When you look at your home do you see piles of clothes on the floor, stacks of mail on the counter, and toys strewn all over the floor?
Messes make stresses.
It happens to all of us, whether you are a parent, have a home office, or have just a busy lifestyle. The truth is stuff we collect many things in life.
If your house is getting out of control, then it’s time to de-clutter.
Here are some tips to help you tackle the clutter and reclaim your space.
Start small with one room or even one space. This could be as big as the entire back room or as small as organizing your makeup drawer.
With each item ask yourself: “Keep, Toss, Store, Donate, Sell.” And make a separate pile for each.
- Keep Items: Ask yourself if you really need it; do you use it on a regular basis? Does it have emotional value? Have you used it in the past year?
You might be surprised how much you have that you don’t truly need. Sort these items into like piles such as clothes, shoes, belts etc. Find a way to containerize them; you can use simple plastic or cardboard boxes.
Plus if you shop online, stores like Amazon.com and The Container Store offer every kind of organizer, shelf, or container you can imagine. Clearly label all containers and find an accessible spot for them.
- Toss Items. Get a big garbage bag and be honest about what you need. Get rid of anything old, broken, empty, or expired.
If you are de-cluttering a major space you can call to get a waste removal service to haul it away. Many local cities will take larger pieces in the garbage on certain days. Check your city website to find out the rules for your site.
- Store Items. There are items you probably need, but don’t use frequently. These are items you can store. This can be everything from summer clothes to holiday decorations to fine china.
Containerize it and find a spot that is out of the way to store them. There may be a space in a closet, the back of a cabinet or under the bed that is out of the way, but easily accessible.
- File any papers. Creating a filing system with tabs can make it easy to find items quickly. This is a great way to organize bills, documents, coupons, restaurant menus, related project items and more.
- Donate Items. Always donate items when you can. You can drop items off at Good Will, Salvation Army and other thrift shops. Other items can be listed at Craigslist or Freecycle.com.
Plus, you can always post a picture of the item on Facebook and let friends know it’s FREE to anyone who needs it.
- Sell Items. Why not turn your unused items into cash? It’s so easy to make a little extra money selling your items such as by holding a garage sale. Another idea is to sell it online at Craigslist or Ebay.
Plus, many neighbourhoods are now offering Virtual Garage sale groups on Facebook. Just list the item and everyone in the group will hear about your offerings.
Here’s Further Organizing Tips:
- Go from Room to Room. De-cluttering one room at a time helps you stay focused and keeps the process from feeling overwhelming.
- Make De-cluttering Fun! Put on music and enjoy the process. Dance. Enlist the help of a friend. Consider offering yourself a reward like lunch with a friend for completing the project. Plus, having friends can help you decide if you truly need an item.
- Maintain your space. Once it’s organized, cleaning is so much easier. Everything has a designated place. Set aside a little time daily or weekly to sweep thru the house, gather any that has piled up, and to return it where it belongs.
Keeping your home tidy doesn’t have to be all your job. Tell your spouse or family members where things go and show them the systems you have created too. Everyone can work together to keep your home organized.
Call a professional. If your home is out of control and you want to organize your space, an interior designer or organizer is skilled at helping to determine your needs and creating systems to store your items neatly.
They can help you create your dream closet, tackle the toy room, design your dream home office and more. The result is a beautiful, organized home that you can sit back and relax in.