Everyone has a bit of junk around them, but most of us have more clutter than what we know what to do with. And although household clutter may seem harmless, it can tend to make us feel stressed and overwhelmed, and potentially lower productivity levels.
When you get rid of clutter, you’re essentially freeing your home (and mind!) of unnecessary junk, giving it a thorough cleansing. Decluttering and organizing also relieve stress and give a sense of accomplishment.
Key Design Philosophies With Decluttering As Paramount
Before we dive into how you can declutter your space, let’s highlight the key design philosophies from around the world that feature decluttering as paramount:
The philosophy of feng shui majorly focuses on simplicity. In fact, there is a deep connection between feng shui and minimalism. This connection owes to the feng shui belief that decluttering our personal space is one of the top prerequisites for moving ahead in life and finding peace.
Hygge is all about finding a balance between functionality and happiness. To achieve this, keeping the clutter out is a must. Hygge minimalism refers to being conscious of the items you bring into your home, so there’s nothing you don’t actually need.
Wabi Sabi, a Japanese philosophy, is a concept that celebrates being perfectly imperfect. You don’t need to have everything too organized and take away the feeling of ‘home’ — you can still declutter and create a peaceful space!
KonMari, an approach to decluttering, is inspired by minimalism. It involves simplifying your home by getting rid of everything you don’t truly love.
How To Declutter Your Home
Decluttering is not a one-day process; it is a lifestyle, a mindset. And once you get the hang of it, you’ll never want to let go!
What You Need
There’s not much you need for decluttering — five separate baskets (or cardboard boxes) will do the trick:
Recycle: for all the items (glass jars, paper, etc.) that can be recycled
Fix: for items that need repair before being put away
Keep away: for the items that you need but can be tucked out of sight
Donate: for the things you could imagine someone else needing
Trash: for junk that should immediately go to trash
Oh, and one very important prerequisite — a basket full of motivation!
Where To Start Decluttering
If your entire house is cluttered, you may struggle to tell where to begin from. This really depends on the amount of clutter you have. If your bedroom doesn’t need much decluttering, you can begin there, doing the entire room at once.
On the other hand, your kitchen and garage will need quite some effort for decluttering, so you may want to divide them into zones and begin with one zone (for example, the kitchen cabinets).
Decluttering The Bedroom
Decluttering your bedroom depends on how much clutter you have accumulated over the years, and can take you anywhere between an afternoon to an entire weekend. Here’s how to get things done around the bedroom:
- Start by making the bed.
- Declutter all the drawers. Add shelf paper to the drawers and repurpose shoe boxes or small containers as storage systems.
- Keep flat surfaces clear for the most part.
- Store seasonal clothing and items in storage bins/chests.
Decluttering The Bathroom
Decluttering the bathroom mainly focuses on purging items and organizing them. A quick step-by-step guide would be as follows:
- Pull everything out, emptying drawers, counters, and closets.
- Sort everything into piles: medicines, toiletries, makeup, towels, and cleaning supplies.
- Get rid of expired products and medications.
- Organize the items you need back into the drawers. You may use dividers and small boxes for better organization.
- Place the items that don’t have a home into the five bins.
Decluttering The Living Room
Your living room is one of the hardest spaces to keep clean on a daily basis, but it’s important to keep it tidy if you truly want to enjoy your time unwinding there.
- Start with side tables, bookcases, and consoles, and free up flat surfaces.
- Add more storage in the form of baskets and multifunctional furniture.
- Tie up and hide the cords and cables around your entertainment complex.
- Hang pictures and add floating shelves to display collectibles.
Decluttering The Kitchen
Kitchens can easily get messed up because it’s used for several tasks — cooking, eating, and gathering with loved ones. Here’s how you can get its clutter under control:
- Start from the pantry and upper cabinets, and then move towards the drawers and lower cabinets.
- Assess each item, placing useful ones back in their spots. You can relocate positions when necessary. For the items you haven’t touched in over a year, put them in one of your five decluttering bins.
- Finally, clear everything off countertops, only leaving behind items you use everyday.
How To Start Decluttering When Overwhelmed
If you’re surrounded by too much clutter, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. This may even keep you from beginning your declutter project. If you’re in the same boat, start by forming a timeline and setting goals.
- Sketch a map of your house and mark the “clutter hotspots”.
- Mark each space in the order you will be cleaning up, starting from less cluttered spaces. This helps attain a sense of achievement.
- Create a realistic timeline.
If you’re new to decluttering (and also overwhelmed by the task), you can begin by allocating 5 minutes a day. This helps build momentum initially; you can gradually increase the time period once you get the hang of it.
Decluttering your home is more than just throwing out the things you no longer need. It helps create a space where you can truly relax and revitalize. Getting rid of items that remind you of negative experiences helps nourish and rejuvenate your mind and soul, too!
So, get your bins and begin your grand decluttering project — even if it means beginning from just 5 minutes a day.