We all need to organize our lives better and these 10 Quick Tips to Help You Declutter will help you to do just that. . .
1. 15 minutes.
Can’t imagine tackling a whole house, or even an entire room, at once? Take 15 minutes each day to work on decluttering. Who knows, after 15 minutes you may just keep going for a few more.
2. Don’t allow things into the house in the first place.
Switch to paperless billing for everything that you can. Sign up for Manilla, a free web based service that helps you better manage all of your household accounts, including financial, utilities, subscriptions + More (Papeless!). Also, you can Register on the Direct Marketing Association Website. For $1, your name and address will be removed from prospective mailing lists, which will end about 75% of junk mail within 90 days.
3. Get it UP!
Start on your bedroom. Pick everything up off the floor, off the dresser (unless it belongs there), off the closet floor, etc. Pile it all on your bed. Yes, you read that right. Throw it all on your bed! Why? Because you can’t climb into bed tonight until you get that mess taken care of.
4. Use boxes.
Get 4 boxes and label them “KEEP”, “DONATE”, “THROW AWAY” and “MAYBE”. Everything should fit into those four boxes. If not, create boxes that will work and create your own little system. Go through, room by room, and put everything in the boxes. When a box is full, deal with it. Meaning, when the donate box is full, bag that stuff up and put it in the van to donate it. When the keep box is full, start putting things where they belong.
5. One in, two out.
Whenever you bring in an item, you have to give away two other items. This will get your donation box full and will also keep your house from accumulating more clutter.
6. Enlist help.
Make cleaning up fun for your kids. Or, if all else fails, bribe them with something to get them to help you clean your room. Okay, so I’m kind of kidding on that one. It’s not good to get in a habit of bribing your kids. But, you can reward them. It’s all about the terminology, folks.
7. Envision it.
Creating a vision for the room you’re cleaning will help keep you motivated. Do you picture a new sofa in the living room? Well, you have to get it cleaned up before that can happen.
8. Try boxes, again.
If the other box system doesn’t work for you, try this one. Walk through each room with a box, searching for only one type of item. For example, if you want to clean up the living room then you need to walk through the entire house looking for all of the DVDs, VHS tapes, or whatever else goes in the living room. This can take a bit more time to complete, but is easier to break down into 10 minute increments.
9. Trash it.
Some things just need to be thrown away. If you can’t donate it, trash it. Walk through the house with a trash bag in hand and throw it all away the first time you see it. Don’t put it off until later – do it now!
10. If all else fails…
If all else fails, invite your mother-in-law (or someone else that would be just as critical of your home!) for dinner one week from today!