I’m not a very organized person. I’m forgetful, easily sidetracked, and usually tired from juggling everything all the time. Because of this, I tend to misplace things or lose track of how off-track my house has gotten. I guess the good thing is that I know this. I’ve acknowledged my downfalls, and I’ve actively searched for ways to help me better organize my home in an attempt to keep up with things.
I’ve roped my kids in on this too since they’re the ones who make the most amount of mess. Through my searching, I’ve come up with ways to make being clutter-free part of our everyday routine. This way I don’t have to actively work on it. If everything has an easily accessible place for it, it will make keeping it organized even easier.
I’m starting in the living room since it’s the most used room in our house. I’ll be moving to other rooms over the next few weeks, so I’ve decided to turn this little adventure into a series of posts. Hopefully, by the time I’ve finished, my home will be a well-oiled machine and cleanup will be a breeze.
For organizing my living room, I decided to break it down by space in an effort to make the most of what I had. Here are 10 ideas to effectively organize your family to help you keep your home running smoothly, even when you’re not. I’ve found several items that I’m considering, and I’ve compiled a source list at the bottom of the post for your convenience.
Stop The Clutter Before It Starts
If your kids are anything like mine, the moment they walk through the door backpacks get strewn, shoes are tossed, and jackets are taken off and dropped on the closest surface they can find. If you’re tired of repeatedly telling them to pick up their things, try creating a place that is just as convenient for them as the rest of the room.
Adding hooks for jackets and backpacks and a small shelf for shoes just inside the door works wonders. Another necessity for the main entrance is an information station. This will help you keep mail and other papers as well as your keys in a convenient place. An entry shelf with hooks, a lateral file cabinet, or even several small baskets placed nearby works wonders.
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Make Room for Trash
Allowing a wastebasket into your family area doesn’t have to be an eyesore. You can choose to hide it in a discreet section of your room or purchase one that blends in with the décor. Or, if your design calls for it, you can buy one that adds to the décor.
With the huge amount of electronics in the average family room, organizing all the cords is important for creating an aesthetic living space. You can use simple zip ties, cable ties, or a cable sleeve to collect all of your cords.
Make Use of Your Coffee Table
As one of the larger, centrally-located pieces of furniture in the room, the coffee table is usually one of the most cluttered surfaces in a family room. Creating a home for this clutter before it can form will save you hassle in the long run. Add a tray on top for the items that belong on the table.
Place some storage cubes, rolling baskets, or baskets under the coffee table to make use of that otherwise unused space. Add magazines or even small toys to these storage boxes to keep it off the table top.
Take Advantage of the Space Behind the Couch
Just like under the coffee table, there is often unused space behind the couch. This space is great for storing throw pillows, blankets, candles, or anything that gets used regularly. You can store these items in a trunk, small cabinet, or low bookcase. Two narrow shelves placed facing out would add an easily accessible space for storage as well as an extra surface behind the couch for displaying décor.
Use Your Vertical Space For Photos and Collectibles
If you have a bunch of small pictures, put them in a photo collage or digital photo frame. Shadow boxes and floating shelves are great ways to display your collectibles without adding more surface space for the kids to add clutter.
Create a Play Area
It’s pointless to think that kids are going to keep all their toys in their rooms all the time. If you have younger children, the most popular place to spend their time is the living room. Having a space for their toys makes daily cleanup a breeze. When you’re ready to really clean the room, simply put away the toys that have collected since your last cleaning.
Having a chest or cabinet is an excellent way to hide any toys or crafts that usually stay in the room to keep things organized. At the end of the day, throw the toys in the chest and close the lid. Tada. Your room is yours once more.
Limit Your Movies and Books
Having a TV readily available is a must-have when it comes to kids, but with so many streaming options a lot of the DVDs that were once necessary are practically obsolete. Going through your videos and storing those that get watched the least will help make dusting much easier, as well as freeing up space.
Books are other items that can make dusting difficult, so limiting them is just as important. Once you’ve freed up some space by decreasing your volume of volumes (see what I did there), you can try grouping your books, interspersing them with other collectibles for a more streamlined look. A couple of L-shaped brackets screwed into the wall make a perfect nest for several books if you’d prefer to get them vertical. The result is what looks like floating shelves.
Organize Any Houseplants
Houseplants are great for making the environment inside your home healthy and welcoming. But if you’re short on space or if your succulent collection is getting a bit overwhelming, organize your houseplants with a plant stand placed somewhere out of the way, or you can hang planters to keep them out of the hands of your kiddies.
Alternate Portions of Your Collections
Almost everyone likes to collect something, but there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. If you have a lot of collectibles that you don’t want to get rid of, one option would be to alternate which items you put on display. The rest of the collectibles can be safely stored in tubs and put away in a hall closet or another easily accessible area of your home. Then when you are ready for a change, you have your own personal store of decorations waiting for you.
I have been actively working to implement these ten actions in my own family room, as well as searching for ways to organize the rest of my home. I have found that having a designated, easy to access space for everything helps me keep up with things and makes a quick cleanup much more possible.
Wall Shelf and Mail Holder with 3 Hooks (pictured)
Trash Bucket (pictured)
Wood TV Stand/Storage Console (pictured)
Zinus Modern Rectangle Coffee Table (pictured)
Cherry Sofa Table (pictured)
LED Photo Clip String Lights (pictured)
Soft White Toy Box (pictured)
16 Cube Bookcase (pictured)
Rustproof Planter Shelf (pictured)
Set of 3 Floating U Shelves (pictured)
I hope this helps you get organized and save time.