In this post, you'll learn ...
- How to assess your unneeded items
- How to pack your items
- When and how to get rid of unneeded items
- Best practices for decluttering any room in a home
Feeling overwhelmed with too much “stuff” is emotionally and physically draining. Clutter takes up space and can make you feel claustrophobic and anxious. Plus, a room that is bursting at the seams with clutter is unattractive no matter how nice your decor might be. De-cluttering can have a freeing and positive impact on your life. You literally have room to breathe, are surrounded only with things you truly love, and feel like you are able to enjoy your space. Getting rid of clutter is the first step toward a more balanced life.
Here is an efficient strategy to help clear any room of clutter:
Start by clearing a work space. In a bedroom this could be your bed or a coffee table in the living room. You will need garbage bags and a few empty boxes or bins, depending on how much “stuff” you plan to get rid of. The most efficient method is to start on one side of the room and work around to the other. First, start with items that are piled on the floor or out in the open, then move to items on shelves, in drawers, cabinets, closets, etc. As you work, quickly assess each item asking yourself, “Do I use this, need this or love this?”
If it is clothing, take into consideration if it still fits in size and style. Anything that you still use, need or love should go in one pile. Everything else either goes into a box or bag to be donated or sold if still in good condition, or thrown away.
For most people, the hardest thing to assess is “need.” One rule of thumb is to determine whether you have used a given item in the last year. If you haven’t used it and it’s been tucked away in a closet or drawer, you may not “need” it. If an item has value but it no longer fits your lifestyle, you can give it away, donate it, or place it in a box labeled “garage sale” to be sold later.
It is important to create a schedule, or a set date for garage sales and donating items. Sometimes, people will have good intentions of getting rid of these things, but indefinitely hold on to boxed items. Give yourself a reasonable time frame for these activities and stick to it.
Once everything is separated and the items are boxed, move them out to a garage or storage shed until you have your sale. If you are donating them, put them right in your car so that they can go to the donation center the next time you are out. The next step is to go back to the items you will keep and neatly organize or display them. If kept items need to go to another room, put them away immediately.
Getting one room done can be very inspirational and motivating, making you want to do more. Sometimes though, it is best to do one room at a time and wait for the next; this will help you internalize the change and will leave no room for regret.
Tell us, what is your best method for keeping your space clutter-free? Have you found a specific storage solution, or do you regularly donate your unneeded items?
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