Four Easy Strategies for De-Cluttering Your Home


Tidying Up the Mess in Your Home

If you are looking to minimize the mess in your home, you need to adopt a new philosophy. Everything in your house should have a home. Your belongings need a designated place to rest when they are not in use. This includes mail, keys, hangers, blankets, dishes, shoes, backpacks, dirty laundry, toothbrushes, and dog accessories—absolutely everything needs a home.

1.  Slow and Steady

Break your home into sections and de-clutter one room at a time. Start with the front door, the land of stray shoes, jackets and old mail. Create a home for everything. Buy a basket for the shoes, create a tray for the mail and make a cool coat rack.

Move through your house tackling little projects at a time. You can organize the pantry on Tuesday night when the kids are at dance. On Saturday you can de-clutter the pool toys in the backyard as they are playing. During Sunday night football, clean out your husband’s closet (he’ll never even notice).

Don’t set the expectation that you will completely de-clutter your home in one weekend, or even one season. It is an ongoing process that is never complete. There is always something that could be more organized.

2.  Establish a Donate Box

Clutter usually ends up in one of two boxes: trash or donate. You have a designated place for the trash in your home, and you should have a designated place for the things you wish to donate. One you establish a donate box, it will be easy to add to it regularly.

3.  The Box Game

Perhaps the most difficult part of de-cluttering is forcing yourself to decide whether you need a particular item or not. Assuming it has no sentimental value, play a game to determine how important things are to your daily routine. It may help you decide between donating an item and hanging it back in the closet.

Place every item (clothing, shoes, and accessories) you think you will no longer use in a box. Don’t worry, you are not throwing these items away or donating them (yet). If you think you will never use it again, but just can’t let go, put it in this box.

When the box is full, pack it up and put it somewhere in your home out of sight. Consider everything in the box gone. Those items no longer belong to you.

Time will tell if you need something in the box. Over the next few weeks, if you find yourself needing something out of the box, go retrieve it. Obviously, it is something that you are still using in your daily routine.

A month or two later you can donate or dispose of the contents in the box. Whatever is left is not important to your daily routine and you can successfully let go and move on. Although this strategy works best for clothing and accessories, you can use it with any item in your home. Kitchen accessories, movies and children’s toys are all good victims for the box game.

4.  A Daily Dose

If your goal is to de-clutter and stay organized, you have to work at it every day. A lot of strategies for quick bursts of cleaning exist to help to maintain organization.

  • 12-12-12-Challenge – Throw away 12 things, return 12 things to their “home” and donate 12 things once a week.
  • Donate Daily – Choose one item a day and relocate it to your donate box. Be sure to drop the items off at least once a month.
  • Garbage Bag Lap – Grab a garbage bag and do a lap around the house. You will find more paper, trash and broken junk then you think.

Creating a habit of attending to the mess once a day will have a significant effect on your home’s overall cleanliness.

If you work to make organizing a habit, the idea of de-cluttering gradually becomes less overwhelming. A happy home is an organized home, so give yourself 15-minutes a day to tidy up the mess and kiss unnecessary clutter good-bye.

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