Do you have a room (or house) that has been taken over by unused, broken, outgrown items?
Are you embarrassed to have company over because of all the clutter?
It’s time to take back control of your space! You deserve to be able to walk in and feel at peace. It is impossible to feel calm and serene in your home when they are piles of paper, lost car keys, a sink filled high with dirty dishes, and closets that are stuffed full.
I have had my moments when it was easier to close the door and walk away than to deal with the mess. In the long run, a cluttered house costs me so much time, money, and energy.
I still remember the feeling I had after my first big purge of clutter. My first project was the kids’ playroom. I blocked out a whole weekend to tackle the room; with trash bags, containers, and a glass of wine waiting for me as a reward, I got started.
When I was done a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. Removing the broken and unused toys allowed my kids to find the toys that they loved. It was easier to organize and keep clean. For weeks I would just walk into that room in awe of what I was able to accomplish. The organized shelves brought me so much happiness.
After that weekend, I dedicated whatever time I had to decluttering and minimizing my house. The process took me a few years to purge every room, drawer, and closet in my house. Yes, it took time but it was worth it.
3 Ways to Declutter Without Losing Your Mind
Step 1: The PLAN
- Find Motivation Create a board on Pinterest with how you want your room to look. Read Spark Joy by Mari Kon or watch The Minimalist Less is Now on Netflix to help inspire you on your new journey.
- Where to Start Set yourself up to succeed. Look back on past challenges that you have tried. You are in control of your decluttering project, which means you need to set the pace that will allow you to succeed. If you know that you will start off strong but may fizzle out, then pick a drawer or a closet. If you know that you will keep going until the project is done start with a closet or a room that may not need as much work like a bathroom. If this is not your first rodeo, push yourself to tackle that room.
- What to do With the Junk Before you even start, know that you will be letting go of items that you no longer need or have not used in years. Donate it to someone who can get good use out of it. Before you start, find a company that can come to your house and pick up your donation pile.
Check out the list of charities that offer free pick up:
Salvation Army - satruck.org/donate/choose
Goodwill - Goodwill.org/locator.
Habitat for Humanity - habitat.org/stories/does-habitat-offer-furniture-donation-pickup
o PRO TIP – SCHEDULE YOUR PICK UP BEFORE YOU EVEN START YOUR PROJECT, THE DEADLINE WILL HELP GET YOUR DECLUTTER PROJECT DONE ON TIME!
Step 2: Get to Work
- Three Piles If you have a hard time getting started try this method. Create three sections. One pile for trash (I skip the pile and put it straight into a large trash bag). One pile for donation (“maybe” pile) and one pile for keep. As you move through your decluttering project quickly throw away anything that is broken, missing pieces or is no longer useable. Put the items you use and are special in the keep pile. Everything else goes into the donation / “maybe” pile.
- Clean Once you have cleared the area, give it a good cleaning and make any repairs needed.
- Organize Now it is time to put everything back. Check out these pro tips.
o Keep most used items in easy to reach place
o Keep likes with likes. Here are a few examples:
§ Playroom - Separate the toys into different bins: One for cars, Legos, blocks, etc
§ Bathroom - Separate medications in bins: one for pain, one for cough and cold, one for kids, one for tummy troubles
§ Kitchen - Have a shelf for cereal and breakfast, one for snacks, one for baking
Step 3: Reward
- Final Touch This is the fun part, now that your space is clean and organized, reward yourself by adding in something special. I love to use items that have meaning, maybe something I had in storage that I now have space to keep on display. Or maybe some new throw pillows or duvet cover.