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Organizing

Doing These 2 Things First Can Make Reorganizing Your Home Easier, Says Expert

Professional organizer Mica Santayana-Canto shares her tips.

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Photography: Timothy Buck | Unsplash

For those who have the priviledge of staying in during the COVID-19 pandemic, home improvements have been a positive distraction. It's been scientifically proven that cleaning and organizing your home has health benefits: research has shown that people with cleaner houses are often healthier than those who don't. This also plays a huge part in your mental health: as a Psychology Today feature notes, "Women who described their living spaces as 'cluttered' or full of 'unfinished projects' were more likely to be depressed and fatigued than women who described their homes as 'restful' and 'restorative.' The researchers also found that women with cluttered homes expressed higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol."

In a Real Living PH Facebook Live Stream, professional organizer Mica Santayana-Canto of Tidily Ever After shares tips on how to handle home re-organzing without getting two overwhelmed. 

"I think the most important part now, especially during the lockdown… it’s really trying to understand how the space can work for you," she says. "So if your focus is, let’s say, working from home and being most productive, you might want to start out with a space that can double as your work area. It’s really about what’s most important to you now. And I find that when you’re motivated, and you really have that thought process, it makes starting the project much easier."

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She also explained that if reorganizing will also cause you to declutter, you can try the KonMari approach. "It basically is a system that you tidy up according to certain categories. Though I’ve done this before when it first came out—like nine years ago—and it’s great to jumpstart this whole tidying up and organized living."

She notes, however, that KonMari may still be a bit overwhelming, so starting per room can be a bit more manageable. "What I like to do is I try to think about how I want the room to serve me. So if it’s your living room, do you want it to encourage conversation. Do you want to have activities there with your kids? If it’s your bedroom, it’s supposed to be your sanctuary, it’s where you retreat at the end of the day. These are all your guidelines as what you should keep inside the room."

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Aside from setting intentions for each room, it's also important to plan it by creating zones. "It’s really great to assign zones. When I talk about assigning zones, you can do it within the space that you’re intending to declutter, and within your house as well. Like for me, I have to kids: all the toys are zoned in one area, and all my books are zoned in one area. It’s not like scattered around the house—I don’t have a library here, or a book collection over there.

"You’re basically trying to instill this kind of mapping with the rest of the family also, so they know that 'Oh, when I want to play, this is where I go. If I want to do some activities with the family, this is where I go.'

"This has really worked well, especially now during the quarantine. My husband and I [have been] trying to work from home, we’re trying to manage the kids, and it’s really about setting zones per area."

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Check out the full stream below:

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