A Clean Sweep

Following the whirlwind of festivities that bookend each year is a period of quiet that’s both bittersweet and solemn. It drives many to look back on the preceding months, reevaluating their achievements and goals, maybe set a new one or two. For some, this is a time for rest. To others, it’s a sign to jump right back into their careers and personal projects, taking advantage of the promise of new beginnings.

In the previous half of this two-part guide, we looked towards Japanese lifestyle retailer MUJI and their vision of a Compact Life for tips and suggestions to organising our home’s living and dining spaces. The concept, which envisions a “simple, pleasant life” that suits each individual’s personality and habits, has informed the brand’s range of homeware products: minimal and unassuming, they aim to provide users with just what is necessary.

As we turn our attention to our resting and working spaces, it’s perhaps equally—if not more—imperative that these parts of our homes are outfitted in ways that best complement our lifestyles. Clutter-free desks promote clarity of thought and encourage ideas to spill forth, while bedrooms free of distractions help us re-centre and pave the way for restful sleep.


A bedroom, ideally, should be clear of items that stimulate the mind. Rather, it should facilitate relaxation and repose, and serve as a retreat from a multitude of environmental stressors. Yet this is not always possible; in smaller homes, our bedrooms often house our desks as well, which means we’re rarely more than 10 feet away from the demands of work.


Compact Life by MUJI a clean sweep

More often than not, we think of our desks as our workspaces. But in fact, the rooms we work in—whether at home or in offices—can often influence our productivity levels too. Rooms that are kept organised promote concentration and foster conducive environments for work, while cutting down on the amount of time we spend looking for things like paperwork or stationery.

Read more in The U Press N˚15 (Singapore edition).