Decluttering is the process of deciding what to do with each and every item you have. It’s a lot of work, but it doesn’t need to be overwhelming! Here are some ideas for how to declutter.
When you’re organizing your house, you’re organizing YOUR house. This means that you make up the rules. You get to decide what goes in it, how much goes in it, and what to let go of. That’s a lot of power! To determine what you want to stay in your home, ask questions like:
- Do I love it?
- Do I need it?
- Can someone else use this more than me?
Break it Down
Daunting tasks seem a lot more manageable when broken down into chunks. Decluttering the whole house? That’s a lot to imagine. Decluttering the bathroom? Now we’re getting somewhere. There are lots of strategies for breaking down difficult tasks, like:
- Categories: Start by organizing one type of item, like your books. Or you can go room by room.
- Time: Set a timer and organize for a set amount of time. Start small. It may sound silly, but try organizing for just five minutes. If you get to the end of five minutes and you’re ready to quit, that’s all right! You’ve gotten something done. If you’re still in the zone, go with it and keep organizing.
- Low-hanging fruit: There’s stuff in your house you KNOW you don’t want anymore. Never want to see another white sock? Go through the house, collect every white sock you see, and donate them. Once you get the hang of parting with items you already want to part with, you’ll have an easier time doing the rest.
Have a Plan
You’ve gone through all of your dishes and you know exactly what stays and what goes. But what are you going to do with the dishes that you’re ready to let go? To avoid having a pile of stuff you don’t want sitting around the house, come up with a plan for unwanted items prior to decluttering.
There are four common roadblocks that trip people up when it comes to decluttering. Knowing what they are makes them easier to spot while you’re working, so you’re not surprised in the moment. These are:
- Gifts: I find a lot of people have a hard time letting go of gifts. What if the person that gave it to them finds out they donated it? I reframe it this way: the gift giver wanted you to enjoy the gift they gave. If you’re not enjoying the gift, you’re perfectly allowed to let it go.
- Don’t know where to start: I recommend starting with a small area first. Want to declutter your kitchen? Start with the silverware drawer. It’ll give you practice, and you’ll feel accomplished when you’re done!
- What if I need it later? If you have a specific use for an item AND you have an actual timeframe for when you’ll use it, it’s okay to store something. Otherwise, let it go and get a replacement if/when it becomes necessary.
- Sentimental items: I cover it in more detail in this post, but the gist of it is that items are not the memories they represent, and there are several space-conscious ways of keeping those special memories.
Do you have questions about how to declutter? Comment them below for advice!