There is enough information on decluttering and organizing to fill an entire wing of a publication, and a fast internet search brings up billions of outcomes. But if it were as simple as picking up a book and after the author’s information, wouldn’t we all have perfectly organized, compact homes? Well, judging from my experience, and by the experiences of many readers that have chimed in with opinions on the subject, there is a lot more to culling clutter than tossing items in a bin. Our relationship with our home, and the things in it, is charged with emotion — it is not so simple to give up things when something as simple as a rusted tackle box or a worn picture can bring memories flooding back. In the past several months we have been exploring this topic, and a number of the best tips from our discussions are pulled together in this guide.
Beneath, locate eight ways to maneuver through your psychological and emotional roadblocks to operate through your clutter, from the interior.
1. Come to terms with whether you are naturally arranged or not. Shimmering magazine spreads featuring perfectly organized spaces with nary a stray paper or shoe from location could possibly be fun to look at, but they’re not right for everybody. The truth is, some folks are more prone to be neat and orderly, while some feel more comfortable with a great deal of stuff around. Instead of fighting against your character, learn from it and work with it.
Get the guide: Get Organized: Are You a Piler or a Filer?
Tamar Schechner/Nest Pretty Things Inc
2. Put things in perspective. The ideabook below, by Alison Hodgson, is an excellent place to begin any decluttering travel. Hodgson and her family lost their home and all of their possessions in a fire, and the lessons she has to discuss are priceless. If you’re thinking about where to start, or how you could ever possibly eliminate items you love, it’s a must-read.
Get the guide: Suggestions to Get With a New Minimalist Mentality
3. Face your fears. That is what stands between you and the clean and neat home you wish you’d: fear of creating a poor choice, fear of tossing something out and regretting it later or fear that a family member will make you feel guilty to get rid of something. We are all experts at inventing excuses for keeping things we really do not want anymore.
Confront your fears, and you may find it easier to give up possessions which are becoming a burden for you.
Get the guide: Decluttering: Don’t Let Fear Hold You Back
Siemasko + Verbridge
4. Tackle your upper problem area. What is the 1 thing in your home you find it tough to consider decluttering? Think about starting there. For some it may be novels (see below for a fantastic ideabook on decluttering the library); for many others, china or clothes. Find the something which would make the biggest impact if you were able to streamline this, and begin your job there. Use tip number three (face your fears) and dig in.
Get the guide: Not My Favorite Books! Pain-Free Ways to Reduce Your Library
5. Get and remainmotivated. Find your motivation by imagining what a clutter-free home would feel like. What would it enable you to do? Why do you want this? Keep your answers in mind while you get started decluttering. Once you’ve gotten the ball rolling, then prevent yourself from backsliding by creating a few important habits: for each new item you purchase, get rid of a similar item, and once you see something which must be cleaned, put away or returned, just do it.
Get the guide: Clutter Clearing 101
6. A special note for parents. Having kids in the home, as any parent will tell you, can ramp up the chaos in the most (previously) organized homes. Fortunately, as parents, we do have control over a fantastic deal of the things that moves our houses, including toys. For starters, knowing how many toys and games your child needs — an overabundance of playthings is less appreciated, tougher to clean up and more likely to receive wasted or broken. To acquire a crazy-cluttered family home back in shape takes some work; there is no doubt about that. But the habits you form to deal with the kid chaos will pay off in sanity in your home, and you’ll be passing those good habits along for your kids.
Get the guide: Stop the Toy Takeover by Changing the Way You Think
Tom Stringer Design Partners
7. Get help if you need it. If you’re still feeling overwhelmed or if the job seems too big to undertake alone, you can get help! Telephone a really organized buddy and bribe him or her free food in exchange for decluttering physical or advice help. Or call in a professional. Professional organizers have observed it all, will be able to help you sort out the very cluttered space, and can teach you systems which will assist in preventing your overstuffing your home in the future.
Get the guide: The way to Use a Professional Organizer
8. Take it to another level: Simplify your daily life. Once you’ve been working on paring down for a while and are feeling good about the progress you’ve made, consider taking things a step farther. Downsize to a smaller, easier-to-maintain space, go paperless or challenge yourself to eliminate items you do not use.
Get the guide: Surprising Ways to Pare Down at Home