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Combat Clutter With Maintenance

There’s a certain feeling you get when you’ve completely exhausted yourself cleaning, organizing, and getting your house just how you want it. I’m not talking about fatigue, thirst, or any kind of physical ache or pain. It’s the inner feeling of satisfaction when you look back on your work and are pleased with the result. It feels good, right? Sadly, you know what comes next. Dishes and laundry pile up, school projects land on the kitchen table, and new purchases wait for a space to be designated for them. But…your work does not have to be in vain. Maintenance is the key.

Impending Disarray

Motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar, said, “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” The same principle applies to organizing. I would wager to say that no house remains picture perfect for an extended period unless the owners are out of town! Disarray will come.

So, if you’ve spent a long day sorting, editing and organizing, but don’t want to lose that clutter-free feeling, you’ll need a maintenance system to keep it in check.

"The secret of landscapes isn't creation... it's maintenance." - Michael Dolan, Actor, Director and Educator

Create a Setpoint to Get Back To

The reality is, the spaces we use in our daily lives will sometimes be organized, and at other times…not quite so much. Your home and workspace are there to serve you, and as such, things get out of place when we use them. There may be low-key activities like making dinner or doing the laundry, or more chaos-creating activities like party or holiday prep. You will make a mess, and that’s okay. As long as you have a setpoint to go back to, everything can quickly return to a state of “like it never happened.”

Let me share with you an example of the temporary clutter that can magically disappear when everything has a home. Below are some photos of my kitchen countertop after a fun day of Easter activities. If I did not regularly maintain my countertops by clearing them off and putting things where they belong, I would quickly have a nonfunctional kitchen!

Perfection Is Not the Goal

I think many of us put too much pressure on ourselves to have a picture-perfect home. There’s something inviting about a home that looks lived-in. Of course, “lived-in” does not mean leaving mounds of clutter and chaos for the sake of coziness. It means that it’s normal to have things out of place that are currently in use. That’s what they are there for, right? Again, they just have to go back to their “home” when you are finished with them, and all will be well.

You Don’t Have to Do It Yourself

Organizing is only half the battle. That’s why our team also works with clients on the maintenance side of organizing projects. We’ve got plenty of tips we can provide, or we can come out on a regular schedule to renew order. So, if the idea of revisiting that once-organized closet makes you slink back under the covers, know that you don't have to do it yourself. A touch-up or a refresh every couple of months is typically all it takes to keep your home well-organized.

What Does Professional Organizing Maintenance Look Like?

When our team comes in to do what we call a Refresh, we use your established organizational system as a guide to resetting your space. It’s not like recreating the wheel. It’s more like tightening the spokes. Here are some examples of what we can do during a Refresh:

  • Pantry, Kitchen Counters and Dining Table – We check the pantry for expired items, spills, backstock items to refill, and items that are out of place. We also clear the kitchen counter and dining table of all out-of-place items and return them to their proper homes.

  • Any Entryway “Hotspots” - Mud rooms, entryways, coat closets and interior garage entrances are notorious for pileups. We sort trash, mail, packages, schoolwork, seasonal clothes, keys, cords and misplaced items to reset the space. You'll enter your home to find calm and order instead of chaos.

  • Play Areas - Kids' play areas can get out of hand quickly. Maintenance is very important in this area because a chaotic play space for a kid is just like a chaotic workspace for an adult. They can't focus, and they can't play. We put items back into their storage systems, check for broken items, remove any messes (crafting debris, food, etc.), and create a space ready for the child to do the work of playing and learning.

  • Closets - We remove dry cleaning bags, take out empty hangers, match shoes, sort clothing by type, put all dirty clothes in the receptacle, and put all clean clothes in their proper place.

Creating a positive mental space for clients by maintaining the physical space they live in is what motivates us on every single project. If you feel calmer, more focused and at peace when your home is in order, let us help you keep it that way. Schedule a Consultation so we can discuss your maintenance needs!

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