We’ve all heard it said that a tidy house can help to achieve a more ’tidy’ mind. It’s a sentiment I’m ready to embrace. I’m a woman on a mission. It’s time for a more organised home!
Life is busy. Our brains are constantly in over-drive; suffering from too much stimulus and too little down-time. So I like to think that less chaos and clutter around the house is one change I can make to feel more calm and in control. Marie Kondo, author of the bestselling Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, certainly sells the dream of how an organised home can bring you greater joy, happiness and opportunities.
And even if my life isn’t totally transformed as Kondo suggests, I know there are still many benefits to be had from a bit of a house shake-up. I‘m hopeful that a more organised house will help balance the mental overload that sometimes happens in my head. I’ll spend less time looking for things, moving stuff out the way, tripping over toys, or cursing the world every time I have to find something I’ve put away in that elusive ‘safe place’. I’ll be able to spend more quality time with the family rather than sorting. My evenings and weekends can be spent doing things I enjoy rather than trying to curtail the clutter.
We’re not hoarders…
We don’t buy a lot of things and we’re actually pretty minimalist when it comes to personal touches around the home. But we do have too much ‘stuff’. Clothes that haven’t been worn for years; boxes of paperwork; bags of who-knows-what stuffed under beds. Worktops and shelves are over-filled; the hallway has too many coats and shoes. Yes, a house is for living in so you can’t completely strip it bare but there’s definitely things hanging around which aren’t needed and don’t bring me a warm, joyful, happy feeling (‘joy’ being the litmus test for Kondo of whether belongings stay or go).
And the effect of too much stuff – my house isn’t the relaxing place to retreat that I want it to be. Instead when I walk into a room I get p*ssed off with the clutter. I feel a knot of tension in my chest about all the jobs that need to be done around the house. So enough is enough. It’s time to get this house organised.
Some people find it easy.
I’ve got all the ‘organise your home’ type books. I have the best intentions. I want to get my folding technique perfected (click here to see how Marie Kondo recommends you fold clothes to make best use of your drawer space). I really want to be that person who is always on top of the housework; keeping the chaos at bay; with systems and places for everything.
The issues I have are (one) I’m not a naturally tidy person – don’t worry, I’m not living in squalor, but at home I’m more of a chaotic than organised disposition. (Two) when you’ve got a baby and a whirlwind of a toddler who can destroy an entire house in 10minutes, it’s hard to keep the place looking like a show home. And (three) despite all my enthusiasm for the job in hand, life gets in the way, it throws you another curveball and momentum slows.
And that’s why sometimes you just have to call in the experts. Which is exactly what I did
I called in the help of Tracy Ross from Blissfully Organised.
After a successful marketing career, Tracy turned her organised mind to setting up her own company, Blissfully Organised, and she’s spent the last 7 years helping people to declutter and create more order in their home lives.
Tracy can help you organise anything from your wardrobe to your paperwork; your garage to your entire home. She’ll visit you to do an audit of your house or you can book her for a 4-hour session. In most cases the audit is the best place to start and that’s the route I chose too.
I was a bit nervous of opening up my home (and my cupboards!) for scrutiny, but Tracy really put me at ease. Tracy’s approach is completely non-judgmental and I felt like she was giving me emotional as well as practical support. She offers total confidentiality (no need to worry about her arriving in a branded vehicle!) and she really made an effort to understand how our family live and my main reasons for wanting to get the house more organised. Once we’d spent some time getting to know each other we went on a tour of the house so Tracy could see how much stuff we have, how we use our storage space and the ways in which we currently organise (or don’t) the house.
After a couple of hours with me, Tracy prepares an audit of my home.
There’s no pressure from Tracy on the next steps. She goes away and emails you back the audit; in which she gives recommendations for each room, makes storage suggestions and prioritises actions from low to high. But it is then your choice how to move forward. You can either take her advice and crack on yourself. Or you can book Tracy to come back for a four-hour session where she’ll help you tackle one of your priority areas – and she also offers a tip or charity shop drop off service too so you don’t having that job hanging over you for weeks.
I definitely plan to have her back to organise our basement, aka the dumping ground of our house.
It is a luxury and some might scoff at paying someone to help you declutter (first-world problem or what) but if you think your life will be enhanced by a tidy house, tidy mind, then it’s worth the money. You could go it alone but someone like Tracy from Blissfully Organised will help you do it faster and more efficiently. Meaning you’ll have more free time to spend enjoying life and appreciating your organised home. You might also save or make some money along the way too (from not buying duplicates or replacements of misplaced items and from selling things you no longer want).
Blissfully Organised covers St Albans and the surrounding areas. Confidential Home Audits which include a review of your home and advice on changes that you can make, start at £110. Decluttering and organisation sessions start from £27.50 per hour (4 hours is the minimum time commitment for this). Visit the website for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don’t worry if you’re not local to Hertfordshire, Tracy will soon be sharing some of her home organisation tips as a guest blogger for Women Aloud.