Clutter attracts clutter and space attracts space. Finding balance between the two extremes is no easy task, but with patience and perseverance your home can be tidy, clean and ready for surprise guests every day of the year.
Before you start the process of decluttering and throwing things away left and right, it is beneficial to understand why things get accumulated in the first place.
Modern society promotes consumerism by selling single-use products, and by coming up with something new every hour of every day. We often buy things, not because we need to, but perhaps because we are unhappy about something in our lives – a rough day at work, not enough money, health problems, etc. We buy things to fit in, to not feel left behind and, truth be told, to fight boredom. We buy things anew because they break and we must replace them. Buying for the sake of shopping and having something to do, is a crutch that is all too easy to lean on.
Once you know why clutter keeps accumulating on every shelf and in every corner, then you can move onto the how to get rid of it.
Start with these 6 easy steps to help you declutter your home room by room.
1. Make an appointment with your cluttered room, write it down in your planner and stick to it. It is infinitely easier at the end of a long day to sit down and relax, but that will never take care of clutter that grows by the week’s end. At the same time, allot yourself a certain amount of minutes to spend decluttering any room. 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 2 hours. It depends on the size of room and amount of clutter. Whatever you do, do not make excuses and put the work off for later, there will only be more mess by the time you get around to it.
2. Create a vision for the room. If you were to start with a blank slate and gradually put back your essentials (furniture, art, rugs, etc.) where would you organize everything else that did not fit in the picture? Would it be stored in another closet, in another room, or would you be willing to get rid of entirely?
3. Organize and sort your belongings. If it helps to analyse your items one by one, then take your time and declutter slowly. If you find that something would belong better to another area of your home, take it there immediately. If there is obvious garbage or junk mail piling up, then toss it without a second glance. While you are organizing the items in any room, always make the conscious and final decision to keep, trash, recycle or donate in mind.
4. Get rid of unneeded, unwanted and unused items responsibly. Sell what has value, donate what still works and dispose of everything else in the landfill. When you keep only what you need and use, you will find that there is little left that you need to care of and ultimately you will have time for other meaningful things in life. The goal is to own just enough to make you happy and content, rather than being busy managing it all.
5. Make sure that everything has a set spot in your home. Shoes in the hallway or closet, blankets in the linen closet, clothes hung up or folded and put away. The most important lesson in creating order in your home is to understand that everything you own provides value, so you need to treat it all with respect. Piles of clothes and toys do not show appreciation to the items or the materials from which they are made. Everything we own comes with an environmental impact, so, the idea of owning less, really is about having more, plus it benefits the future.
6. Develop a cleaning routine. If you have a cleaning routine for each room or area of your house, then you will always have a concept of the ideal amount of stuff that fits comfortably in your home. It helps to prevent you feeling overwhelmed with the amount of housework by spreading the chores out over the week, rather than having to tackle an entire house all at once. When you develop an easy-to-repeat cleaning process, it will not only save you time and money, it will save you the stress of not finding what you are looking for, time and time again.
The less clutter you own, the easier it is to stay organized.
Develop healthy cleaning and buying habits and an uncluttered home is yours forever!