Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Zen and the Art of Cleaning

Phew! I've just spent two days decluttering my kitchen and scrubbing it from top to bottom and corner to corner. What a way to spend a Sunday and a holiday Monday! However, I am so glad I tackled it. It's been bugging me for some time now. The cupboards were full to bursting, everything was muddled-up and the counter-tops had become just further storage space. I'd been planning the big clean for several weeks now.
Why did I let things get so bad though. Time is a big factor - just not enough of it. So while I knew I needed to do something about it, there was just never the time to do it. Hoarding is another big factor. I just seem to have trouble throwing things away - I'm not going to go into lists of stuff I had and have now thrown out but one example would be receipts and instruction booklets for appliances that have long since gone to the big scrapyard in the sky. I'm also prone to taking other people's 'rubbish'. I think when family and friends don't really want to part with something but feel they have to, they bring it to me because they know I'll hold on to it, so that makes it easier for them. The other factor has to be organisation - or lack of it. Nothing was organised or in it's right place. At one time there was a place for everything - but recently everything been fighting to have any piece of space at all.
But no more! A place for everything and everything in it's place - my new mantra! Everything shining and sparkly clean. And, I have counter-tops again! I decided to rid myself of just about everything that doesn't get used and a few tins of things that had got to the back of the cupboard and were past their use by dates. I cleaned the ceiling, the tops of the cupboards, inside them and the fronts - there is not a part of that kitchen that has not been cleaned. I've done so much that I actually feel like I've had an intensive workout. My muscles ache like I don't know what!
But what's all this got to do with PLAN A. Well I worked out recently that if things are in chaos around me and I'm under stress with work then the chaos seems to intensify. My home has to be my sanctuary and it can't be that if every time I open a cupboard something falls out. So part of my plan is about bringing order to my life where I can.
I keep going into the kitchen now and looking round and feeling great satisfaction. One room down - several more to go!


Eryl Shields said...

Well done! I love a well ordered kitchen I can think of nothing more satisfying than walking into my kitchen and seeing space. I've never cleaned the ceiling though, must do that

Kim Ayres said...

Seriously impressive!

Todd HellsKitchen said...

I know what you mean!

eg(scotland) said...

Eryl, Kim & Todd

Thanks for your comments. Moved on to the livingroom today (looks like I'm going to spend my week off cleaning) - anyway another one done. Only thing is that today's effort has resulted in a pile of books and mags being moved into another room. I now need to fix that - but I'm running out of steam!

Day of rest tomorrow I think!


Mary Witzl said...

I feel sick with envy.

I too am a hoarder, but I'm a reformed one. I have spent my life tackling this problem and I can now do what I could never do before: I can GET RID OF USELESS JUNK. But life is never simple, and now I have kids who have inherited my problem but not yet learned to deal with it, and a husband who seems to be incapable of following the 'A place for everything' rule that I quote ad nauseam, but to absolutely no avail. And you ought to see my kitchen...

eg(scotland) said...

Mary - My Dom God was always quite good in that respect but alas I think that over the last few years, he's picked-up some bad habits from me.

Once I get through the rooms in the house, I plan to tackle the attic. I'll need to take a week off work to do that!


Dissing Dave said...

Eg(Scotland) WOW and phew!

I have to say that Mrs Dissing keeps quoting the place for everything mantra at me. However, from experience when she puts things in their place, particularly the safe place, we are unable to find them again!

Although I do do the clean kitchen thing. The kitchen is my creative space and shall remain clear of clutter!

DD out

Caroline said...

Hey EG
Well done with the cleaning..wanna come round to mine and do my kitchen?
I need a de clutter everywhere, but tomorrow is the spring fayre at school, so I have got 6 boxes of bric a brac ( wonder why it's called that?)
Keep up the good work

eg(scotland) said...

Hi Dissing Dave & Caroline - thanks for your comments. Sorry I've been so long in reading them but I've had no internet access since Thursday. Just about climbing the wall! Hope you'll look out for my next post on Communication (probably tomorrow or Thursday).

Kitchen still sparkling - as soon as I see a crumb I'm tidying it up - can't possibly last!


hazel love said...

Dearest EG, all credit to you! I think we live in one of the smallest houses in the world, but cleaning and tidying it is akin to the Forth Bridge.

You see, my main problem is finding a place to put the boy.

I can't help feeling that if I had a place for him, all his cr*p may just go in there too...

eg(scotland) said...

Hazel Love - oh yes the Forth Bridge, that's what keeping tidy here feels like. I'm getting worried now because I keep saying "where does the dust keep coming from". I sound like my Granny (God bless) never mind my Mother!


Ming_the_Merciless said...

Cleaning can be cathartic. I, of all people, know that.

Mr. Procrastinator 2007; First-Runner Up, Mr. Procrastinator 2006

Norina said...

Well said.