To be successful in your endeavor to have a clutter-free home you’ll need a plan. Ask yourself what you want to accomplish. Is it to just tidy up the living room or to actually reduce the number of items you have?
Becoming a clutter-free home doesn’t mean moving items from the living room into the closet, it means deciding if the item stays or goes. If you never get rid of anything, you’re really just moving your clutter around your home.
Try the KonMari Method
The first step to enjoying a clutter-free home is getting rid of all the excess stuff you no longer have any use for. Yet, going room-by-room exhausts all of us. Often, it’s in the middle of the first room that we decide the task is bigger than we thought and say we’ll come back to it the next weekend (which turns into next year really quick). Instead of going room-by-room, try the KonMari Method that has you do it by categories, such as clothes, books, papers, etc.
You’ve probably read the book or seen the TV series on Netflix about pro-organizer Marie Kondo working her minimalist magic by sharing her process of tidying up your home category-by-category.
Her method has six basic rules which includes the famous question that determines whether an item stays or goes, “Does it bring you joy?” If the answer is yes, you can keep it. If the answer is no, you kindly thank it for serving its purpose and get rid of it.
To learn more about her method, visit Marie Kondo’s website. She even has her own way to properly fold your clothes!
Stay Within Your Means
Instead of dreaming about a bigger kitchen or a bigger closet, take a hard look at what you have. Do you really need all those serving utensils when you only throw a party around the holidays?
How many of your clothes do you wear before you decide laundry is a must? If it’s safe to say that you could probably go another week or two if you tried to wear everything before doing laundry, you may find that there are several items you can donate and cut down on the clutter, making some much-needed space.
Staying within your means doesn’t mean that you can’t get the coffee mug with a saying that fits your personality or the pants you need for work. You’ll just need to be mindful of the space you’re taking up with your new items.
Maybe there’s a coffee mug you no longer drink out of that you can donate. Your old work pants could easily be donated or if they aren’t nice anymore you can simply get rid of them in the trash.
For every new item you acquire it’s a good rule of thumb to pull something out. Sometimes you may add a few items before pulling things out to donate, but that’s okay!
Mail can be one of the biggest contributors to the clutter inside your home. The easiest way to stop the mounds of mail piled up on your table is to go paperless with all your bills. When you go paperless, you’ll begin to see that the majority of the mail you receive is complete junk. It can be shredded or recycled, bypassing your table altogether!
Give Everything a Place
When it comes to removing clutter from your home, it’s best to make sure that everything has its place. Don’t leave something out in the open just because you aren’t sure where it goes.
If giving everything within your home its place seems unrealistic, limit yourself to just one junk drawer that holds the miscellaneous items such as extra rubber bands, paper clips, etc. Organize your drawer to help you stay away from making it the “catch all” drawer.
Create a Habit
The best thing you can do is just get started. When you arrive home from work or school have a designated place for mail, keys, shoes, bags etc. After dinner, do the dishes instead of leaving them in the sink “to soak.” Set a timer for 10 minutes in the evening and see if the kids can pick up all their toys before it dings. Put dirty clothes in the hamper right away instead of leaving them on the floor. Focus on doing the little things one day at a time and they will become a habit.
Try and Try Again
Conquering clutter in your home looks different for each person. So, give yourself the grace to try different methods. Trial and error are the only ways you’ll know what works for you. There will be times when your home gets cluttered again. That’s when you forgive yourself when you fail at keeping the clutter at bay and become determined to clean up and keep on decluttering.
The journey to a clutter-free home can be a process, but the reward and peace that comes will be well worth it.