The following post is taken from my book, Start With Your Sock Drawer: The Simple Guide to Living a Less Cluttered Life. You can buy a copy for yourself at Amazon.
Taking Control in the Kitchen
Mornings in my kitchen were where the stress started. The rushing around, making lunches, trying to gulp down a cup of tea . . . all such simple tasks until children are involved! My cupboards were jammed and surfaces stuffed, there wasn’t really any logic to anything.
Becca, working mum of four lovely children.
So many of us, like Becca, begin the day on a bad note and – as we know – a stressful start often sets the tone for the whole day. Clutter breeds clutter and having a disorganised kitchen makes it hard for us to lay our hands on everyday items, which only adds to the pressure when we are already pushed for time. How many of us leave for work having hurriedly closed the front door on a scene more akin to feeding time at the zoo than a family breakfast? The image of the chaos that we have left behind stays with us and this is the scene we will return to at the end of the day. The day has barely begun and we are already feeling overwhelmed.
Every house is different but the kitchen is usually the hub of the home – meals are prepared (and often eaten) here, food and drink (and secret snacks!) are stored here, homework is completed, endless cups of tea are consumed and families and friends gather. This is the room with the most traffic and such heavy duty usage requires a practical, methodical approach to layout and storage. My clients are always surprised at how small tweaks and changes can have such a big impact on how their kitchen functions for them. As with my approach to all rooms and spaces, de-cluttering and organising your kitchen needs to be broken down into manageable tasks that can be done when you have 20–30 minutes to spare.
If you were to try and tackle the room as a whole, the kitchen would be out of action for a whole day – possibly a lot longer. Attempting to re-organise such a busy space all at once also means you run the risk of either running out of steam or having to stop mid-way through if you are interrupted. A client with small children said she’d tried to de-clutter her kitchen three times before giving up, as on each occasion she had to stop half way through due to the demands on her time.
Don’t bite off more than you can chew. It is important that you can start a task and successfully complete it. You do not need to write-off whole or even half days to get the job done. Who has that kind of time free anyway?
Change doesn’t have to happen overnight; small steps make a difference and quickly produce results. After all, how long have you put this off for already?