If you are truly serious about making headway in the clutter wars, we advise you to start small. Certain clean-up activities, like taking on an entire kitchen or a triple garage can take weeks and deplete you of energy and determination. There is nothing quite as satisfying as eliminating an eyesore in a matter of an hour or two. When clients ask for help with domesticating their bedrooms, they typically mean unruly closets and bulging drawers, or what has multiplied under the bed while they were sleeping.
If your intention is to transform a bedroom so messy your own mother is threatening to disinherit you, why not begin with a problem area that is relatively easy to fix? We mean your bedside table. Whether yours is simply a flat surface or furniture that contains shelves or drawers, almost all night tables are subject to similar debris. Most contain some form of lighting, personal electronics and their charger companions, for openers. If you are not willing to risk injury going into the bathroom for a drink in the middle of the night, you need to provide space for requisite water glass. Speaking of glasses, the nightstand must accommodate a pair of specs along with the reading material designed to make you drowsy. Watches and other jewelry often occupy a few more inches of space, as do medications taken at bedtime. Clock radios are another nightstand staple, as are memo pads, half-eaten snacks and the remote control. If there is more than one surface or a drawer or two you are likely to be storing a flashlight, family photos, postage stamps, cosmetic samples, unfilled prescriptions, tissues, an expired bank card and a blank journal or two.
Don’t you think this is a lot to ask of a single piece of furniture measuring a mere 18 inches in diameter? How can you balance your need for access with your desire to be relieved of the burden of CRUD (completely ridiculous useless debris) precisely where you are spending a third of your life?
This problem often requires a two-pronged approach involving evaluation of both the suitability of the furniture as well as the contents. You may deem many of the aforementioned items to be essential, but that doesn’t mean they all have to be visible to the naked eye. Therefore, if you are using a table, consider replacing it with another piece that furnishes storage for the overflow. Drawers with dividers help to keep similar categories together and improve your ability to retrieve things when you need them. Before you go ahead, be sure to comb through the current contents to look for duplication, obsolescence and to weed out stuff that does not belong there like letters from ex-boyfriends who cheated on you. You can do a great deal to improve the functionality and appearance of the surface area by placing a coaster under the water glass to prevent rings, using bowls to hold loose coins and shipping off piles of novels to the welcoming arms a book shelf, keeping only the volume that you are currently reading at hand.