Decluttering has become very fashionable in the last couple of years. For many of us our homes are bursting to the seams full of stuff that we really don't need need or want. The problem when you have so much stuff is it hard to know where to start. It can simply be too overwhelming.
There are number of methods that people use. Marie Kondo and her books on the Konmari method have sold over 1.5 million copies; although it does seem strange to bring another book into the house if you're trying to declutter! Some people are going for the 2016 things in 2016 method. This is quite ruthless and can lead to panic throwing out if you're not organised. So take a moment out to read today's 5 step guest post on decluttering your home.
“Too much clutter in your home is bad for your health: it can make you feel anxious and stressed, and might even be preventing you from relaxing. But the process of decluttering isn't an easy one, is it? For many of us, parting with items induces an unwelcome sense of angst and responsibility for making choices, prompting thoughts like: might I need this later? It's too precious. Will I regret throwing it out? However, there are ways of conquering the clutter…
Step 1: See it
Sometimes it can be difficult to see what's unnecessarily occupying our space. So, why not (hypothetically) invite your boss to your home office for a meeting? Suddenly, your space doesn't seem so ordered and professional, does it? Or, invite a friend with a toddler to visit: toddlers will find every piece of clutter below waist level. Alternatively, video your home and pretend you're placing the footage online: what does your room say about you right now? Are you proud or embarrassed?
Step 2: Emotionally detach from 'stuff' one item at a time
Emotionally detaching from objects in our homes – sentimental or not – is a long process and rarely achieved in one step. But you can make a start by repeating, 'the sky won’t fall in if I no longer own this', over and over again. Say it out loud if necessary. Every day, chuck out one item, donate it to charity or put it in storage using services like RSS. Then wait an hour or two. Has disaster struck? Has it had any tangible, negative impact on your afternoon? If not, learn from this lesson and do the same again tomorrow: bad things won't happen if you own one less sweater or one less book.
Step 3: Grab a recycling rubbish bag
Conquered the one item thing? Great – now pick up one empty rubbish bag and fill it. Junk mail? In the bin. Empty water bottles? In the bin. Leaflets and magazines you've already read? In the bin! Don't stop until you've filled up one entire bag, chucking out newspapers, moth eaten clothing, stained bedding and anything else that isn't suitable for donation.
Step 4: Make a list
Now you've started learning how to be more ruthless, write a list. This list needs to detail every area of your home which need de-cluttering, such as drawers, wardrobes and entire rooms. Have three piles: bin, charity and keep. Each item must go into one of these. If your gut instinct is telling you to get rid – don't hesitate! Start with the easiest area, but don't stop until it's done.
Step 5: Be prepared to maintain it
Don't think you're done once you've de-cluttered a space. It's great that you've conquered an area of your home, but be prepared to keep on top of this new way of living… you'll need to de-clutter again in a year or so, if not sooner. There is no auto-pilot; this kind of thinking requires long term commitment!”
Do you do a regular declutter of your home? What methods do you use?