A cluttered home is not necessarily a personal failure – except in the case of obsessive-compulsive hoarding behavior – but rather a sign of a life well lived. It’s normal to have some prized possessions and even a collection or two. Things become a problem when vital aspects such as home repair and upkeep are neglected. It might start with a chip in the paint but very soon this can escalate and the home can look shabby. Thus, it is not only important to stay organized, but it is also beneficial health-wise for your aging loved one. This article will offer some tips for your aging loved one to stay organized.
Make a To-Do List
Unless your loved one is confident that the home can be organized in less than an afternoon, it’s probably best to make a list of things that have to be done. While it’s true that seeing the sheer magnitude of work to be completed can be overwhelming, your loved one will also need to realistically appraise the situation. With a pen and paper or any digital notetaking app, just jot down what needs to be done. Don’t worry about the sequence just yet. After writing down the things that are at the top of the head, your loved one could walk around the house room by room, and take note of the problem areas. At the end of this, there will be a list of things to declutter, what requires renovation, and what to get rid of.
Plan it Out
Now that your loved one has the information, it’s time to tackle things step by step. It may be a good idea to group similar tasks together. For example, if your loved one wants to get rid of furniture or bulky items from both the living room and garage, it is best to do it all in one shot. This has the added benefit of making the decluttering project feel more manageable. Perhaps your loved one could group the to-do list by tasks that they could do alone, tasks they need family members to help out with, and tasks in which professional help is needed. If the project is more long-term, your loved one could start setting aside time on the calendar when they are free to implement the plans.
Maintain the House
That feeling when everything on the to-do list is finally accomplished is like no other. However, If your loved one is not careful, they might just end up where they started! To make sure that your loved one’s newly organized home stays pristine, they will need to maintain it. The best way to do this is to have a “slow burn” rather than a “heavy lift”. For example, instead of clearing clutter weekly or monthly, your loved one could prevent clutter from building up in the first place by tidying up every day. Your loved one could also have a fixed day every month when they clean one of the rooms. This will mean that your loved one does not have to clean as frequently but the house will still be maintained.