It’s no secret that the less clutter we have around our home, the less of it we have in our minds. It’s why the idea of living a more minimalist lifestyle and junk removal seems so appealing in theory. Unfortunately, we don’t always know where to start and instead put it off, ending up with even more clutter over time.
Decluttering tips to follow
If you happen to be in this situation, we have some good news for you: you can do it! And it can be done if you can follow these five easy decluttering tips.
Most times, it’s challenging to figure out what to do with a particular item that can get you stumped despite your intention to reduce clutter. To avoid this, simplify the decision process using the 4-box method.
- Box 1: Keep. These are the items you need for your daily life.
- Box 2: Get rid of. These are items you don’t want to keep.
- Box 3: Donate. What you don’t need any longer but may be helpful to someone else.
- Box 4: Relocate. Items with sentimental value or possible future use.
Most of the decisions you make in this step will depend on your vision and what you need in your life. Decluttering involves a critical look at the value of what you own in your life. Junk removal of stuff you don’t need can help you focus on the things that matter.
Visualizing a clean and organized space is the most important step to decluttering but often the most difficult. We tend to imagine what we want based on what we have seen on TV or social media. Here’s a newsflash for you; there’s a reason you call it your home, and it’s because it should reflect your personality and senses. Besides, your home will never look like the one you saw on Pinterest because it will likely have different materials, colors, etc.
Instead of attempting to copy someone else’s home, think about what you want to achieve from your decluttering project. Research by psychologists at Princeton University and the University of California, Los Angeles, found that clutter can have various detrimental effects on our psyche. Among the consequences include a reduced ability to focus, increased cortisol, and even difficulty sleeping.
Knowing this, start by imagining all the benefits you can gain from decluttering. Because not only will this get you in the right mindset, it will also motivate you to get started. Just remember to keep your vision realistic based on your needs without comparing yourself to anyone else.
All the most successful people became so because they set clear goals for their lives. Like a ship-setting sailor an airplane taking off from the runway, you can’t start a project without knowing your roadmap. Setting a timeline for yourself to follow is effective because it helps you focus on specific targets. This helps make sure you don’t get overwhelmed by the entire project.
One way to do this is by dividing your home into different rooms because the idea of decluttering your entire house at once is probably going to sound impossible. Then grade each room by the priority level, say, within a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being the most cluttered room). Finally, create a timeline for when you intend to complete each room’s decluttering.
We usually recommend starting with the least decluttered room because of the psychological rewards. With every completed task, your brain receives a shot of dopamine, motivating you to keep going. By starting with an accessible room’s decluttering, you should be encouraged to keep going even toward the most cluttered rooms in your home.
Sometimes we get the best advice from our friends and family because they may be less biased with our possessions. So if you ever feel like you can’t make a decision, get help from a trusted friend willing to dish out honest opinions.
Your friends can help you make objective decisions. And it’s also an excellent way to get rid of big items you couldn’t get rid of yourself just because it seemed like a hassle. Plus, it can be a fun activity, or you can even make a game out of it.
After you’re done decluttering, it won’t hurt to pat yourself on the back just a little. A simple skill to do this is by revisiting your home afterward and taking in the new surroundings. Take a few pictures to see your progress and follow up by making a point of only introducing the things you need into your home. In doing so, you avoid creating more clutter in the future and starting all over again.
Decluttering doesn’t happen in a day, and it takes the will and proper planning to kick start the process. But at the end of the day, you can do it, and you’ll have the home that you have always wanted.