It’s so easy for clutter and mess to build up in the home. We all start out with great intentions but life takes over, we get busy and suddenly “stuff” fills every nook and cranny with mountains of clothes waiting to be sorted and toys scattered everywhere.
If you’re sick of the clutter, don’t worry! I’ve got 10 great tips, including expert advice from professional blogger Katrina Springer of The Organised Housewife, to help you through the process of re-organising your home.
As the popular blogger says, “sorting through your clutter has its benefits…less to clean, less to organise and less stress for you.” Who doesn’t want that?
Follow these tips and you’ll find yourself more relaxed in no time.
1. Work out which space needs the new face
Maybe you just have one area you want to organise such as your wardrobe or perhaps you feel like your whole house needs an overhaul. Whatever the case, it’s best to keep it simple. Katrina advises to start in the area you want decluttered the most. This can be as large as an entire room, or as small as just a corner.
Once you know which space you want to tackle first, pause for a moment and develop a vision of how you actually want that spot to look.
2. Sort it out pile style
The first thing to do when going through your clutter is to pull everything out and start from there. When Katrina tackled her office space she removed all the paper and junk off the desk, spread it out on the floor and started collating the paper into piles according to filing, relocation or recycling.
3. Name and shame techno junk
Next up is sorting your items and considering their worthiness — if it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to, it’s not worth keeping. Ask yourself, does the toy still work? Does the old laptop still work? Go through your draws and remove all the previously upgraded mobile phones and the tangled mess of chargers. Defunct technology should be recycled, you can find an e-waste drop-off location here.
4. If it ain’t broke you can still get rid of it
Perhaps that electric train set in the home office or the extra blender sitting in the kitchen cupboard are just occupying physical and mental space. 1 word. Gumtree. My rule of thumb is that if someone else can get 75% more utility from something than you do, sell or donate. Less really is more.
5. Assess whether it’s right for the space
Next, you want to consider if the items you are coming across are suitable for the vision you have for that space. Maybe the kids are too old for certain toys or the item no longer suits your home décor. Be ruthless. If it doesn’t fit, move it to where it does. Or get rid of it! [Click to Tweet]
6. Avoiding a hoarding future
Another important question to ask is, do I have too much of a certain product? Ask yourself this when clearing out bedroom cupboards, bathroom cabinets and the kitchen pantry. Answering yes means getting rid of the products you no longer use, will never use or are past their shelf life.
7. Put it in its home zone
Okay, now you should have at least two piles, one for keeping and one for throwing out. To re-organise the items you are keeping create a designated space for them. If, for example, you’re tidying up the kids’ space, Katrina says “make sure all their items have a home or area they belong. Create designated play zones for the kids and teach them from a young age once to put everything away once they have finished playing .”
8. Toss it with purpose
Now you need to decide what you are going to do with the items you want to get rid of. That could mean you donate, sell, give away or hand down items.
9. All sorted? Check your work
Once everything has been put in their new spots and the leftover items have been moved out, it’s a good idea to stop and look around the space to see if it is set up how you want it to be. Is it functional? Can everyone use the space comfortably?
10. Prevent buildup with a clutter fighting plan
Now that you’ve done all the hard work the last thing you want to do is fall back into the habits that created the clutter. It’s worth thinking of some ways to stay organised and develop systems that get everyone involved. Examples include ensuring all shoes are left in a box at the door, toys are put away before dinner and make-up now lives in baskets under the sink.
As Katrina says “having a routine may be repetitive, but it will make your home life easier and family happier in the end.”
It takes a little work in the beginning but ruthless decluttering has its rewards. You might even find the gold earring you lost last year or the stash of cash your partner keeps at the back of the closet!
I’d love to hear your decluttering tips so leave your tips in the comments below.
Our April blog theme is Simplify. So look out for our other articles in this series for practical tips on simplifying your life like how to simplify your meal planning and find happiness in simplicity.
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