There's no doubt that most of us live busy, stressful, demanding lives. The multiple deadlines, tasks, and expectations we all juggle can make everyday life seem rather chaotic.
That's why our homes should be the opposite of chaos. They should be havens of peace and tranquillity—places we can truly leave the stress behind and live simply. We all have different interior design styles, but we could all do with less clutter in our lives.
Here is my seven-step guide for achieving a minimalist, calming home really, really quickly:
1. Get critical with your furniture.
Oftentimes, what looks small in a showroom can be overbearing in your home and quickly create a busy, frantic feeling. Go through each room and decide which furniture actually serves a purpose versus just takes up space. For example, if you have a few chairs in your living room but only regularly use two, consider donating or storing the others.
2. Clear off your countertops.
Nothing makes a house feel more cluttered than a countertop covered in junk. Set aside a designated out-of-sight dump zone where you can put keys, change, and other loose items that normally end up littered around. The ideal vessel for this is a storage container (or two!) hidden away inside a cupboard.
3. Reassess your cooking utensils.
Most of us are guilty of having a drawer or container that's filled to the brim with cooking utensils—many of which we never actually use. To avoid the unnecessary clutter of four wooden spoons, 10 measuring cups, and five rolling pins, sort through what you have and discard or store away any duplicates. This is a super-easy way to reduce your clutter quickly.
4. Discard duplicates.
There's a good chance that once you start sorting through drawers, cupboards, and rooms, you'll come across many items that you have doubles and even triples of. Question whether or not you need duplicates of the items you have and, if not, donate or discard them accordingly. Remember that duplicates aren't always glaringly obvious. For instance, if you own a printer that doubles as a scanner, you don't need an individual scanner as well.
5. Pare down your accessories.
With so many beautiful accessories on sale for reasonable prices, it's easy to get carried away with home styling and buy décor for every table, worktop, and room in your house. But sometimes adorning every surface with a plant, candle, or photo frame can create an overcrowded, forced feeling. Instead, choose a few select pieces to decorate your home and leave other spaces bare.
6. Simplify your color scheme.
If you've ever walked into a house that's painted dark or has a random mix of color palettes, you probably know that these schemes are not conducive to relaxed feelings. If your décor has too much going on, try toning it down. Use neutral color palettes throughout and leave at least one wall in each room free of artwork or pictures.
7. Get critical with your knickknacks.
It's easy to gather belongings that quickly fill up rooms and take over empty spaces. But try to remember that one high-quality item is worth more than five lesser-quality ones. Rather than investing in lots of books to dot around the house, choose a few quality ones that really stand out.