It’s that time of year again; time to make New Year’s resolutions. After reading this last sentence we all probably gave a long sigh and thought about the resolutions we didn’t keep for 2018. Usually, the lists we make are just too hard or we don’t properly plan for them. This year, make an achievable resolution to declutter your living space. Having a clutter-free home is a great resolution and can help keep you organized for the rest of the goals on your list. Here are some simple steps to get you there.
Take it one room at a time. Every project starts somewhere and when it comes to decluttering, take it slow. Most of us give up on projects because they are daunting. If you approach the decluttering process a bit at a time, you won’t give up on it entirely. Start by working on one room at a time and don’t rush. You don’t have to finish in one day or even one week. Simply work room by room until the job is complete.
Start with the obvious trash. The easiest way to begin decluttering is to first get rid of trash. Old magazines? Trash. Knick knacks from three years ago? Gone. The most stressful part of decluttering is figuring out what to keep and what to ditch.
Only keep what has value. Once the trash is gone, you now must decide what you want or need. The rest needs to leave. The easiest way to make this decision is to hold the object in your hand and ask yourself, “How do I feel about this object?” If you have a strong positive reaction, keep it. If not, get rid of it. And if this approach doesn’t work, set a quota for yourself. If your shelf only holds ten pictures, which ten mean the most to you?
Find a home for what matters. Once you have the room pared down to only the objects you want, put the items away. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “A place for everything and everything in its place.” If there isn’t room for it, do you really need it? Or if you can’t live without it, isn’t there something else you could part with?
Don’t clean until a room is clutter-free. Don’t confuse decluttering with cleaning. It is much easier to dust a shelf if there is less on it. Don’t start cleaning until the room hold the items you are keeping. This will not only make cleaning easier for you, but it will also make the decluttering process move more quickly. Do one job at a time.
Ring in the New Year with a decluttered home and one resolution checked off. Happy Holidays!