“Minimalism is a repeated, daily choice to be intentional about what you allow into your life.” – http://www.simplyfiercely.com
So, you are ready to start decluttering your space. You are ready to start purging the things in your life that no longer serve you and make room for the things that do.
You have read the tips and tricks, you have binge watched Tidying Up on Netflix and you are feeling excited about transforming your home. You have your trash bags, your bins and you’re all set to go. You are pumped!
Then, you look around at your home and the clutter that surrounds you and instantly feel overwhelmed. Where is Marie Kondo when you need her?!
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Here’s the thing: decluttering can be so incredibly freeing and it can also be exhausting.
For some people, decluttering comes naturally. It is something they do on a regular basis and they are somehow able to maintain a clutter free home/life. For others, like myself, it is constantly a work in progress. Every few months, I do a deep dive into my home and my life and declutter.
But let me tell you, that first time I decluttered? Madness. Absolute madness. I was so overwhelmed and so excited at the same time. It was a ride.
And when I was done? I couldn’t stop walking in and out of every room and admiring the space. I felt lighter and I loved my home in a way I hadn’t in a very long time.
If you are like me, and find decluttering overwhelming but are ready to finally tackle the clutter in your home, look no further! I want to share with you a few simple ways to begin the decluttering process and not want to cry while doing it!
1. Just Start.
I know, I know. I am sure almost everyone who reads this is currently rolling their eyes and saying “duh Karen!”
But sometimes, when you are doing something new or are feeling stuck, the first step is the hardest. So what is the best thing to do? Just start.
Even if this means just picking up ONE thing and deciding to keep or get rid of it. And do you know what will happen? You will pick up another item and do the same thing. Once you start, it is easier to get into a rhythm and keep going!
2. Make A Plan.
Sit down with a piece of paper and make a plan. Maybe you will decide whether you want to declutter by room or by item category. Maybe you will pick what room is the more important to you or the one that will take the most work.
Whatever this looks like for you, making a plan will help you be successful in your decluttering mission and make you feel way less stressed or overwhelmed.
3. Set Goals.
What does your ideal home look like? At the end of this decluttering process, what do you want your space and your life to look like?
When I first decided that I wanted to declutter my home, I browsed Pinterest and different websites to get an idea of what my goals were for inside my home.
For me, my goals were to empty out my kitchen cabinets, closets and drawers. I wanted to look around and not see something on every surface or every wall. I also wanted to brighten up my home by redecorating with light furniture and light accents.
When you set goals, you will have a clear vision in your mind of what you want and what you are working toward!
4. Schedule Time.
Whether that be half an hour everyday or 4 hours every Saturday, decide what time you can devote to decluttering and schedule it into your day.
When we are busy and don’t set time aside for things that we want to do, they tend to fall by the wayside and never get accomplished. But, if you write it down on your calendar and schedule your day around that time, you are more likely to follow through.
5. Be Realistic.
Okay, I know it is easy to watch shows like Tidying Up or read other people’s blog posts and want to do what they are doing, in the same time frame as them. It is easy to compare your process to someone else’s.
But, this is a sure fire way that you will find yourself giving up or getting frustrated! You need to be realistic with your time and what your life is like. Even if it takes you two months to finish decluttering one closet, that is okay! Accept your process and your journey and don’t set unrealistic goals for yourself.
6. Begin With The Easiest Space.
If you have one room in your house that is filled with the most clutter or the most things, don’t start with that space. When you are feeling overwhelmed with the job in front of you, dip your toes into the decluttering pond by beginning with the easiest spot to finish.
For me, this was my junk drawer. The drawer was filled with a lot of odds and ends but it is a small drawer so I knew it wouldn’t take me forever to accomplish.
Pick one space that is easy and go for it!
7. Attack One Room Or Category At A Time.
Last but not least, one thing that worked for me when I was getting started was to tackle one room at a time. When I read the book “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up“, Marie Kondo’s method is to declutter by category and not by room.
For me, however, going room to room worked so much better! I found it a lot less overwhelming to tackle one room at a time. If you decide that you are going to work on your bedroom, then focus on that room before moving on to a different one. Don’t even think about emptying out the kitchen cabinet before that bedroom is done!
When you make the decision to declutter your home and your life, it is one of the most amazing experiences when it is done! The change it will make in your life is indescribable.