Thursday, April 10, 2014

Five Relatively Painless Ways To Declutter

Having trouble getting started with decluttering and getting rid of stuff you know longer use? These five ways are a good place to start and depending on your attachment level, pretty painless!

  1. Trash. Look around your home. Find anything that is obviously trash and throw it away. Newspapers, receipts you no longer need, junk mail, broken items. 
  2. Magazines. I know we love our magazines but really, how many do we need to keep? A good rule of thumb is to keep 2 or 3 of the latest issue of each magazine to which you are subscribed. If you haven't had a chance to read a magazine that you've had 6 months or more, you probably won't. Most articles are available online now but you can also tear out something you want to keep, file it and toss the magazine. If way more magazines are coming in than are being read, it may be time to rethink your subscriptions and stop the flow!
  3. Plastic containers. How many of the sour cream and yogurt containers am I actually going to use? It's ok to keep a few--I keep some to send leftovers home with friends--but be realistic. Toss the extras into the recycling bin and enjoy the extra cabinet space.
  4. Partially empty personal care products. Is your shower full of partially empty bottles and your bathroom counter cluttered with all sorts of stuff that is rarely used? It's time to bite the bullet and toss, toss, toss! If it makes you feel better, commit to using some of this up before opening new bottles, but do it quickly before you lose your resolve. Have a bunch of free samples? Purge those too! Not only will your bathroom look so much nicer without all the bottles and clutter, it will be so much faster to clean. Win, win!
  5. Clothing and accessories. For some this may be more difficult but it can be easy if you simply get rid of the items you haven't worn in a long time. When the seasons are changing is a great time to tackle your closet since you are changing out your clothes anyways! Are there items hanging in your closet that you haven't worn all winter? Weed them out! No need to store something you aren't wearing! The exception is dressy or formal wear that you may only wear a few times over the course of several years. I have a nice dress that I wear to weddings and other dressy occasions. Even though I use it once a year or less, I still keep it! Just make sure what you are keeping actually fits and is a piece you really will wear.
A donation box set in the closet for easy decluttering as I switch out my wardrobe for the summer. 

What are your best decluttering tips?

1 comment:

Lillibeth said...

Good tips, Mary Ann. They really do make a difference. I recently cleaned out the bathroom shelves-- got rid of all the expired items, half- or less- filled bags and boxes of things like bandages or cotton balls or toothbrushes (I buy multi-packs) that could be put in a smaller container and the bag or box thrown away. It looks a lot nicer.