How I learned to simplify, maintain and enjoy a balanced family time in my happy home during quarantine times
So we’ve all been at home with the family for weeks in a row now, so enjoying it enormously while others are going nuts. The Internet instantly got inundated with funny videos about moms getting grey hair in no time and drinking wine for breakfast. How were we, over night, to cope with working from home and at the same time becoming teachers, IT support, chefs,
housekeepers, fitness instructors, nurses, coaches, mediators not to mention remembering there might also be a partner in the equation?
Is there a way to truly enjoy the quarantine instead of getting on each others’ nerves every 5 minutes? I believe so. Honestly, there is no right or wrong. The simple truth is that both of these worlds and feelings are profoundly ok, even if they some days might take us by surprise and happen all at once!
The most important thing is to acknowledge them and at the end of the day, accept them for what they are. Feelings. We are not our feelings. Let’s allow them to come and go. Just like the waves of the ocean. You create your own haven of harmony.
I have 2 young kids, who are now 7 and 4. I love them to bits but with those two a beautiful chaos called life moved in too and hasn’t left since! However, these kids are the purest of joy gifts, and they’ve taught me more than anything that less is more, on so many levels.
In the past few years I’ve decluttered our home and my life so thoroughly that I found my missing peace of the puzzle, became an entrepreneur as a KonMari Consultant & Lifestyle Coach in one go and I now support others choosing joy, organising and creating a home they truly love by simplifying their lives too. And I absolutely love what I do.
What does it mean to simplify?
Simplifying and de-cluttering your life is like an artichoke. Little by little you peel the layers away and with time you reveal the heart of it all. The things that truly matter in life.
Are you able to see beyond what you already have in life? Gratitude goes such a long way and being able to cherish, appreciate and enjoy what is already there in front of our eyes. I’ve put together an introduction to simplifying your life, with small, easy
manageable steps, doable during a quarantine or after. Whenever you feel the time is right.
1. Take down the expectations a level or two
You can’t expect as much from yourself and each other as before the lockdown. You still only have 24 hours in a day and one pair of hands. Relax and take a break. You’re perfectly imperfect just as you are.
2. Presence & grounding
To reduce any potential stress levels the first step for you to do is turn off your phone and decide what kind of (stay-at-home) life you really want and need right now. Sit with the thought and let the answers come to you. Your intuition will help you find the most important things for you. Invite your kids to do the same during a quiet moment. The next step is to take out everything that isn’t what you want right now. And I don’t mean physical items only. We’re talking about social media, TV, the flow of (bad) news, junk food, negative people…you name it.
3. Minimise your to-do list
It’s not the end of the world if you haven’t finished your never ending to-do list or that the kids’ homework is not perfectly done every single day. Do me a favour, cut down your to-do list to only a few carefully selected items for each day. You will notice how much more feasible it feels and maybe you tick them off quicker than you’d expected? Regardless: you are still enough even if you don’t finish a single thing.
4. Gratitude and togetherness
It’s really helped my family to hold regular family gratitude moments to share and truly listen to each other, even if the needs are quite basic for the small ones, they might mean the world to them! The biggest wish for the kids has mainly been about doing a small activity together, all 4 of us. It’s the little things that matter most.
5. A tidy home truly equals a tidy mind
Clutter is simply anything that stands between you and your ideal lifestyle. Your home can be perfectly tidy and still filled with clutter. Or it can also be filled with things and still provide an ideal source of growth. We’re all unique and one size does not fit all of us.
Simplifying is not about minimalism, the amount of belongings or how it looks. What matters is how all these things help and support you move towards your ideal lifestyle. Think about how your home and environment make you feel? If you could get from feelings of overwhelm, maybe even hopelessness to light, happy, airy and joyful…would you do it? Lead by example for your family and start with any small (or big) tidying project that support you feeling amazing in your home.
Tidying is contagious, you might be surprised…
6. Be more with less
Be mindful about what comes in to your home. Shop less if you can, and if you do need to shop, be aware, do some research on the origin, material of the items and working conditions. Make sure you choose well, long lasting and environmentally friendly.
Reduce-Reuse-Recycle-Repurpose is a concept that works perfectly well in any household, especially when you don’t have
direct access to shops right now. And honestly, the less material possessions you own the easier your home and life is to manage and maintain.
7. Tidy tips and slow living
When your home gets (too) messy invite your kids and family to take responsibility of a task or area, share the tasks and be involved. Let each family member visualise their ideal home and make a list of the most important organising goals for everyone. Make a visual list if helpful. Make sure that all things are returned to their homes after being used. As soon as people start leaving things around it will quickly get untidy. Ultimately the aim is to have less to do and to do more of what makes everyone happy!
8. Find your inner Sisu
Sisu is Finnish and has been defined as the word almost describing Finland. It has a vast amount of different meanings, from having guts to strength of will, determination and perseverance to sustaining courage.
Sisu is in my Finnish DNA, it’s almost magical to us. Whatever your worries may be, find your inner Sisu – it will encourage and help you face your challenges. For more tips on home organising, a well balanced happy home and nordic living head over to my blog, visit my website and/or follow me on Instagram.
Stay healthy and happy in your homes!