Ease Your Steps to Decluttering | 10 Best Tips!

There are 17,100,000 results on the keywords ‘decluttering tips’ on Google’s search engine today. This demonstrates to me many of us have the desire to lighten our loads. 

Do we have an emotional attachment to stuff?

I don’t have any attachment to, for example, a box of pasta or my refrigerator. Yes this is silly, just like a lot of the stuff we keep and are drowning in.

I have a 3 inch tall, red head, troll doll my father surprised me with when he sneaked into my very old VW and left this gift for me. How I smiled that day and everyday since when I see this little treasure. Keep in mind back in the day troll dolls were It! 

Am I emotionally attached to this troll doll? A loud and resounding yes is the answer! Will I declutter this. Of course not.

Why keep things that no longer serve us?

I live in a flood zone and learned long ago it is much easier to get dry junk to the dump than wet stuff. When I learned this lesson I decided I was getting rid of anything not useful to me and stuff that was no longer aesthetically pleasing to me.

Helping people declutter and get organized over the years has given me a birds eye view of the chaos some folks live in. If living with stuff handed down for a few generations is your jam then scroll past this writing. This is not for you. No judgement here. 

This article is for folks feeling tired of looking at all this stuff and don’t know how to move beyond their clutter.

What is your payoff?

Whether consciously or not everything we do has a payoff for us. Sometimes the payoff is positive and sometimes the payoff has a negative impact on us.  

Why do I keep my troll doll? The memory of this and my dad makes me smile. I love to feel happy. This is my payoff. Why do I choose to live a more minimal lifestyle? Because it hurts my head to see tons of stuff cluttering up a space. 

I find too much stuff to be a visual overload for me and very distracting. This is likely why I detest going into brick and mortar stores. Also having too much stuff would take way longer to keep my home and work places clean, tidy and organized.

pic of ocean with sand carved spelling out let it go

What is holding you back from starting to declutter?

To let go of things is much easier to say than to do. I believe this is at the heart of why many of us have lots of household items.

When you think about, touch or look at any given object how does it make you feel?

Do you have any idea why you still have it?

Does this object conjure up special memories of a past time?

Are you thinking other’s feelings will be hurt if you toss?

Does the item have a monetary value?

Is your payoff negative or positive for keeping this item?

Once you have done the work of figuring out your attachment to all your belongings you may find it easier to start the decluttering process. If you are anything like the others I have guided you will find your mental health and overall well being will vastly improve. My clients report feeling much lighter and freer.

10 best tips to get start! 

Set clear goals

What exactly is your decluttering goal? Whether it’s creating more space, reducing stress, or organizing your belongings, having clear goals will keep you motivated throughout the process. I suggest writing this goal down and revisiting your goal when you veer off track.

Sort and categorize

If you have a lot of clutter and want to make lasting progress the first thing to do is open 3 heavy duty black contractor’s trash bags. Label one trash bag ‘trash’ for unwanted items. Label the second trash bag the ‘donate’ bag and label the third trash bag ‘sell’. 

Sort items as you go and put each object into 1 of these 3 bags. The objects you decide to keep need to be put away where you have deemed they belong.

Determine if you really need an item in your current space. If it doesn’t fit into your life anymore, consider removing it. Local charity shops will love your donations!

Start small

If you are feeling overwhelmed my idea, that always proves to be a winner, is to pick up one object. The easiest way is to pick up the object closest to you or the item your eye falls on first. Decide what you will do with this item. Put the object in one of the 3 bags you have set up or put the item away. 

Keep decluttering this simple.

One-in-One-out rule

For every new item you bring into your home, remove one you no longer need. This rule helps prevent clutter from building up again. This is the best way to keep your home maintained after you have decluttered.

Take your time

Decluttering doesn’t have to happen overnight. Set aside regular intervals or dedicate a few minutes each day to work on it steadily. Consistent progress will yield better results and make the process less overwhelming. 

Someone I know is removing 5 objects a day whether or not she is tired, or the hour of the day. The day she buried a loved one she came home and decluttered 5 things. This is commitment.

Sentimental items

Do not start with your Sentimental items. A lot of times this is the biggest challenge because it can be tough to let go of sentimental items.. 

When dealing with these items, ask yourself if they truly bring joy or if they are just taking up space. Consider keeping only the most meaningful pieces.

Create a system

Organizational systems are necessary for your belongings to help you maintain a clutter-free space. Label boxes, use storage solutions, and keep similar items together for easy access and visibility.

Get support

Enlist the help of family members or friends. We have a private and safe Facebook community. Having someone to support and motivate you during the decluttering process can make it more enjoyable and efficient.

A win is a win! Celebrate!

Yeah you! Celebrate the good news! Acknowledge and celebrate your achievements along the way. Recognize the effort you put into decluttering and enjoy the benefits of a more organized and clutter-free living space.

Envision the outcome!

You have wanted to declutter for a long time. You now have a plan! Doing a good declutter job is your first step. Picture inner peace coming!

Stay positive 

Visualize what your new physical space will look like as you are making yourself a fresh start.. Think how easier life will be when your space is decluttered and organized. 

A place for everything and everything in its place! By putting everyday items in their proper places you will spend much less time looking for things and be less frustrated. 

No rush!

Keep all the benefits in mind as you are working your way through. There is no rush. Best thing to do is to go at your own pace. This can be a big project, a shelf in a walk-in closet, an entire house or a small room. Where you start is up to you. 

Still having trouble? Keep it simple! Pick up one object. Deciding what to do with 1 object a day will make you 365 objects lighter and freer in one years time!

pic of author

Marj Bates is a life long ridiculously organized declutterer and artist. Less is more are words Marj lives by in everything she does except collecting dogs. “Dogs are like potato chips! Can’t have just one.” says Marj. Marj wonders if growing up with a fanatically clean Jewish mom means her decluttering and organizational skills are in her blood.

For more Declutter Buzz & Freebies check out our safe and private Decluttering community on our Facebook page. We are a safe and private space of like minded folks tackling this all encompassing clutter thing once and for all. No shame allowed! We will have a few laughs too!

To see more articles like this, please like and follow me. Thank you!

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