the years and are now surrounded by day in and day out. Now is the perfect time to tackle some projects around the house. But where can you start? To help clear the clutter and get things in order, I’ve compiled a list of things you can do to get started in organizing your home and keep it that way long after everything resolves.
Declutter Your Beauty & Personal Care Products
Having a new skincare routine not only takes time, but it can also take plenty of trial and error to find what works best for your skin and makes you feel your best. In fact, many of us have spent this extra time at home prioritizing our self-care by revisiting a more detailed skincare routine and perhaps have taken advantage of some sales on products. We all know that this can contribute to an accumulation of products old and new, with some that may not have been touched in months. Some may even be expired! (Covers head and face in shame)
Collect all of the tubes and bottles from your bedroom and bathroom, and group like items together. From there, decide if you can toss or donate it. From the categories you’ve just made, decide whether or not these items can fit back neatly into the place where they came from. Do you need any trays or containers to help corral these items in place and make it easier for you to grab and actually use? Measure your storage spaces and shop online for containers to assist in keeping things organized.
Clean Out Your Fridge / Cupboards / Pantry
Many of us have surely had our cooking abilities tested over the past several weeks especially with the restrictions on sitting in restaurants. And yes, while food delivery is an option, it can be very costly once the delivery and service fees are added on. You may find yourself spending more time in the kitchen needing to cook for yourself or your family, or perhaps testing out new recipes that you’ve been dying to try, but previously couldn’t because of limited time. Keeping things neat and tidy in your kitchen can help eliminate the anxiety you feel trying to get kitchen tasks done. I suggest using clear glass or plastic containers to help you get organized. It helps to keep things compartmentalized while allowing you to actually see what you have. Going through your fridge at least once a week to throw out any old or expired items is a must too. This can help eliminate refrigerator odors that come about after realizing you kept an item too long. I suggest also doing this right before trash collection day. That way, odors of discarded items don’t linger around the house.
Check Your Smoke & Fire Alarm Systems
Typically, the recommendation is to check your smoke and fire alarm systems at least twice a year or every 6 months. It is suggested to use daylight savings time as a reminder. Now, I know many of us, myself included, don’t always pay attention to our smoke alarms until we hear the incessant, high-pitched beep that reminds us to replace a dying battery. Some of you out there might even be reading from areas where the time doesn’t need to be adjusted for daylight savings time. So, if you’re reading this post, now is the time to go through your home to ensure that your smoke alarms (and carbon monoxide detectors) are working properly. You should also check your alarm system. If you didn’t install your own, call the company that installed the system to make sure that everything is functioning well from their headquarters or remote monitoring site. And if you’re a rookie in the kitchen, you want to be 1000% sure that your smoke alarms are in working condition before you ignite that stove (wink & smile)!
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Now… speaking of sleep…
Reorganize, Rearrange, and Make Your Bedroom a Place of Tranquility
One of the things many of us complain about is not getting enough sleep. Some of you may have been lucky enough, during this time, to catch up on lots of it. If you’re one of the folks lacking in the sleep department, think about what it is that is interrupting your ability to rest and sleep well. Is it the way your furniture is arranged in your room? Perhaps a quick move and swap of furniture position would alleviate that (think feng shui). Moving your bed out of the way of direct sunlight might assist with you getting a few extra winks in at sunrise. If you can’t move the bed, try investing in black-out or dark curtains to keep the morning light out. Do you rely on watching television to fall asleep only to wake up in the middle of the night and find the TV watching you? Waking up to turn off the TV can be a major sleep interrupter. Also, the blue light that emanates from the screen also affects your eyes. Try to find other methods of falling asleep without a screen like reading a book, listening to a guided meditation, or pre-recorded nature sounds. If you absolutely cannot escape using the television, set a sleep timer so that it turns off automatically. You can even paint your room walls with a calming color to help foster feelings of rest and relaxation as soon as you enter.
What are some other tasks you can take on to get your home in order during this time? Are there any big or small projects you can begin working on that weren’t mentioned above? Incorporate your family members to help and give their input as well. You can even delegate one area per family member or roommate so that you don’t get too overwhelmed. Whatever it is, do it with pride and know that we are all in this together.