Are you drowning in stuff? Are you tired of never getting ahead on your bills? Have you ever dreamed of chucking it all to live in a cabin in the woods? My husband Dale and I did. Though our house is small—just 480 square feet—we are, in fact, Living Large. We don’t spend extra time cleaning and maintaining our house; we don’t buy things we don’t need; and we’ve grown emotionally (as well as physically) closer. We’ve found ourselves part of the tiny house movement, which has captured the imagination of the media and many others in our hurried, harried society. I believe that the tiny house movement is not about the square footage of the houses. Rather, it’s about the life you live in them. No matter what size your house is, you too can Live Large by following these principles for simplifying your life.
Give every item in your house its own home
Dale and I adopted the motto, “a place for everything and everything in its place.” Last winter, which was especially cold and harsh, Dale and I were sick multiple times and we both had a busy work schedule. We really didn’t physically feel good enough to make sure everything was put back where it was supposed to go. By the time spring came around, our kitchen table was full of junk and our kitchen counters were overflowing with bottles of spices, the toaster, and other assorted things that needed to be put away. After we spent an entire weekend cleaning and organizing the cabinets and laundry pantry, our house felt lighter and brighter. Once it was back in order, we resumed our routine of being able to clean it from top to bottom in about an hour. These storage tricks can also help control clutter.
Think “one in, one out”
If I purchase a piece of clothing, for example, another piece of clothing has to go. It might not hit the door immediately, but it will during the next rotation of the closet, which happens twice a year in conjunction with the major change of seasons. You can feel good about getting rid of these items in your closet.