Whether you have a house that is bursting at the seams with clutter, or your house is fairly clean and organized, but you want to ensure you get rid of anything you have that’s just taking up space, here are 6 best home decluttering tips.
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Have you ever felt overwhelmed with clutter? I know I have. I can’t stand the feeling of being overwhelmed and out of control from a cluttered house, and that’s why I decided to take a stand and make a change in our home.
If you’re curious (or in a hurry):
THE CLUTTER HAD TO GO.
Are you ready to make a change in your home, too? There’s no better time to start than now.
6 BEST HOME DECLUTTERING TIPS
1. LOOK AT YOUR STUFF THROUGH THE EYES OF A STRANGER
I’ve mentioned this in some of my other decluttering posts, and there’s a good reason why I keep bringing it up.
Changing your perspective and looking at your belongings through the eyes of a stranger helps remove any sentiment you feel towards a specific item, and helps you see the object from a practical side of things and for exactly what it is – an object.
Of course, there will be some things that a stranger wouldn’t think you need to hold on to that you will hold on to because they have deep meaning to you, and that’s okay – as long as you don’t do that with everything you own. Just because an object has some kind of meaning to you doesn’t mean you need to hold on to it.
Setting a limit for the amount of sentimental items you allow yourself to hold on to is a good way to encourage yourself to really weed through the things you own and ask yourself if this is something you really need.
Do a walkthrough of each room and closet in your house and look at your stuff from an unbiased, unattached perspective. This isn’t easy to do, and if you’re struggling with it you could ask a close friend to come over and lend you a hand.
Have them walk through each room of your house with you, picking up items and asking you if you still need it, and why you do.
This might be one of the hardest things you do, but it is undoubtedly one of the most effective ways to declutter a house.
It took me far longer than it should have (I refused to accept that I needed help and was determined to do it all on my own), but when I was finally able to stop looking at all of our stuff as stuff that we NEEDED to hold on to and started looking at it all from an outsider’s perspective is when I was finally able to start effectively decluttering our house.
(Before doing this I would try to declutter but just end up wasting my time. I would go through every room of our house but get rid of nothing. Someway, somehow, I managed to come up with an excuse as to why we needed to keep everything we owned. Don’t be like me.)
2. START SMALL
Even after you’ve walked through your house and looked at your stuff through the eyes of a stranger, the thought of actually getting rid of everything you no longer need can still feel overwhelming, especially when you look around and realize how much stuff you have, and you don’t know where to start.
So you don’t waste time like I did, walking through the rooms of your house accomplishing nothing, and to help you eliminate the overwhelming feeling you get when you look at the clutter in your house, the best thing you can do is start with something small. I have found that the BEST thing you can do to start small (or start anywhere) is to use checklists to keep yourself accountable – these are my favorite decluttering checklists.
If you’re already feeling overwhelmed, starting to tackle the most cluttered room in your house is not a good idea.
When you do this you will likely end up feeling overwhelmed and defeated, since you won’t see fast progress. Instead, choose a room in your house that doesn’t have too much clutter. A room that you can confidently tackle and get decluttered within a day, or even a couple hours.
When you’re starting, the most important thing you can do is get yourself into the groove of decluttering. You shouldn’t be worried about getting the most cluttered room decluttered, right now. Rather, focus on just starting.
So go ahead, start somewhere small like a single desk drawer, your kitchen or bathroom counter, or the coffee table and start decluttering that specific area – don’t worry about ANY other rooms of your house right now, your focus should just be on what you’re working on.
Then, once you have finished decluttering that small thing you started with, pick another small thing, and work on that until it’s finished. Then move on to the next, and the next. Remember to take breaks in between and call it a day when you start to feel sluggish and when you can tell you’re starting to skim over items.
The most important thing to remember when you are decluttering your house is that you don’t have to do it all RIGHT NOW. You can start with something small and work at a pace that works for you.
3. JUST START
Okay, let’s be real here for a second.
There are a LOT of people who know their house is LONG overdue for a thorough decluttering, but they have been putting it off. Some people have convinced themselves it really isn’t THAT bad or they’ve come up with a handful of excuses as to why they can’t start decluttering right now.
Whatever the reason is that YOU may be using to put off decluttering, it’s time to ditch it. If you know your house needs to be decluttered, there’s no better time to start than now.
Dump all the reasons why you haven’t started yet and get rid of all your excuses, and just start.
Keep in mind that starting doesn’t mean you have to jump in and tackle the most cluttered area of your house until it’s perfectly organized. Starting can be as simple as organizing the junk drawer or clearing the paper clutter off of your desk.
The easiest way I have found to start is to take a small timer like this one and set it for five minutes, then spend that five minutes decluttering one specific area. Once the timer goes off, even if I haven’t finished what I’m working on, I will walk away from the area and take a small break. Then, I will set the timer for another five minutes and either finish up where I left off or start somewhere new.
This works the best for short decluttering stints.
It doesn’t matter how you start, it simply matters that you start.
4. ATTACK YOUR HOUSEHOLD CLUTTER IN BITE-SIZED PIECES
There’s a good chance that you’ll find a room or area of your house that is absolutely overflowing and bursting at the seams with clutter, and that is usually when you will start to get overwhelmed and discouraged and feel like decluttering your home is far too big of a task to manage.
When it comes to rooms like these in our house I like to split the room up into small sections.
Rather than looking at the room as a whole, I will look at the room in 5 – 10 small sections and tell myself that even if I only get one section decluttered and organized today, that is good enough.
When you declutter your room in sections it’s important to focus on the section you’re in and not move on to the next until your section is completely finished. Then, once that section is finished you can move on to another section, and so on.
5. REALIZE YOU DON’T NEED DUPLICATES FOR EVERYTHING
The one thing that makes up a big portion of common household clutter is duplicates of things you already have. I get it, our house used to be filled with all kinds of duplicates.
I wanted to hold on to duplicates so we always had backups of our items just in case something of ours broke. By keeping an extra coffee maker I felt confident that if the one we used ever broke, we wouldn’t have to go out and buy a new one – we would always have a backup on hand.
The problem with that is that we had to find somewhere to store our extra coffee maker while we waited for the day that ours stopped working. But, what if that day never came? What if our coffee maker worked great for years and years? Were we just going to continue to drag the extra coffee maker around with us each time we moved and find somewhere in our house to store it?
Yes. We were.
Or so I thought.
This was not a very smart way of going about things. By keeping duplicates of nearly everything we owned, we were accumulating a LOT of stuff, and that meant we had to find somewhere to store all this stuff, which meant our house was pretty cluttered and crowded.
Eventually, I realized it was a better idea to invest in a GOOD coffee maker that would last us years and years (this is like the one we have and LOVE), and get rid of the extra coffee maker.
The same goes for any duplicates you have. Even if you see a great deal on something that you already have, don’t buy it as a spare unless you KNOW that you are going to need it.
If it’s something that you want to buy just in case, then don’t get it.
If you’re wasting space by storing dozens and dozens of duplicates, it’s time to get rid of them and learn how to make do with what you have.
You could even make a few extra dollars by selling the duplicates you have.
If you’re worried about not having a spare item in case something of yours breaks, you’ll just have to get creative while you work on fixing whatever broke or until you can go out and buy a new one. There’s USUALLY a way around everything and anything, you just have to get creative with it.
6. CREATE A PLACE FOR ALL YOUR BELONGINGS
“A place for everything, and everything in its place.”
Everything you own should have a house in your home. They should all have somewhere they belong and can be stored nicely without looking cluttered or taking up too much space.
Doing this will help you declutter your home because once you get rid of everything you don’t need, you’ull finally have room for the things you DO need. (YAY!)
If you can’t find somewhere to store something you own, ask yourself if it’s really something you need. If it IS something you need to keep, then work on organizing your home with this free resource even more to create room for whatever it is you need to keep. If it isn’t something you really need, get rid of it.
If you haven’t figured out where something should go or you don’t seem to have space for it anywhere, there’s a good chance it’s time to kiss it goodbye. Again, if it is something you need to keep but you don’t have room for it in your house, I would suggest using something like this to create more space to store stuff in your home.
The only way you will be able to achieve the decluttered home your desire is to START.
It’s time to stop planning and dreaming about it – it’s time to start DOING.
If you’re overwhelmed by the decluttering process remember, you can (and you should) start slow and start small. You don’t need to get it all done today. You just need to start today.
Even if that means you spend only 5 minutes dedicated to decluttering your house today, it’s still a start.
Have you started decluttering your home? Which of these 6 best home decluttering tips is your favorite? Which of these 6 best home decluttering tips do you think you will struggle with the most?