From the moment, you wake up, to the second you crawl into bed – you are at war with the clutter in your house. Your children pour out the bins of toys to clutter the floor in their room, and the paperwork consisting of bills, doctor appointments, and insurance information is piling up on your desk.
If the above scenario, or one much like it, resembles your life you are probably ready for a clutter-cleanse or, as many people like to call it, a de-cluttering session. You can do it, you can de-clutter your house and feel sane in your own home again! You can get back to doing fun things instead of constantly reorganizing the clutter. Just get started, hang in there till the end, and don’t let the clutter continue to run your life.
Say goodbye to clutter with these 5 tips:
1. De-clutter by Category
Instead of going room-to-room to clean and de-clutter your belongings, do it by category. If you go room by room you will run into the problem of having to sort and de-clutter the same things repeatedly. Find toys and books in your room and your kid’s room and the family room? Save time and de-clutter the toys all at once instead of going room-to-room and de-cluttering the toys each time you clean another room. Here are some of the categories you should focus on:
2. Don’t Stop in the Middle
While you are de-junking your life, you will probably be tempted to stop now and then to put the things you have decided you are going to keep away… Don’t. Don’t stop in the middle. Wait until you are done with a specific category before you start putting it away because you will get a better sense of just how much of that category you are keeping – you might find you want to get rid of some more things at the end.
3. Ask the Hard Questions – Answer Honestly
As you go through the items in your house you are bound to run into things you are reluctant to get rid of. Maybe it was a gift? Maybe you plan on using it one day? Maybe you are hoping to lose weight and fit into the shirt later? Whatever the reasons you have for wanting to keep things, you need to ask yourself the following questions and answer them honestly before deciding:
- Do I need this?
- Do I use this?
- Do I like this?
- Does this make me happy?
Answering these questions honestly will help you to get rid of the things you really don’t need in your home.
4. Your Children’s Items
This is a harder category because the items are not yours, they belong to your children. If your children are old enough to help, get them involved in the de-cluttering process. If not, you will need to ask yourself the questions mentioned above for your children, do they still play with this toy? Will they grow into this shirt? Etc.
5. Donate or Toss
When you are done de-cluttering, it is time to get the items you are discarding out of the house. You can donate, toss, sell, or give them away it doesn’t matter. Whatever you decide to do, do so quickly, you do not want the clutter somehow ending up back in your house.
When you have finished de-cluttering you can put the items you are keeping away. If you are serious about the process and you really ask and answer the hard questions you should be getting rid of a LOT of clutter.
This process is just that – a process. If the process takes you a couple of days or even weeks… that is ok. It may take longer if you have little ones around. Remember this quote when you get bogged down with the tasks ahead, “Don’t demand perfection, demand improvement” – Anonymous.
Keeping the Clutter Away
Try to establish the ‘one in, one out’ rule. When you bring something new into the house, try to get rid of one thing as well. This will help keep the clutter down.
Here are a few other tips for keeping the clutter away:
- Put things away daily.
- Designate specific spots for everything in the house.
- Do a small cleanse or declutter session before holidays like Christmas.
Don’t get too disheartened if stuff piles up again, it happens and you can always declutter again. The actual process of decluttering your life can be very soothing and calming, so look at those as opportunities to cleanse your life again.