If you couldn’t tell, Christmas is my absolute favourite time of year! There are so many reasons why, from the great music, to the food, friends & family, the decorations…pretty much everything! But with all the busy-ness, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with clutter, as normal household chores get left undone sometimes. Here are some ways to prevent that from happening, and to help everyone enjoy the holiday season as much as possible, without spending the entire time cleaning!
1. De-clutter as you go. When cleaning and tidying, make it a habit to get rid of things that are broken, or haven’t been used in a while. If you get rid of just a few things each time, you will find it easier to stay on top of it, rather than having to do a big de-cluttering day. Things like toys, books, and clothes are all things that tend to become clutter, and decluttering every day will make your life so much easier!
2. The one-touch rule. I have read about this a few times in the past few months, also called OHIO (Only Handle It ONCE!!) or Five Extra Steps. Such a simple strategy, but so effective! Instead of putting a book down on the counter, then putting it away later when you clean the counter, put it away right away – just one touch or five extra steps! When you only handle it once, you are cutting back on the extra step of putting it away later, and it only takes a few seconds more. This applies to so many things – it helps keep the kitchen clean while cooking, it helps keep your counters un-cluttered, and it helps you stay on top of your tasks. In addition, you should be able to find everything you need, because it was put away the first time! This is a great habit to teach the kids!
3. Involve everyone. Making sure the house is tidy and organized shouldn’t be left to you alone. Assign small daily tasks to each family member (ie. tidy shoes & boots, take out recycling/garbage etc) and things will get done quicker. Before having some screen time, make sure all beds are made and rooms are tidy. After supper, set a timer for 10 minutes, crank up the music, and work together cleaning something. You are not only lessening your workload, but you are also teaching your children valuable life skills!
4. Think before you buy. Whether it is decorations, gifts, wrapping paper, or even food, think twice before you buy it. Do you really need it? Do you have space for it? Is there something you could use from home instead, that you already have? Could you make something instead? Not only will this cut down on clutter, but it is great for your budget and the environment.
The more you simplify your household, the less chaotic your life will feel. Take time to enjoy the season, and remember what is really important to you and your family!