Many seniors prefer living in apartments in vibrant and active senior living communities. Lots of well-maintained community areas, activities, friends, and dining means living in a smaller space makes a lot of sense as you get older. You have less to clean, less to take care of, and more time for the things you really want to be doing! But a smaller space means clutter appears all too easily, and can turn a beautiful home into a stressful mess. Here are 3 decluttering tips for senior apartment living.
Only Keep Things You Actually Love
We are all given gifts that we deeply appreciate, but perhaps don’t actually love. Maybe that sweater used to be a favorite when it fit, but that was two decades ago. Your tastes evolve over time, and things you used to like might not be things you love today. Practice letting go of objects you don’t truly love.
If this feels wasteful to you, shift your perspective with some tips from Marie Kondo. If an object was a gift, it has served its purpose by allowing the giver to share it with you. You have experienced the joy and appreciation of receiving it. Since it has now fulfilled its purpose, it can be passed on to someone else who might love it. If you loved something when you bought it, but it no longer resonates with you, remember the happiness you felt when buying it. It has served its purpose by bringing you that happiness, and it’s okay to let it go now. If you donate these unloved items to family members, secondhand stores, or charity shops, you give these things new life and new purpose. You can check out Marie Kondo’s book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up for more about this idea of only keeping things you truly love.
Use Technology to Store Paperwork
Storing loads of files and paperwork can look messy and cluttered fast, and take up lots of valuable space. You can use technology to store these items instead, and as a bonus, they’re much easier to find and can’t be lost. Just use a phone, digital camera, or desktop scanner to scan or take photos of your paperwork. Then, upload it to a cloud storage space online. Digital cloud services like Dropbox or Google Drive are free and easy to use.
Make sure to give the files detailed names and create digital folders so that your paperwork stays organized online. If you have a lot of papers, or are struggling with technology, you may wish to use a company that offers professional document imaging services. You could also ask a friend or relative who is more confident with technology to help you scan and store your paperwork or photographs digitally.
Use Smart Storage
Storage containers are a great way to contain small items that can appear cluttered. Use decorative baskets, boxes, or trays to corral like items together. For example, place all your knick-knacks together on a tray, and they will instantly look more organized. Use a basket to hold books on your nightstand. Stackable plastic boxes can contain items that might be cluttering your bathroom counters. You can also store and rotate decorative items like photos, vases, candles, and other tchotchkes. Instead of having everything out at once, display only a few items and store the rest in a box under your bed or in your closet. Whenever you want to freshen up your decor, you can switch the decorations out with other things from the box.
These 3 decluttering tips for senior apartment living will keep your apartment feeling fresh, clean, and organized this year. If you are looking for a new senior living apartment, check out one of Stellar Living’s communities near you. For more information on this topic, you might want to read these tips for small space living and check out this post on how to make your home your happy place.