Even the Most Organized Need to De-clutter From Time to Time
March 17, 2019
Come January 1st and even into February and March everyone is talking about getting organized and de-cluttering. Me included. In my November 18 post I shared with ya’ll that de-cluttering is one of my New Year’s resolutions every year. I actually look forward to it. It makes you feel somehow lighter when you’ve gotten rid of unwanted items and put everything in its proper place.
I have found in the last couple of years that come January I have less and less to de-clutter and organize because I’ve been fairly successful at keeping up the process throughout the year. I’m not bragging. It has taken me many years to get to this point and I’m still far from perfect (check out my son’s closet if you want an example of imperfection!). So if you’re just starting your de-cluttering journey, I’d love to give you some tips that have helped me along the way.
Start out by making a plan. Have a good, hard look at your house (do you have old magazines, newspapers, and general clutter lying about?), closets and cupboards. Determine what areas need to be tackled and make a list (I’m a BIG believer in lists!). Then prioritize your list. To keep from getting overwhelmed, only focus and work on one room or closet/cabinet at a time. Completely finish that area, tick it off the list and then, and only then, move on to the next area.
Give yourself a de-cluttering project each week. Choose an item from your list and complete it. One week you may have a project that only takes a few minutes, another week it may take only a day. Then there may be projects that will take the entire week.
If you have a big de-cluttering job that is going to take more than a day, ensure that you give it at least 15 to 30 minutes a day. You don’t want to get burned out on all this organizing, but you don’t want to stall either. Just give it the amount of time that best suits your schedule.
One thing I’ve found to be really helpful is to have a partner in crime! Link up with a friend that is also wanting to de-clutter/organize and motivate each other. I have a dear friend back home and she is the queen of de-cluttering! Just talking to her about it kicks me into gear! Talk to each other about what you’ve managed to organize and what you’ve gotten rid of. This way you can encourage each other and share what’s working or not working for you.
While you’re in the process of organizing and de-cluttering separate your items into piles: things to keep, things to throw in the rubbish, things to give away, and things to sell. There are so, so many charities that would love your pre-loved items…Salvation Army, St. Vincent dePaul (this is an Australian organization), and other local charity shops. If you want to sell your items maybe have a garage sale, sell them at a consignment shop or on line. Facebook Marketplace is a great place to sell unwanted items.
Reward yourself! When you’ve ticked off some of those organizing projects from your list, treat yourself to a nice lunch (with your de-cluttering buddy) or have a day at the spa. Whatever you do, just don’t go shopping for more stuff!
Being organized and clutter free is an on-going process. It’s something you have to be mindful of and stay on top of every day. Each night before I go to bed, I make sure the kitchen and family room are tidied up and everything is put away. This makes the next morning more pleasurable and I don’t feel overwhelmed with clutter the minute I get up! Hopefully these tips will help you to have a more organized and clutter free life!
SIDE NOTE: The three areas I’ve shared with you in this post are areas that my entire family uses. So maybe I should add that TRAINING our family members to be need and tidy is a necessity to staying organized and clutter free!