Do you feel like you have limited space in your home? Are you struggling with storage? I have heard from countless in-home clients that they were concerned that they didn’t have enough space in their homes to be organized. And I always told them that wasn’t the case. No matter the size of your home, you can easily get organized. But sometimes you have to do some things to help reduce clutter to give you more space. It does take planning to create space design to maximize organization in your home. You have to be really thoughtful about what you bring into your home, how you store things, and creating habits to keep things tidy. The habits are probably the most important because when you have a small space, you need to keep up with whatever organizational system you put into place.
Small spaces take some thinking when it comes to organizing but that doesn’t mean they don’t offer you lots of organization. You just have to plan the space for your stuff. What I mean by that is you cannot expect to just throw things in cabinets like you would if you “had more space”. You do need to create order within your home in order to optimize every area of your home.
To optimize every area, I recommend you keep things you use daily at arms reach. Other things that you may use seasonally or occasionally should go in taller cabinets or storage spaces. Then create a system for swapping out seasonal things. One example of this is baking items you may only use during the holiday season and grilling items. Those types of things can easily be swapped out in the kitchen for the appropriate season, giving you more space in your kitchen year round.
Organizing habits are the things you do to create organizing systems, which is basically how you maintain order. But you do it on a daily or weekly basis so it becomes a habit. You want to continue to do things so that they become natural to you. You don’t want to think about doing them. They are just a habit.
You are already doing organizing habits now. You take out the trash, run the dishwasher, put away clothes, sort through your papers. But when you live in a small space or feel that your home is too small for you stuff, you need to take a look at what you have in your home first.
Do You Need Everything?
You have to start by getting really honest with yourself. Do you need to keep everything that you have right this second. When you start with this question, you will be able to truly determine if you are just holding onto things because you feel like it or if you are holding onto things you actually use.
Back when I lived in a studio apartment, I wanted to keep all the things in case “one day” I would need them. But holding onto things that didn’t fit in my space, just because, wasn’t helping me now. So I sold or removed things that I wasn’t using. Once those items were removed, I realized I had a lot more space than I thought. It was all the things I wanted to hold onto for “one day”.
Since we moved into a house from an apartment, I haven’t missed a single thing that I was holding onto in my studio apartment for “one day”. Because my style and needs have changed. I have a large oven so I didn’t need the gadgets that I had because I had a tiny oven.
Another way to look at your space design of your home can be to do a downsize. What this means is that you treat your decluttering session like a downsize. So you only keep things you use right now. Everything else is sold or donated.
A great resource on this is a book called Gentle Art of Swedish Death Decluttering. The book walks you through how to do a declutter once you hit midlife. It isn’t as morbid as it sounds. It just puts a new perspective on decluttering over your lifetime. So if you are struggling, I highly suggest reading it because it really sheds light on what you want to leave behind for your family and why decluttering now will help that.
Use What You Have
When planning your space design to ensure organization, make sure you use every piece of space you have. When I lived in my studio apartment, I had a cabinet at the very top of my closet that reached the ceiling. It was so hard to get to but had great storage. So I used that for off season clothing and back stock items that I bought. I only put things in there that I used or needed at certain times of the year, so it wasn’t a pain to get to when I needed something. But it would be a chore if I had to do that daily.
So think about every piece of space you have in your home. Make sure you are maximizing everything you can when it comes to space design and organization. That cabinet above your fridge. Can you use that for something like storing off season items? What about that top shelf in your linen closet. Can that be used for over stock items that you only need to replenish once a month? What about the space under the bed? Can you use that for your off season bedding? Shoes?
Get creative with how you use the space. This may be when you use bins to make sure things don’t get lost in the back of the cabinet. Maybe you use space saver bags to keep everything small. There are a lot of products that can help with small spaces.
My Favorite Items To Help With Space Design
Now start with looking at your stuff and deciding if it really needs to stay in your home. Once you remove unused things, I promise you will start to see more space in your home. Use the space you have. Treat the declutter as a downsize. And if all else fails, hire a professional to help you. It will be money well spent!