Managing your home isn’t easy, and even more so if you’re working. You know the struggle is real when you’re trying to make your home look more, well, like a home. Come on, even HDB flats can look Pinteresty. Like this minimalist home that doesn’t even look like an average HDB unit.
Of course, you don’t have to renovate your entire home just to make it more homely. It just has to look less like an eyesore. We spend at least eight hours slaving away at work, and no one wants to go back to a home that’s messy.
Regardless of the role you play at home, you have responsibilities if you have a home. That means cleaning up after mess, keeping your home holistic even when you’re tired – unless you have a domestic helper, which means you don’t have to be a domestic god. You already have one.
If the mess in your home seems like it just keeps accumulating no matter how much you’ve tidied up, it is time to seek Marie Kondo’s advice.
If you haven’t heard of her, this Japanese cleaning consultant shows how to properly simplify and organise your home. According to Marie, home management is not about how much (or little) storage you have to organise items. “I have yet to see a house that lacked sufficient storage. The real problem is that we have far more than we need or want.”
The best part of learning her “Konmari” method is that you’ll never have to do it again, according to Marie. Unlike conventional methods of tackling the mess on a room-by-room basis, Marie advocates a category-by-category method, which is great because you won’t be fated to the unending task of putting away random piles. Read through and you’ll find that your home is gradually adopting a minimalist concept without you even realising it. That’s perfect for compact living in Singapore.
Borrow it here.
Marie Kondo also has an illustrated guide for decluttering your home, for those looking for an in-depth guide.
In this book, she focuses on what you want to keep, rather than what you want to get rid of. According to Marie Kondo, “Discarding is not the point; what matters is keeping those things that bring you joy. If you discard everything until you have nothing left but an empty house, I don’t think you’ll be happy living there. Our goal in tidying should be to create a living environment filled with the things we love.”
Like the title suggests, she encourages her readers to ask themselves if an item “sparks joy”. By asking that for every item in your home, it becomes easier to understand what you need in your home and life.
While The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up introduces readers to the basics of Marie’s “Konmari” method of tidying up, this book is her masterclass – an in-depth guide on decluttering and organising a home. Both books guide readers to create an environment that’s joyful for them and their loved ones. As you go deeper into this book, you’ll realise that a home isn’t just about looking good, it’s about how it makes you feel. Think of it as filling your home with joy, rather than cleaning it out.
However, if you want a bit of comic relief to balance out all that zen aura, check out Confessions of a Domestic Failure by Bunmi Laditan.
This story of Ashley Keller is probably a story about some of us who are miserably struggling to navigate the world of Pinterest-perfect, Facebook-fantastic and Instagram-impressive mums. Bunmi Laditan’s piece is sure to put a smile on readers, if not induce a thigh-slapping laughter session.
Through a character that is flawed and yet lovable, Ashley tackles the social pressure placed on parents in this digital age.
In Ashley Keller’s life, Facebook is “where moms like me post about how much we love the husbands who annoy the living bejesus out of us, and share expertly edited photos of our kids and generally talk about our loves like we’re living in an enchanted fairy tale blessed by rainbow angel unicorns. In short, it’s for lying.” And yet, she’s addicted to it. While the storyline is a little basic, Bunmi’s charm shines through her wit and ability to put the funny in every situation. At the heart of his book is a reminder to all parents that there’s no way to be perfect, but there are many ways to be great.
So don’t worry about being the perfect domestic god. Read these books and you’ll do (and feel) fine.