We all collect things over time, and over decades these treasures and trinkets can really pile up. Having too many things where they don’t belong can cause you stress and even make your living space unsafe.
There’s a lot you can do to declutter your home and keep it manageable. To help you live a more relaxed life with the things that matter to you and serve you well, follow these four simple steps for decluttering your home.
Set Goals and Make Plans
Set SMART goals so that you can achieve your overall mission to declutter. A SMART goal is “Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound.” Create a specific goal and think about how you will measure your accomplishment. Then, create a realistic timeline for success.
For example, if you want to declutter your kitchen, split the space into zones for you to work in. You can make the task as big or small as you want, so long as you keep it manageable. You might start with a countertop or a single drawer. Set a timer and try to remain focused on that area for the given amount of time.
Decide What To Do With the Stuff
As you go through your objects, categorize them based on whether you will keep them or get rid of them. Bring the categorized bins with you throughout the sorting process so that you are not wandering around the house during your set cleaning time.
- For items you will keep: Make sure the items you want are where they belong. If an item needs repair, set it aside so that you can fix it before putting it away.
- For items you decide to throw out: Recycle paper, plastic, or glass. Set aside trash to immediately throw away and remember to properly dispose of hazardous items like batteries.
- For non-trash items that you no longer need or want: Donate items you no longer want to an organization or person. Only donate usable items in good condition.
Optimize Your Storage Space
Often, rooms get cluttered because people aren’t making the most of their storage. This simple step for decluttering your home keeps necessary items hidden away but conveniently close.
When you optimize your storage space, the goal isn’t to make more room for more stuff. Whether you’re decluttering an attic or a single drawer, organize your belongings to make them easy to access and view. Use organizers such as shelves, containers, and mounts to give items their own designated spaces. Many organizing tools have wheels to keep items easy to move around.
Keep the Clutter Down Moving Forward
Before bringing an item into your home, think about its purpose and whether you have space for it. Periodically, sort through your items to keep the clutter down. By being mindful of the objects in your home, you can avoid becoming overwhelmed by the things you own and instead appreciate what you have.