Try the ‘Five Things’ Method When You Need to Tidy Your Home But Have Zero Energy

Photo of author
Written By Rivera Claudia

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur pulvinar ligula augue quis venenatis. 

Finding the motivation to tidy up your space can feel impossible when you’re faced with a mountain of dirty dishes, a floor buried under a pile of wrinkly clothes, and clutter everywhere—especially if you’re already overwhelmed. Putting all your crap away isn’t, in fact, an insurmountable task, though (you’ve got this!), and there’s a therapist-approved trick that can make the mess a lot more manageable.

“When the sea of stuff starts to make you feel panicky, take a deep breath and remember that no matter how much clutter there is, there are really only five item categories in any room: trash, dishes, laundry, things that have a place, and things that don’t,” KC Davis, LPC, Houston-based therapist and author of How to Keep House While Drowning, previously wrote for SELF. If you address each of these messes individually, decluttering will be much less intimidating, Davis says.

So here’s exactly how her “five things” strategy works: Start by gathering all your miscellaneous trash in a bag—empty water bottles, granola bar wrappers, clothing price tags, whatever—and leave it by your front door. Next, place any used dishes in the sink, then pivot to tossing dirty laundry (any sweaty gym clothes, say, or stray socks) into the hamper. You don’t actually have to complete these chores just yet, by the way: The point, according to Davis, is that by simply organizing your clutter, you’ll start seeing some progress, which can keep you motivated.

Now that the trash, dishes, and laundry are sorted, it’s time to “put away all the items in the room that have a place,” Davis says. Maybe your kids’ toys belong in a basket. Your sneakers, which are currently on your doormat, should be on the shoe rack in your closet, and your copy of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is supposed to be on a bookshelf.

“Then, make a pile of the things that don’t [have a place],” Davis suggests—which could include things like your partner’s spare earbuds or any new purchases you’ve been meaning to return. “You can then either spend time finding permanent homes for the stuff in the no-place pile,” like a designated junk drawer, perhaps, “or set that aside in a basket, bag, or bin for another day,” she adds. After this, you can finally take out the trash, wash those dishes, or maybe even start a load of laundry.

The genius of this method: according to Davis: “It relieves the decision fatigue of trying to pick up each item and individually make a bunch of choices about it.” In other words, instead of agonizing over where each skin care product or baseball cap goes, you really only have five categories to worry about. “It gives your brain multiple little finish lines to feel good about, and the room becomes very tidy very quickly,” she adds.

We can’t promise that tackling your clutter in five steps will be fun, but at least this strategy can make the process feel doable—and hopefully, Davis says, “you’ll find that tidying the room is less overwhelming and goes much quicker than you expect.”

Related:

SOURCE

Leave a Comment

data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data data