Whether you’re planning to declutter your home in preparation for putting your house on the market, or simply to clear your mind or reduce stress, here are five easy steps to make the process more manageable.
- Set goals
The first step is simple, but important. By setting goals for decluttering your home, you will be able to prioritise your time and motivate yourself to reach your targets. You can also use this preparation time to get the whole family on board, and to decide on a sorting system so that you’re ready to hit the ground running.
- Start small and stick to categories
Start small and stick to categories such as clothes, books, toys, toiletries, cookware, etc, to make the huge task of decluttering your house feel more manageable. By zoning in on one category, or one small space within your home at a time, you will be far more effective than doing little bits of sorting here and there. Don’t forget to give attention to miscellaneous items such as paperwork, receipts, stationary, and unnecessary electronic supplies.
- Does it bring you joy?
Change the way you approach decluttering by looking for items to keep rather than looking for items to throw, as this will dramatically increase your effectiveness. As you are sorting through your belongings, ask yourself if each item brings you joy, keeping only those that do! This method of organising and decluttering, called the KonMari Method, is based on Japanese values whereby you should surround yourself only with things that spark joy.
- Throw, recycle, sell or donate
For anything that doesn’t bring you joy, decide whether to throw, recycle, sell, or donate. Deal with these items as soon as possible by taking them to the dump, recycle centre, car boot sale or charity shop.
- Maintain your clutter-free home
Finally, the most important step is to keep the clutter at bay and maintain a high level of organisation. For this you will need an array of storage, from boxes and shelf-dividers to under-bed containers. These should be well labelled so that you can quickly and easily find any item you’re looking for.
Schedule regular decluttering, but most importantly, be logical about acquiring new ‘stuff’ and set limits and boundaries to ensure you don’t continue to add clutter to your home! Good luck and enjoy your new clutter-free life!