Meet our decluttering dynamos, Lowri Kramcha and Claire Davies from The Organised Lifestyle Co, your guides to a more serene family space.
In the chaos of family life, they're here to cut through the clutter, making your home a haven for well-being. Join us as we chat about the magic of organisation, connecting the dots between tidying up and family wellness. Ready to bring peace and order to your home? Let's dive in!
How does decluttering and organising contribute to a sense of wellness and harmony within a family home?
As busy working parents ourselves, we know just how crazy the household can get...the morning rush to get everyone up and out the door for example, 9 times out of 10 will turn into one big slanging match between family members! But, with just a few simple habitual changes you can at least ensure that everyone knows where specific items are at any given time. Such as, where each item of clothing is kept or which cupboard or drawer the drinks bottles live in, this can make all a huge difference in maintaining a harmonious atmosphere when you need it the most.
Can you explain the connection between a clutter-free environment and improved mental well-being for both adults and children?
To name a few, clutter is likely to affect everything from our body weight, relationships, anxiety levels to sleep quality and even more so, our ability to focus. For adults, a clutter-free home or environment can make us far more productive, reduce stress and overwhelm and this will ultimately lead to a much better relationship with our kids.
For children, a chaotic and cluttered environment also means a lack of focus, which can in some cases lead to having a developmental impact on their learning, especially for little ones. It can make it hard for them to relax & you might find them to be in a constant state of unease. Adapting a form of minimalism can create a much calmer space for your precious babies - for example, having fewer toys means less mess and less visual clutter. It also encourages more creative play.
What are your top tips for creating designated spaces in the home that promote relaxation, mindfulness, and a sense of calm for the entire family?
Oh this is always our favourite part! We feel designated "relaxing" areas play an important role in creating a sense of calm for both adults and children. These spaces will often have more exposure to natural light, and we would encourage the use of house plants or flowers. We love making reading nooks and re-styling living areas to promote serenity and mindfulness. It’s also important to add that you don’t need a big house or lots of spare cash to put these things into place, it just takes imagination and more often than not, a good declutter session beforehand.
How can decluttering and organising help reduce stress and create a more peaceful atmosphere in the home?
Now, we come at you with science! :)
Our parasympathetic nervous system (or PSNS for short) is a network of nerves that relax our bodies after a period of stress or danger. The parasympathetic nervous system follows your sympathetic system (your fight or flight response to stress or danger) and when the danger is really and truly over, your body will hit its brakes and your parasympathetic system will kick in and start work on turning off your stress reaction.
When it comes to your home environment - a messy and cluttered home with lots of visual noise can act a chronic stressor. Have you ever felt reluctant to get up from bed in the morning because your kitchen is so messy and overwhelming? This is your sympathetic nervous system preparing you for stress (yes, as soon as you’ve opened your eyes) Constantly dealing with chronic stressor like this means our bodies always think there is danger and our PSNS never gets a chance to kick in and cool us off.
Our brains like order! By taking steps to make small habitual changes, we can make sure we are one step ahead all the time, a clutter free and tidy environment will help you to focus and take on tasks with less distraction. It can make you look forward to getting up in the morning :)
Do you have any specific recommendations for incorporating natural elements and greenery into the home to enhance the overall wellness of the family?
Foliage Foliage Foliage! We can’t get enough! Plants are a natural de-stressor and are of course aesthetically pleasing! We're particularly loving the snake plant at the moment; it stores up oxygen through the day and releases it through the night which is why we love it in the bedroom. It also very low maintenance which is great!
We also love a good scent and have even designed our own candle using our favourites lemongrass and ginseng.
How do you approach decluttering and organising personal spaces, such as bedrooms and bathrooms, to create a sanctuary for relaxation and self-care within a family home?
Bedrooms are such important spaces in the home. We need this room to be as relaxing as possible to ensure a good night’s rest if nothing else! When we're working on a client’s home we will often push to start in their bedroom. First and foremost, we help and encourage our clients to remove excess items such as clothes and so on, as we feel this is the basis of a calm and collected environment - we want to eradicate the "busy-ness" in this room in particular.
We try to keep display items to a minimum as we don’t want lots of small items cluttering up surfaces. But in the interest of practicality the trick is to use stylish storage like chic baskets or containers to always keep essentials such as jewellery or make up close to hand. Using stackable designs can save much needed space.
With bathrooms, we tend to "think like a guest" it’s a trick that worked for us for many years!
Are there any specific decluttering techniques or methods that you recommend for maintaining balance and wellness in a family environment?
We really believe it’s important to explore the follow on journey of the items that are leaving our clients. It’s always a great starting point when doing a declutter. If a client struggles to part with items such as clothing, it’s important to discuss where they are going and who they will be serving and how by letting go of these items you will be one step closer to the mental clarity you need to function more effectively. It’s a process and we cannot cut corners.
Can you share any success stories or examples where decluttering and organising had a transformative effect on the overall wellness and happiness of a family?
Many of the families we work with have children diagnosed with some form of ASD. Having worked on playrooms in particular, we've taken away the unnecessary clutter which can often derail a child's focus and we've created a distraction free environment.
In one particular home, we used visual supports and colour coding systems, then organised toys and art supplies into labelled bins. This made the room much more functional and less overwhelming for a young boy who had a diagnosis of ADHD.
What are your thoughts on the long-term benefits of decluttering and organising for family wellness, and how can families sustain an organised and harmonious environment over time?
Living an organised life can be life changing, it increases self-worth, helps you sustain a healthy lifestyle with more energy (not to mention more space) it increases productivity and efficiency.. we could go on!
Although, decluttering your home once is one thing, keeping it that way is another - we always tell our clients to think about the immediate future, how will things change for me if I don’t keep this up? Is it worth not taking those 3.8 seconds to put this item in its rightful place?
When it comes to ridding of an item - if it’s not "HELL YESS" then it’s a no :-)
You can keep up to date with top tips and advice from Claire and Lowri over at www.theorganisedlifestyleco.co.uk or on Instagram @the_organised_lifestyle_co