Decluttering your home can be a tedious task, but it is one of those things that just needs to be done. Often, when you’re feeling stressed, anxious or just plain restless, your surroundings can help ease or worsen the situation.
The mere fact that you’ve stumbled across this article tells us that you want to spruce up your surroundings. Fret not, we’ve got you! Here is a simple guide to help you start the dreaded decluttering process, and a few tips and tricks on how to go about it!
Picture courtesy: Wonderlane
1. Take it one day at a time
Decluttering your home is not a simple task that can be done within minutes or hours. The longer you have neglected the task, the longer it will take you to sort it. If you qualify as a hoarder and live in a big home, it becomes even tougher. Even for a small house, it makes sense to spread the task over a few days. This way, you can declutter each area efficiently. Start with one room, or even a part of one room. Once you do this, you will eventually get the hang of decluttering and get to the other rooms. Make it a weekend chore with a fixed timing slot.
2. Focus on the Bs: Boxes & Bins
Every decluttering process must have at least 3 designated boxes to make the process easier and more organised. Before you start, make sure to pick up any 3 boxes or bins laying around in your house and designate them as Throw away/Recycle, Keep, and Donate. When you eventually start tidying up, think about what you would like to do with each item that you pick up and place it in each of the boxes. If you have a hard time bidding goodbye to some items and get stuck on what you would like to do with them, designate a “Maybe” box that you can revisit at the end of the day.
Before you start cleaning, sit down and visualize what you want the room to look like after the decluttering process is complete. Do you want to keep it minimalistic or add some colour to the room? In this step, you can also decide on whether or not you want to purchase a simple dresser for extra storage or take up a DIY project to make the area more functional!
4. Start with your bedroom
It could get hard to decide which room to start with. We recommend the bedroom. It is really the best place to begin. The first thing to do here would be to make the bed. Fluff up the pillows, even out the creases and fold the scattered about blankets. Tidy up your bedside table, and throw out anything you might not need; dried-out pens, old scraps of paper, or mail that no longer serve a purpose. Cleaning your bedroom first would fare well when you need a goodnight’s sleep after a day’s hard work!
5. Be rational
Purging your house of items is hard, and we can empathize! However, decluttering your home can also help declutter your mental space, and give way to a more healthy mental state. While decluttering, it can get incredibly easy to look at each item and feel the overwhelming desire to want to keep it.(You wanted that bag, it’s why you bought it in the first place!) But, keep in mind that you need to make smart decisions when it comes to tidying up. Maybe you bought that bag with your first ever salary five years back and it holds a sentimental value, but take a step back and ask yourself whether the bag can even be used? Is the bag’s zipper broken, or is it tearing slightly at the seams? If so, it is unlikely that you would be using it again and it may help to recycle and/or donate the bag.
While tidying up an area in your house, let’s say the kitchen and the pantry, you might find year old appliances that you had forgotten even existed! Just because you’ve found it again does not mean you need to keep it. Maybe you had to get it fixed but just forgot. Re-evaluate whether you would truly use it even after you get it repaired. If, in the back of your mind, you know you wouldn’t or you might not have a use for the appliance anymore, it would be best for you to give it away. Donate it to a charity that might need it or give it away to a friend you know would like it!
7. Marie-Kondo your way while cleaning your closets!
No matter how much you’d like to disagree, your closet is possibly one of the hardest areas to declutter! So many clothes and so many combinations to play around with!
However, this mindset only piles up clothes and adds to the clutter. Cleaning your closet is serious business and hopefully, these few tricks would make it easier:
- Lay out all your clothes on your bed and categorize them. You can either categorize them according to their purpose (for instance, casuals, formals, evening wear or ethnic, etc.) or you could categorise them as per the style of clothing (for instance, shirts, jeans, dresses, etc.)
- Pick up each item of clothing and evaluate whether wearing it makes you feel like yourself. Does it make you feel confident and feel good? If no, then place it in your “donate” box.
- Consider whether or not you need each piece of clothing. If you already own something similar, be it in the form of style or colour, then giving it away would be the smartest option.
Organizing your things are a great way of ensuring that clutter does not build up. This is why we recommend decluttering the entire area first, sorting items out in designated baskets, and then organizing the room systematically and rationally. For instance, you may always find newspapers piling up on your living room coffee table after every few days. Thus, once you declutter your living room, designate a space especially for old newspapers and be sure to keep the newspapers in its space once you’re done reading it! This would eventually become a daily practice, keeping your coffee table consistently clean and organized!
Now that we’ve given you a brief idea of what decluttering could be like, what are you waiting for?! Jot it down in your calendar, set a schedule and get started with your decluttering! We guarantee that the hard work would be worth it!
Pro tip: Play some songs and jam out to your favourite music to make the process a little more enjoyable!