According to a study conducted by The Mental Health Foundation, over half (54%) of the UK adult population felt anxious or worried in the last two weeks of December because of the pandemic.
Dealing with the ongoing uncertainty is having a huge strain on our mental health, and leading many to reach for unhelpful coping mechanisms like excessive drinking and unhealthy eating.
There are resources available for anyone who is struggling. One page which may be particularly helpful is this one on the Scope website. You can also find a lot of useful articles and resources on the Mind website. The most important thing to remember is that you are not alone and you can reach out when you need help.
Could cleaning be a better coping mechanism?
Organising my space and time has given me a much needed distraction and allowed me to feel calmer. The joys of minimalism and living clutter free (as much as is realistic in the modern world!) have been explored and praised by many. Renowned tidying expert Marie Kondo believes that maintaining an organised home can be life changing. I know I always feel more relaxed and at peace when I’m not surrounded by mess.
So how can you achieve an organised home, and maintain it, easily?
I’ve listed a few simple organisation tips below to help you experience the joys of a cleaner space.
Dedicate 10 minutes a day to cleaning. Set a timer on your phone, get some tunes on and go! You’d be surprised at what you can achieve in such a short amount of time. Whether it’s vacuuming your living room, finally putting that pile of washing away or tackling the washing up, your space will feel much more peaceful. Doing this everyday ensures that you won’t have to dedicate a huge chunk of your time at the weekend when you’d much rather be relaxing.
Have a weekly cleaning list. OK, I admit I’m a list-a-holic! But I’m sure you agree, there’s something so satisfying about being able to check an item off once you’ve completed it. Create a list of weekly tidying and cleaning chores that you can go back to everyday when you start your 10 minutes. This will help you keep track of what’s been done and means you don’t have to think about it. Just check the list and get started on the next item.
Buy (or create) cleaning products that smell nice. Bear with me here! If you’re lacking motivation to start and the idea of living in a mess free space isn’t enough to get you off the sofa, you need something stronger… something scented. I personally love the wild rhubarb scented floor cleaner by Method. All Method products are vegan and cruelty free, and the smell permeates the whole flat after I’ve used it. Zoflora is also a great, multipurpose disinfectant that comes in a range of scents. One of my favourites is summer breeze, perfect for using in the warmer months. There’s nothing better than a tidy, clean home which also smells delicious.
Organise your fridge. Not only is this one aesthetically pleasing, it also helps you keep track of what you have in stock and prevents food waste. I have found the best way to do this is with clear, plastic trays which you can pick up almost anywhere. I picked up this one from B&M for £1.99, but Matalan and of course Amazon have some great options. Once you have an organised space for each type of food, it’s much easier to maintain a tidy fridge. And it makes putting away the weekly shop that much easier!
Use a weekly planner. I don’t know about you, but I’m a visual person. Having my week mapped out and colour coded helps me to keep on top of daily tasks. I dedicate most of my planner to work tasks, but also include dinner ideas and exercise goals. The planner I use is this one from Etsy. It’s beautiful and the perfect size to keep at hand on my work desk.
Let me know how you get on if you give these tips a try! I’m always on the lookout for new systems and would love to hear about any organisation and cleaning hacks that you already have.