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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Declutter Tips

By Scarlet

It is a great time of year to work on decluttering! Chances are after all the new holiday gifts find places in your home, there is a bunch of old stuff that you could part with to make more room.   

Here is the thing to remember when it comes to stuff – less really is more! If your kids have 100 games, not only is it more stuff for you and the child to have to constantly pick up, but it is also likely that they won't value any of the toys the way they would if they had less. If you open your drawer, and it is so packed with stuff that you don't wear so you can't find the stuff you do wear, you should realize that less is more.

Plus, when I declutter, I always imagine how happy I will make the people who will find these new treasures after they are donated to Goodwill or sold at a garage sale. One person's junk really can be another's treasure and it always makes me give more when I know it will be reused by someone who needs it.

Declutter Tips:

1.    Declutter by room. Choosing one room at a time gives you a manageable goal so that you don't get lost in what you have and haven't done.

2.    Start with what is most visible in the room. What is most visible will have the most impact when you declutter and give you a sense of getting something done. For example, is there stuff all over the floor? Do you really need any of it or can you load it into a bag to be given away? Is there too much furniture?  Too many books to fit inside the book shelves? Once big obvious things are out of the way you can move into the hidden but often cluttered areas.

3.    Next, open the drawers and cabinets and see what can go. If you haven't used it or worn it in a year, then you can likely give it to someone else who will and get some space back! It may look like you have 10 pairs of jeans but when you give away the 8 that don't fit, you will be able to move stuff around and actually know what you do need.

4.    Last, work on the closet. The closet can sometimes be like a whole new room that needs decluttering. Again break it down by area. Go through the shelved space and the stuff sitting on the ground. How many pairs of shoes do you really need? Then go through the hanging stuff and use the one year rule again.

5.    Pat yourself on the back. You deserve a high five for cleaning out all of that stuff you didn't need, creating more room in your house, and giving (or selling) that stuff to a place where people that do need it can get it!

If you have kids, don't forget to have them help you with at least part of the process so they can learn that giving things they don't use to others that need them is an important and desirable thing to do.

Do you have any declutter tips you would like to share? I would love to hear them!

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