Tag Archives: Tidy

Winter Survival Guide (24) ~ Getting Around to It.

We all have that something, don’t we? That something, or maybe even a bunch of things, that we keep meaning to get around to doing some day. Not necessarily great big things, but just those ‘niggly’ little things that maybe aren’t urgent but we know we need or want to do.

If you’re wondering what I mean, let me share with you some of my things that I’ve been meaning to ‘get around to’ for quite a while:

-Add addresses into my address book (an actual book, not an electronic version).

-Sort out my paper work.

-Tidy out my spare room, so that I can eventually turn this unintentional ‘storage room’ into a guest room.

-Reorganise my kitchen cupboard.

-Print out photos from the past couple of years to make an album.

– Meet up with a couple of friends to do creative things and play the violin together.

-Make an appointment with the doctor / dentist.

-Get new ceiling / spot lights and get them fitted as quite a few have stopped working.

Hopefully that gives you more of an idea of what the things you’ve been meaning to ‘get around to’ could be, or maybe you are well aware of them, but like me, you just never quite get around to them! 🙂 🙂

Maybe it’s not even something that takes too much effort, it could be that there’s  a particular novel that you’ve wanted to read, but you just haven’t ….yes you guessed it…..got around to it, yet.

Or maybe there’s a job needing done in your kitchen, not a big home-improvement project, but just something needing fixed. There could be a bit of your garden that you want to tidy before the weather gets too cold. Maybe you want to reorganise, or get organised with your household system (or create one if you aren’t quite at the point of having any workable systems yet). Maybe you’ve been meaning to call a friend to check in on them and see how they’re doing for a while, but the days just slip by. Or maybe there’s an email you wanted to write. Perhaps you want to create a scrapbook of memories from your family holiday, but instead of doing so, you let all the ‘bits and pieces’ you want to include in it remain scattered here and there around your house. Maybe you’ve been meaning to write out some recipes and update your recipe book if you’ve got one, or maybe you even want to try cooking or baking something new that you’ve been meaning to.

Whatever it is, sometimes we just need to remind ourselves of what we’ve been meaning to get around to, and a bit of a nudge into action. How easy would it be to spend one of these winter days or evenings just doing that simple thing that we’ve been meaning to do, or at least make a start on it?

For example, I could choose the photos I want to get printed and make a folder on my computer and then it will be easier when I do go to send off to get them printed.

Maybe I could spend some time one evening making a list or inventory of the specific lights in particular rooms that I need to get fixed so that I know how many I actually need.

I could write in one address at a time into my address book.

I could spend half an hour at the weekend tidying up my spare room, and at least I would have made a start.

Some of the ‘niggly’ wee jobs needing done can be done there and then. For things that might take longer, at least starting out, even if it’s just a small start will hopefully give us the opportunity to build momentum until we’ve accomplished that thing that we keep meaning to do.

So what is it that you’ve been meaning to get around to doing? And are you actually going to decide to get around to it in this season? 🙂

red screw driver on brown wooden surface
Photo by Steve Johnson on Pexels.com

 

 

 

 

Looking through the archives for some home and lifestyle inspiration.

It’s 11.10pm on Saturday evening, and this Saturday has definitely been a ‘reset’ type of day. By that I mean my flat / apartment was pretty messy after a busy week at work and also with a couple of evenings out meeting friends, which meant I just didn’t have what it took to keep on top of things at home. I miraculously (not being much of a morning person) awoke early and as it was a rare sunny morning, with a gentle light breeze and the streets almost empty of people, I went for a morning walk in the sunshine by the riverside before 8am. Usually  I would probably still be tucked up in bed on a Saturday morning, catching up on sleep, but it really was a lovely and quiet time of day to be outside, and a nice change. 

The rest of the day has involved intermittently cleaning and tidying as well as just doing some relaxing things at home. My kitchen and living room which are open plan were so messy, but are pretty cosy now apart from some papers and miscellaneous items needing sorted. So at least I can relax here. My bedroom, however, is in a very sorry, messy state, and it’s getting me down a bit. So is my spare room which needs a fresh decluttering and tidy up after last year’s big decluttering project. Not to mention my bathrooms needing a good, clean going over. My moods are affected by my surroundings, and I am aware of choosing not to get stressed or upset by mess, as I said in a previous post advising to ‘enjoy your mess, enjoy your tidy’, for in our mess we can see our abundance and so much to be thankful for. But still, I’m human, and living alone I have no one to clear up after me during a tiring or busy week, and I don’t have any special ‘Mary Poppins’ formula whereby things miraculously tidy themselves away with just a click of the fingers, and a ‘spoon full of sugar’.

Basically, I need some inspiration, and a fresh reminder that I have had things on track before, so I can do it again. And hopefully this will be a bit of an inspiration for you too, so I’m reposting a bedroom spring décor post I wrote last year. One last note for you and for me: don’t let any clutter around you clutter up your mind! Let’s have gratitude and a positive attitude in the mess as well as the tidy. xx

via Satisfying your changing colour cravings…without a single drop of paint!

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Sunday reset afternoons.

Do the thing that your ‘tomorrow self’ will thank you for doing today! 🙂

Sunday afternoons are a good chance to ‘reset’ and reorganise to be fresh and ready for the week ahead, especially if you’ve had a busy week, and weekend. It’s a nice time to chill out, tidy up, and try to get into a positive and productive frame of mind for the week ahead. Yet, it can be hard sometimes to feel motivated. I know the feeling, but I’m going to try to not put unnecessary pressure on myself so that even if things aren’t fresh and ready for Monday and a brand new week, they will be ‘fresher and more ready’. One thing I like to do if I have a lot of tidying or organising to do is to break things down into smaller more manageable tasks, or set a five minute timer so that I can do a bit of work, and then do something relaxing or creative that I enjoy, and then get back into another task. This is especially helpful on those ‘lazy days’ when you need a little bit more ‘oomph’ and motivation. I also like to think of how I’d ideally like things to be, in my home and living space, and work towards that and it’s nice to know there is a whole world of inspiration out there on YouTube and elsewhere on the internet to help get back on track and make our surroundings a little more beautiful and our life that bit more organised and productive. I’ll give it a go, and see how much I can get done this Sunday evening while still staying in a reasonably chilled out frame of mind, and feeling grateful for the blessings and with the intent of doing the best with what I’ve got. A little at a time, right? So what helps you stay motivated? Do you have a Sunday afternoon / evening ‘reset routine’? 

beige table lamp on table with chair in room
Photo by Chris Gonzalez on Pexels.com

Are you stressed out & drowning in clutter? Believe in yourself and make a change…

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As promised, dear friends, here are the first of a few ‘before & after’ pictures from my big 2018 declutter, reorganisation & spring clean! 

One of the main reasons I am posting this series, other than to help me keep track of my progress, is because I believe from experience that the way we live and use our space can have a huge impact upon our mental health, well being, stress levels and as a result, our quality of life. 

I also want to encourage you, if you are struggling, that I wasn’t born tidy or organised, and from the pictures above you can see that it has taken considerable effort to overcome the challenges of disorganisation, clutter (and depression!), and to create a much happier, peaceful and enjoyable environment for myself and hopefully others.  I also want to encourage you that if you want to make a change, but are currently feeling overwhelmed, not to worry, you’re not alone, and it can be done. 

I’m sure that even looking at the before and after pictures, let alone being in the space, evokes an emotional and psychological reaction in you…the first picture no doubt represents somewhere that you probably wouldn’t want to be, whereas the second, ‘after’ picture is quite peaceful, ordered, inviting and aesthetically pleasing. 

So where do you start? Let me suggest a few helpful hints and tips on your journey…(and for more, check out my previous blog posts in this home & lifestyle series that you can find from my main menu).

  • Know what you are dealing with, and break things down into smaller more manageable tasks. What I mean by this is that you will absolutely, definitely feel overwhelmed and daunted and perhaps even confused if you say to yourself, ‘I need to sort out / tidy / clean / declutter my house / flat’ etc if you don’t have any idea of how you are going to do this or where to start. Even if you feel like your entire living space is chaotic and that you can’t do it, believe me (and the pictures for proof!) that you can. Start with a pen and a notepad, and jot down the key areas or rooms of your home or flat. For me, this would be: the hallway, hall cupboard, my bedroom, small en suite bathroom, spare room (or dumping ground as it was for a long time), main bathroom, open plan living, kitchen, dining area. These can be broken down further, but that will be once you have focused your attention on a particular area. I find it helpful, even if I am doing different tasks simultaneously, to work as much as possible either by room by room and / or by theme.

 

  • Once you have chosen where to start, say for example, the bedroom, think about the  items you use there, what you need, and your daily routine. Then think about how you will create a place for each type of thing. For example, storage of clothes, toiletries, bed linen, etc. Name places, even in your mind, but writing it down initially helps, and be disciplined in how you think about storage.

 

  • Next, when faced with a mess like that above, you will need to lighten your load and begin to declutter, bin, recycle, give away and sort the items that you do have. I found it very helpful to keep myself from getting overwhelmed to set aside some time and to look upon this stage as a game or a puzzle to solve. For example, I would perhaps get a big bin bag and start by identifying and throwing away all of the things I could see that could go straight into the bin. I did the same with items to be recycled and sorted them into papers and plastics. I also went by item type, and created a single (yes, just one!) identifiable storage space in my home that I could either immediately start putting things away in or where I would be able to once I had done more work of creating that space. For example, an easy step was to begin to identify the many plastic bags, take them out of the room, fold them and put them in one single place that I could go to when I needed a plastic bag. I did the same with other bags, and types of items such as scarves, etc. With clothes, towels, etc, I got them all out of the way and put them to one side, after which I washed and dried them and sorted them: some would go to charity, some for storage for the appropriate season, and others would be the clothes that I need for current use.

 

  • Sometimes you will need to purchase additional items to help you  create a system. For example storage organisers, boxes, etc to create order. I have a small / medium sized wardrobe in my room with sliding doors. This can be tricky to make the most of the space available and I know that some people with these cupboards prefer to take off the sliding doors for easier access. I personally like the idea of being able to close the doors as who can guarantee that they’ll always keep their new system tidy?! I found that a lot of space was being wasted because there are no shelves or drawers inside, and any clothes that can’t go on the hangers tend to find themselves heaped in a pile at the bottom of the cupboard. So working from the inside out, I created additional storage space by buying this easy to assemble item as shown above and have organised my clothes and accessories so that the hanger space and the ‘free space’ is utilised. I have taken care to not pack the space full of stuff, which was made easier by getting rid of things when decluttering as well as creating storage space under the bed, by purchasing a very affordable ottoman to go at the end of the bed, and storage bags for underneath the bed, all with a specific purpose for particular types of items.

 

  • You will find that certain types of items just don’t belong in the room that they are in and that you will need to create an appropriate space for in the ‘correct’ room at a later date. You can begin by finding a temporary space to gather items of that type so that they don’t stay in the room that they’re not supposed to be in.

 

  • The whole process can be time consuming, depending on how deeply you are in your clutter, and can sometimes feel laborious, or overwhelming. However, you can do it! A wonderful place to start is with your imagination and inspiration. Daydream about your ideal room, and how you are going to make it that way. Having a strategy will enable you to accomplish so much more and much more quickly, as you work to a plan and don’t get caught up in the emotional baggage of how you got to this state in the first place. Perhaps you only need some ‘fine tuning’ in which case, as I develop my own, I will post guidance and tips on a daily / weekly / monthly / yearly ‘maintenance schedule’. Make sure that you don’t let yourself get overwhelmed. If you read over my previous posts you will find advice on the importance of having a space that you are happy to go to, even the tiniest ‘cosy corner’ so that you can take breaks, enjoy ‘now’ and allow yourself to rest and be refreshed.

It is a process, but if you turn your process into a puzzle to be solved rather than a chore to be endured, you might find that you enjoy it a whole lot more, and create the home of your dreams….right where you are!!! All the very best with your homemaking journey, friends. xx

 

Welcome to February’s Theme: ‘Home & Lifestyle’ :) ….From Clutter to Calm….Let’s Climb this Mountain Together!

Welcome back, friends. 

If you haven’t already read my earlier post on ‘January 2018 in Review’, you can find it here: https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/129815114/posts/2562 

So following on from that, welcome to February’s Home & Lifestyle Theme. 

I don’t know about you, but as much as I strive to keep things clean, tidy and under control in my home, things can sometimes get a bit out of hand, and that ‘temporary storing place’ becomes a semi-permanent dumping ground that establishes itself as the dreaded ‘junk room’! Seriously, how does that even happen? 😉 

I love beautiful aesthetics, I love colour, and things to be pretty and cosy. However, managing my first ever home of my own over the past five and a bit years has been a learning curve, for various reasons. If you are a regular reader, or if you have visited my blog previously, you may be aware that I have had some difficult years overcoming Post Traumatic Stress, Severe Clinical Depression and Generalised Anxiety Disorder…so at times it has been a massive accomplishment for me to manage to do even the simplest of things like washing a cup or feeding myself properly. Thankfully, by the Grace of my Loving God, I have persevered, sought professional medical help and treatment for the Post Traumatic Stress, etc, and been plodding on every day to improve the quality of my life from merely surviving to beginning to experience some stability and my own little pockets of happiness and self care. 

I don’t know where you are on your journey, your experience of life, or your current living situation. Perhaps you do not have a ‘permanent’ home, maybe you live within the confines of someone else’s space, possibly you even live in a mansion, a caravan or a ‘tiny house’ purposely built for a more minimalistic lifestyle. I’m not sure, but I certainly would be intrigued and interested to hear from you in the comments.

However, whatever our situations, we all have the common experience of having to manage and maintain our little patch on the earth. And this can be a struggle at times for those of us who are gradual learners in the fine art of organisation. And yet, I’m sure all of us, even those of you who claim to simply love your organised chaos and peculiar methods of madness in maintaining your systems that may be all but undecipherable to others 😉 …I’m sure we all find a greater calm emotionally and mentally when we are in a calming environment. Perhaps more so than we should do, for, as in another previous post, ‘Enjoy Your Mess, Enjoy Your Tidy’ it is important to seek to be calm whatever state or stage we are in, and to see things through realistic, yet positive filters. 

There is something about a place of order and peace where there is a place for everything and everything is in its proper place that allows our minds to contemplate and focus on the things we enjoy, be that listening to music, reading a book, spending time with friends or family and focusing on them rather than being distracted by the clutter of stuff we need to attend to, crafting or colouring or making models, writing your blog or reading someone else’s, or whatever that thing may be. 

And despite our best efforts to relax while we know that the dishes are piled up in the sink, or when there is clutter right beside us, it is a lot more challenging to quieten down that ‘little voice’ that nags us to sort things out – so that even in our ‘down time’ where we are supposed to be relaxing, our minds are still busy being affected to some extent by our cluttered or clutter free surroundings either boosting or diminishing our moods and the things we think about ourselves, whether rightly or wrongly. 

So knowing that we are really all in this together, with so much to learn from each other, and be encouraged in our shared learning and motivation, let’s embark upon this journey. I have already made a bit of a start, and will show you before and after pictures of the room that I worked on, but will also share with you the seemingly monumental challenge of tackling the ‘junk room’ that is still very much needing attended to.  I will talk you through the steps I took, and would love to hear your feedback and learn from some of you ‘pro organisers’ out there, for goodness knows, I need the encouragement to keep going with the task I have started!! 🙂 

So for the moment, here is a glimpse into what the next post may contain. Be calm, know that you are blessed, and all the best if you are embarking upon your own home and lifestyle projects too. xx

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Enjoy your mess…enjoy your tidy…

pexels-photo-302810.jpegImage from WordPress free photo library.

“Enjoy your mess, enjoy your tidy”, that’s a little childlike phrase I made up for myself to help me to keep perspective, keep calm and resist the temptation to be overwhelmed.

If you think about it, as perhaps silly and simplistic as it at first seems, it is quite a loaded little phrase. For I’m sure that I’m not alone in the temptation to feel overwhelmed when outer clutter begins to encroach upon my inner calm, that as it is, is quite a delicate thing to try to maintain.

In seeking to encourage myself, I also encourage you to put your housekeeping ‘to-do’ list down for a moment, regardless of what is going on around you. Have a cuppa, take a deep breath, and enjoy a moment of a recalibrated perspective.

Instead of feeling overwhelmed or annoyed at yourself for the mess you’ve managed so far not to properly attend to, “enjoy your mess”. Look around you at all of the stuff that you are privileged to have to mess up your home in the first place. Take a moment to be truly grateful that you have a home to get messy, when so many people go without. Be thankful that you have more than enough, and perhaps more than you need, and instead of feeling guilty about this, and planning how to give more to other people, first just STOP. Be. Enjoy the mess.

And enjoy the process of tidying. Of being able to move and have the ability to do things, be grateful if you have been so blessed that you have limbs and movement, and perhaps even freedom from pain. And if you do not enjoy these things, consider what you *are* able to do, and enjoy and be thankful for those things.

Slow down, take your time, rushing through each task doesn’t necessarily make you more effective, but it probably does make you more overwhelmed.

And when you do reach that place of being able to ‘enjoy your tidy’….truly enjoy it. Even if you are on your own, or if you have kids rushing about, or if things seem to be descending into chaos again. Just take that moment. Enjoy. And keep this in mind as the days go on and the cycle repeats. And don’t forget to take care of yourself as you take care of your home and those you love.