Hack the Kids Bedroom

So as a parent, we know that simply cleaning our child's room isn't the fix to a forever messy room. It takes discipline on our part to find a system that works best for our child, implement that system, ensure that the system is working, and revise the system according to what works.

But who has time for algorithms and detective work just to keep our kids' room clean?! No worries. Here are some tried and true habits to help you to assist your little one's in keeping their own space tidy. Best of all these tips can be easily integrated into your child's daily routine, and doesn't bare too heavy on your own time and energy.

1. PURGE PURGE PURGE. Go through your child's toys, clothes, and shoes and separate toys that they don't play with anymore and clothes that they have grown out of. After your initial "liquidation" continue this habit regularly. Keep a donation box accessible for easy tossing and take it to your favorite shelter when it fills up. When you make it a habit to keep clutter out of their room, you keep clutter out of their lives.

2. Buy less junk. When shopping, resist the urge to fall prey to you child's persistent begging by doing the grocery shopping without them. Then, before dropping that item into the shopping cart, ask yourself "Will this add value to my family's life?" If it is an impulse purchase, it probably won't add much, if any value to your life.

Toys get lost, broken, and forgotten sometimes before you even get them to the car! So try to make the toys you purchase conducive to your child's talents, skills, and interests. This will ensure maximum play with the things they like the most. So don't just get Little Timmy a football when he's a bookworm.  This can ward off any potential buyer's remorse that may be lurking around in the shadows your purchase.

Apologies for the terrible quality.
3. Adopt the "Everything Has a Place" mentality. Humans tend to remember things by the last place they saw it or found it. Therefore, establishing a place for each item will help your babies to remember where things are when they need it, establishing consistency. 
This will help your kids kick the habit of sitting things down and leaving them. Explain to them the importance of putting things back where they belong immediately. Pitch to them the benefits of having their toys available to play with "on the spot", not after much searching, frustration, and possible tears.  

Only keep toys, clothes, and shoes that are in current use. 
Broken and outdated items should be recycled or donated .

Don't forget that walls are a gold-mine for space saving storage. 
Attach fabric cubes to your walls to easily store frequently used toys. 

4. Teach them to keep a Watchful Eye. This means to stay on the lookout for out-of-place items. Help your child to keep their room tidy by spotting misplaced items and returning them to their rightful home. Make a game of it and turn your little one into a "Clutter Detective".

Remind them to make their bed's along with their usual morning 
routine. This instantly cleans up 25% of their room.
5. Begin a Start and End of the day routine. Help them to incorporate making their beds into their morning routine - this alone can transform a room's energy. And add a 5 minute "Quick Tidy-up" before bed. Waking up to a clean room has beneficial psychological effects and will get their day started with less "hiccups" and delays.

6. Keep it Light-Hearted. Remember that the transition to a consistently tidy room, takes practice so keep an open mind. Be tolerant of mistakes.  Reward their efforts and a job well-done. And be prepared to repeat, repeat, repeat!

Add these tips to your family's life gradually and tweak where necessary. And don't forget, you aren't just making your own life easier with a few lifestyle changes, you are changing the lifestyle habits of generations to come. Your children will thank you when they have little ones of their own. And isn't that what every parent wants; for their kid to listen?

So what are your tried and true Tidy Home Habits? 

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