I’m a hypocrite. I bang on about decluttering all the time and a clear counter top is one of the most important elements of a well run kitchen I would argue. Yet I know full well that I have stuff on there that could be stored away.
‘Hah! Busted!’ I hear you say.
But here’s the thing…
Break the rules
Well, the thing with any rule or guideline is that you have to make it work for yourself. It’s no good when the rule is fab but doesn’t fit your own lifestyle or preferences. Of course that doesn’t mean that you should toss all the rules out the window. If you did that no change would be possible. So it becomes a gentle balance between what you want to achieve and what your lifestyle currently is.
3 simple steps
Spring is a great time to start fresh and clean out. Following the three steps below you can enjoy your clear counter top in no time. Be gentle with yourself. This exercise is not meant to be tough but a first step in the direction of a simpler, minimalist approach to life. I’m all for a great big spring do-over but it’s hard to find the time and make it a priority. So I’m for small steps in the right direction and a clear counter top will have an immediate impact.
1. Ask yourself what the goal is and why.
For me a clean and clutter free kitchen is a key element to enjoy home cooking. You simply feel more like creating something yummy, wholesome and nourishing when you don’t have to move lots of things out of the way first. That feels like a chore before you even started. And, bonus: the clean up afterwards is also a lot quicker if you don’t have to wipe around stuff.
So my main goal is:
Creating a more relaxed and enjoyable cooking experience.
Why: Because then I feel like cooking from scratch more often.
But there are other great reason’s to declutter your kitchen and counter top. It is important that you choose one that rings true for you the most.
Your goal could be to eat healthier (and less). “The 2016 study Clutter, Chaos and Overconsumption: The role of mind-set in stressful and chaotic food environments showed people were more susceptible to snack on highly calorific foods in times of stress if they were in a chaotic environment.” writes Jessica Irvine in last week’s Sunday Age. How fascinating! It’s now scientifically proven that if you are after a healthier lifestyle, a clutter free kitchen is the first step in the right direction.
Joshua Becker’s article names a few more reasons for a decluttered kitchen that may be important to you:
It sets the culture for the entire home. A clutter free kitchen communicates calm and order, […] saves time, and promotes cleanliness.
Cluttered counters can contribute to physical stress. Often we don’t realize how much clutter contributes to our stress levels until we let go of it.
Clutter attracts clutter. We all know that to be true, don’t we.
Whatever your main goal is, be clear on what you are trying to achieve and why that is important to you. This will make it a lot easier to decide what can stay and what should go.
2. Be honest with yourself about your habits and priorities.
Now, having said that, you need to asses which bits that may be clutter to others, are treasures to you. Which pieces do you use so often or love the look of, that it justifies the spot on the countertop. Be ruthless though!
These are the items I keep up there and why:
- Wooden chopping board. I use it daily, even just to make sandwiches on.
- Kettle. I use it all. the. time.
- Kitchen Aid. I don’t use it as often but it is super heavy and if I had to lift it in and out of cupboards every time, it would be very inconvenient and keep me from using it. Plus: I LOVE the look of it. So homely.
- A tray of tea and coffee items. This could arguable also be in a cupboard but I love having it out. I make a filter coffee almost every morning and we have green tea in the afternoon and evening. Having lemon and ginger at the ready also means we make it more often, rather than thinking about it and then putting it into the ‘too hard’ basket. So this is my personal bit of clutter that fills me with joy. In order to make it work I confine it to the tray, which can be easily moved when I’m cooking.
3. Assess your choices and find a home for everything else.
Look at your choices of what to keep and see if you can group something together like I did with the tea and coffee tray. Especially if you are short on space it will make all the difference if you can move things quickly and in one go.
It will be relatively easy to find new homes for everything else and what you’ll be left with is a clear counter top! Ready for you to make a meal and clean up afterwards without any fuss. Less is more. Less stuff on the counter top means more cooking!
I would love to hear what items you have decided to keep on your counter top! Leave me a comment below so we can chat about our favourite kitchen clutter.
Much love and always be kind to yourself!