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The Art of Decluttering: A Beginners Guide

March 5, 2024

The Art of Decluttering: A Beginners Guide

Why Decluttering is Important

Decluttering your home can feel like an overwhelming task, but it is one of the most beneficial things you can do. As a beginner looking to declutter, there are some key reasons why decluttering is so important:

  • Creates a calming environment: Clutter can make spaces feel chaotic and stressful. Decluttering helps create a calming, peaceful environment that feels open and relaxing. This can lower stress levels and improve your overall wellbeing.

  • Makes cleaning easier: When there is less clutter, cleaning becomes much easier and faster. You won’t have to work around piles of stuff or scrub layers of dust. Maintaining a tidy home is much simpler.

  • Saves money: Getting rid of unused items clears up space and prevents you from making unnecessary purchases. You also won’t spend money storing and maintaining things you don’t need.

  • Improves organization: Decluttering forces you to categorize belongings, optimize storage, and create systems for managing possessions. This makes it easier to find things when you need them.

  • Provides mental clarity: Having an excessive amount of stuff creates distraction and makes it hard to focus. Decluttering can lift that mental fog.

How to Get Started with Decluttering

The process of decluttering and organizing an entire home can seem overwhelming. Here are some beginner tips for tackling it step-by-step:

Set aside short bursts of time

Don’t try to declutter your whole home in one massive effort. Dedicate 30-60 minutes at a time to work on one area. Short bursts are more manageable and help you focus.

Start with less stressful areas first

Build momentum by beginning with the easiest areas like the office closet or guest room. As you progress, take on more major zones like the basement or garage.

Declutter room-by-room

Moving systematically from one room to the next keeps the process simple. Finish decluttering one room before moving onto the next.

Sort items into categories

As you declutter a space, sort items into keep, donate/sell, trash piles. This makes it easier to process what you’re eliminating.

Store items near where they’ll be used

Put items back in their designated spots in the same room they’ll actually be used. This prevents clutter from collecting in random areas.

Best Practices for Decluttering

Follow these habits as you work through decluttering your home:

  • If you haven’t used it in over a year, you probably don’t need it. Get rid of anything you don’t use.
  • One in, one out. If you bring something new into your home, get rid of something else. This prevents clutter from accumulating.
  • Store items out of sight. Use baskets, bins, and organizers to neatly contain possessions. Hidden storage helps keep rooms feeling open.
  • Only keep possessions you truly love or enjoy. If it doesn’t bring you happiness, let it go.
  • Avoid storing items for someday scenarios. Get rid of clothes that don’t fit with the hopes you’ll slim down or hobby supplies for a hobby you never do. Live for now, not someday.

Tackling Problem Clutter Zones

Some areas like the kitchen and closets tend to collect clutter easily. Use these tips to conquer them:

Kitchen

  • Clear countertops except for essential appliances. Store everything else in cabinets, drawers, or the pantry.
  • Purge pantry items you never eat and group like items together in organizers.
  • Declutter cabinets and drawers. Remove odd containers and gadgets you never use.

Closets

  • Donate clothes you haven’t worn in over a year. Be merciless.
  • Only keep clothes that fit your current body and lifestyle. Let goal pieces go.
  • Utilize vertical space with hangers, shelves, and shoe organizers.
  • Get rid of plastic hangers and replace with matching wood or velvet ones.

Maintaining a Decluttered Space

Congratulations, you’ve decluttered! Now it’s time to implement habits to maintain your organized space:

  • Do regular “purges” where you look for any new clutter. Aim to do this weekly or monthly.
  • Process mail and paperwork as soon as they come in. Don’t let papers pile up.
  • Put things back in their designated homes after using them. Don’t just set them down.
  • Store items out of sight in closets, cabinets, and drawers. Hidden storage prevents clutter.
  • If something is broken or you don’t love it, get rid of it.

Decluttering your home takes dedication, but it’s worth it. Follow the beginner tips outlined above to tackle it step-by-step. Soon you’ll be living in a clean, clutter-free oasis.

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