While I strive for new ideas to manage with small space living, there are many days where you don’t have the energy to re-organize. It can be fair to say that many of the images on this blog and in my latest book took a reasonable amount of time to stage before taking photos. There are days where I put off de-cluttering tasks and where I might even question the importance of it at times. But without structure when decluttering, small space living can easily leave you unsettled and start to impact mental health in more ways realized. Thankfully, I have been able to create systems that are manageable and take minimal time. Here are some of them:
- Turning on the string lighting the moment I arrive home after dark – it creates instant warmth and reminds me that I’m home. I try to only use the wall light for a minute or two when hanging a jacket up and placing away a bag. For the string lighting, I have a simple plug on the faux fireplace by the doorway.
- All corner lights on after dark – there’s something about dark corners in a small living space that can make it feel unsettled. I would rather my corners be illuminated, have a dimly lit home and just lamps on for reading, than for a ceiling light to dominate the room lighting. To reduce the set-up time further, I am also working on programing a few wifi bulbs that can be turned on via my smartphone.
- Clearing the faux fireplace, doorway shelf and kitchen table of any clutter right away. It usually only takes a minute and will leave your home with a settled feel.
- A Junk box is the default for clutter – you will always have items where you’re unsure of where they can go. A junk box is handy for that quick putting away of things.
- Specific boxes for gloves, camera gear, laptop accessories and courier side-gig related items to reduce the junk box burden. The junk box can fill quick and my strategy was identify items that I use more than others and have designated spaces for them.
- Removing clutter underneath the daybed – it can be acceptable to have clutter underneath the daybed as it’s not in the way and is out of sight when sitting on it. However it is noticeable from other areas of the room.
- Aligning books and magazines. It’s the idea of clean lines and can make an even more noticeable difference to the eye than you think.
- Straightening of throw blankets and pillows on the daybed. Some like them scattered, however I find that with a canvas cot daybed, it looks a lot more together and proper when accessories are orderly.
- Re-aligning of living room chairs. It can be easy for them to get shifted when in a small living space, especially where cords are involved. However a simple adjustment can make the place look together again.
- Balance with folding clothings on open shelving in the closet. It can be easy for clothing to get disorganized and it takes a bit of time to have them all folded. On days where time is limited, a simple fix can be to just fold a few of the bigger items. But equally important, is being in the habit of folding clothing regularly to prevent a build up of unfolded clothing.
In summary, by developing simple habits on a daily basis and having an idea of the real time involved, you can achieve a liveable home on a daily basis.