How to Kondo your kitchen like a pro
Do you ever feel like you’re losing a battle with your belongings? If you are overwhelmed by clutter and the amount of ‘stuff’ you have, you’re far from alone. At least if the two million-plus sales of Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, are anything to go by.
Clutter is anything we keep around the house that does not add value. Being surrounded by more things then we can manage can make us feel overwhelmed. A cluttered kitchen has the same effect, so if you’re looking to clean up your health and diet, the kitchen is a good place to start.
It not only saves us time, it helps us to make better food choices and allows us to experience the pleasure of a functional cooking space.
So let’s get started… This is my guide to Kondo’ing you kitchen.
Start by setting aside some garbage bags and boxes which you can fill with things to either throw away, give away or sell. Make it a fun experience by inviting your friends over (tell them to bring wine), getting the family involved and choosing some good tunes. Set a time limit and embrace the day with a positive attitude.
When it comes to the decluttering process, place all things that you don’t like, can’t use or haven’t used for a while aside. Dispose of old or inedible food and anything that you have now discovered is no longer good for you. Remember to take it step-by-step and only do one drawer, shelf or part of the kitchen at a time.
Once you have decluttered your kitchen and pantry you are now ready to organise what you have. Keep in mind an important rule – if you can’t see it, don’t own it. I always find that organising your items into categories is a great place to start. It allows you to see all the healthy, wholefood ingredients that have been hiding down the back.
Steps to follow for your pantry:
- Organise your cabinets into several categories such as plates, glasses, cutlery, etc.
- Group like-minded items together for easy access and inventory assessment, for example, dried herbs and spices, oils, vinegars and teas.
- Store dry goods in large rectangular clear containers for easy accessibility and visibility.
Steps to follow for your fridge:
- Store condiments, including mustard and sauces in the fridge door
- Keep fruit and veggies in the crisper.
- Group dairy items, eggs and meat together on the lower shelves.
- Store cooked or raw foods in large rectangular clear containers for easy accessibility and visibility.
Overall kitchen tips:
- Save your countertop space for items you use daily (if you don’t use a toaster everyday then store it away).
- Keep salt, pepper, oil and vinegar in a tray on the counter.
- Create a family message centre on the refrigerator or other prominent place and use it for shopping lists, reminders, calendars and phone messages.
- Keep fruit and vegetables that don’t need refrigeration in bowls.
Now that every item has it’s own place, the final step is to tidy up and return things to their rightful place when you’ve finished using them. According to Kondo: “The existence of an item without a home multiplies the chances that your space will become cluttered again.” Keeping your kitchen and pantry in order is as simple as the following this mantra:
- If you take it out, put it back;
- If you open it, close it;
- If you throw it down, pick it up;
- If you make a mess, clean it up;
and so on…
A great habit to establish in your household is to set aside 10 minutes each day to pick up the clutter and clean up. There is no better feeling than waking up to a clean kitchen. So say goodbye to clutter and start enjoying delicious, healthy meals that you have cooked in your delightfully organised home.
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