16 Decluttering Tips to Conquer the Mess Around You Today
In the words of Einstein there are “Three Rules of Work: Out of clutter find simplicity; From discord find harmony; In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” – Albert Einstein.
Despite the fact that most of us have an ideal of an uncluttered home or workplace many of us believe it is only a dream. It can be quite overwhelming to start decluttering and this can often prevent you ever getting started.
These 16 tips are an ideal way to get over this and start making changes in your home just 5 minutes at a time.
It’s all about baby steps and although 5 minutes won’t make a huge impact if you keep taking 5 minutes when you have them to spare you’ll get there gradually. Who knows you may get into it and spend longer than the five minutes but the main thing is you will have made a start. Before you know it you’ll have cleared your whole wardrobe and then half your house.
So here they are; 16 ways to start clearing your house today!
1. Create a place for incoming papers
It’s amazing the amount of paperwork we receive through the post and this often accounts for a lot of our clutter. In our house we manage to make piles of all incoming stuff which then gets moved and clutters somewhere else ready for the next incoming lot. Then wonder why we can’t find anything! Buy an in-tray or create a spot in your home where papers are always placed and can be sorted through to eliminate as much as possible. Anything that needs keeping should then be filed and stored safely. Create files so things can be easily found too.
2. Make a starting area
Clear your first area, this will be classed as your no-clutter zone. It might be a table top, kitchen counter or hallway. The rule is once the zone is cleared nothing can be placed there unless it’s in use. Everything must be put away. The idea now is that each day you expand the area and make sure the house is key clear of all clutter and everything has a place.
3. Each day clear another work top
Get your house to a stage where all flat surfaces are cleared or styled. Clear off everything possible leaving only essential items.
4. Now that all your flat surfaced are clear, pick a shelf
It doesn’t matter which one the main thing is that all non-essentials are cleared leaving it neat and clutter free. his can be done a shelf or cupboard at a time until you’ve completed a room.
5. Make a weekend of it
Maybe you don’t feel like starting right now so get a date in the diary to really go to town. Schedule a decluttering weekend, invite family to help and clear as much clutter as possible. Get boxes and bags ready and make a trip to the charity shop and make good use of the things you no longer have a use for. You may not get the whole house cleared but you’ll be well on your way.
6. Pick 5 things that always end up lying around cluttering up the place
Think carefully about where they should be and make a home for them. This way they will always be put away when you’ve finished with them.
7. Visualise how you want your room to look
Spend a few minutes looking around the room you’re trying to declutter. Think about how you want it to look. What definitely should be in there? What are the essentials? What is in the room that has gravitated there but shot don’t be there? What is on the floor (tip: only furniture and rugs should be on the floor). What is on the flat surfaces? Once you have established all of these things you can discard everything that shouldn’t be there.
8. The ‘maybe’ or ‘just in case’ stuff
There’s always those things that you think your might need at some point but still never get round to using. Put these things in a ‘maybe’ box. Store it away and mark 6 months on your calendar. hen get the box out if you haven’t already and go back through and see what you can now get rid of. It may be that the whole box can simply go as you haven’t need it all this time.
9. Donate to charity
Once you’ve completed a room or once there is a decent pile of things you no longer need, box it up and take it to charity to clear the cluttered corner of your room.
10. Create a 30-day list
The problem with decluttering is that we finally get clear and then we buy more stuff. So fight that tendency by nipping it in the bud: don’t buy anything that you don’t really need or anything that once in the house does not have a use or purpose. Make a list so every time you want to buy something that’s not absolutely necessary put it on the list with the date it was added. You may then only buy things that have been on the list for 30 days. This way you may well lose the urge to buy the thing you didn’t really need and save yourself money and decluttering time in the process.
11. Get your kids involved
Teach your kids where things belong. Get your children in the habit of putting things away where they found them, this way your house is sure to stay decluttered for longer.
12. Set up some simple folders
Another way to beat the paper clutter is to create some simple folders with labels such as bills, to send, insurance, to keep. Put them all in the same place for when you need them this way you will find things easier and be far more organised.
13. Eliminate your clothes as you see them
When you’re getting ready in a morning and looking for something to wear pull out the things you haven’t worn in a couple of months. If you know you won’t wear them don’t keep them get rid on the spot. If they’re seasonal however store them in a box until they’re needed. Keep doing this until your drawers and wardrobes are only filled with your favourite things.
14. Clear out your medicine cabinet
If you don’t have one spot for medicines, create one. Go through everything and discard everything that is out of date or that is never used. You should also discard at anything that is beyond its best, simplifying it to the essentials.
15. Clear a drawer
Just take the drawer out and empty it on a table. Sort the contents into three piles: 1) stuff that belongs in the drawer; 2) stuff that belongs elsewhere; 3) stuff to get rid of. Wipe the drawer out, then put the stuff that belongs back neatly and orderly. Deal with the other piles immediately!
16. Love your new look
Once you have decluttered an area, you should take the time to look at it and enjoy it. Make the decluttered look your standard! learn to hate clutter and discard of anything sue to clutter your space before it begins.
Start your decluttering journey today you really won’t regret it and you’ll have loads more time to concentrate on the things you love most.
“We don’t need to increase our goods nearly as much as we need to scale down our wants. Not wanting something is as good as possessing it.” – Donald Horban