In my last post I looked into the side effects of clutter – stress, depression, distraction, guilt and all those other gems that we busy people love. I have moments of wondering whether I would be better off not having done the research because now I feel guilty that my clutter is making me frustrated. It’s a big circle of clutter caused guilt.
If you are like me and you are on a journey to decrease frustration and busyness in your life and make room for more joy, creativity and passion you should join me on the declutter mission. If you aren’t on the journey to joy, creativity and passion, I’m going to ask you – why not??
One of my biggest problems when I started decluttering was working out where to start. Mr Busy Bee and myself thought about buying a bigger house because we had “outgrown” this one. NO – we just had too much stuff. So we knew we had to get rid of stuff and we had to organise what was left – a place for everything and everything in its place, that sort of jazz. But where to start when you have lived in your house for almost ten years? We’ve lived here for two different lifetimes: before marriage and kids and after marriage and kids, so we have two life-times of “stuff” in our house.
So I have created a list of fabulous posts for you about beating the chaos in your house (yes – kids are chaos, but no – you can’t get rid of them).
Now before you get to stuck into this list of awesome posts, make sure you sign up here to get your list of ten declutter tasks that only take ten minutes. It’s an easy to start your declutter journey.
I’m going to be trying a lot of the tips below myself, so if you try any be sure to let me know. Let’s dig in!
This is a great place to start.
It’s al list of signs that you need to start decluttering. I can’t bear to turn my mind to how many of these apply to me. If you read my post about how I started decluttering and my recent one about the side effects of clutter there will be about 10 of these things that you know are, or have been, problems for me!
As I said before, we thought about buying a new house. We were lucky that the houses we wanted were out of our price range and it forced us to address the “stuff” side of things.
This post has lots of fun ideas on how to get started. Some of them could make great games with the kids, others only take 15 minutes – I like that because sometimes the idea of tackling big projects overwhelms me.
After reading this list I adapted one of these tips a little to make a fun game for my kids. Everyone in the house got a plastic bag (big ones for parent, small ones for kids) and a target of 5 items to throw out. There was a “prize” for the person who collected the most. Noone stopped at 5 – we filled up our big rubbish bin. Afterwards we all sat down together for a “special morning tea”. A surprisingly nice day morning considering we were throwing out pre-loved goods!
This post takes her 5 favourite ideas from the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo and breaks them down into nice bite sized tips.
There are some really interesting ideas in here. Overwhelming – and completely opposite to the tips I like in #2 above! — is the idea of doing the whole house in one go, rather than stage by stage. In my house, a lot of stuff seems to get moved from one room to another, so if I feel good about one room, I feel frustrated about another room. This idea would overcome that problem.
I’ve got a list of excuses piling into my head already. Let me share them:
-I’d have to take a week of work to do something like that
-my kids would go nuts if I took everything in their room until I finished sorting it
-it’s too hard
As I said, I get overwhelmed, so whilst I love the idea, I don’t think it will happen in my house.
Another option might be to do a room at a time, but instead of moving the things without a home to another room, to just put them in a box until their new home is created. If in a few months home they still don’t have a new home, I guess that would be a sign that there really is no place for those items in my home.
I’ve not read Marie Kondo’s book. It’s on the list, but I just haven’t gotten there. Has anyone read it? Are the tips from Small Stuff Counts the best ones? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
This one is more about HOW to store things rather than WHAT to store and it has some great tips.
Take a look at the linen cupboard before and after shots in this blog post. My linen cupboard is something I’ve been working on lately. I’ve gotten rid of a bunch of ratty old towels and hidden toys (I “transition” things out of the house so I don’t get busted), but it still needs a lot of work. I’m definitely still in the “before” category.
The one about stackable containers is really important. I have a terrible habit of buying only a couple of containers at a time and I can never find the same ones again. If you got multiples of the same containers they usually stack nicely in the cupboard.
Not sure what to get rid of? This is a great page for you. Ask yourself the questions on this page for each item that you’re unsure of. I know that I’m guilty of keeping things for some of these reasons. A big one that I’m guilty of is keeping things “just in case”.
I’m going to keep this list with me on my next purge to keep me on track.
I’m pretty sure I have every single one of these things!!
Cooking magazines are a big one for me. Why? I usually just look up the web anyway!
A couple of weeks ago I purged the bathroom cabinet. There were lipsticks in there that I would not be caught dead in. I got rid of 2 waste paper bins of old makeup, partly used shampoos, old gift baskets and all manner of scary things.
I’m including this one because it gave me hope that I can overcome being a messy person. Since I read this post a few weeks ago, I’ve been a lot more conscious about putting things away, Every night before, I sit down on the couch, I clean up the kitchen benches and put the toys back in the toy box. It only takes ten minutes (most nights!), but it’s making such a big difference! By doing those 10 minutes daily, the state of the house is a lot less overwhelming when I tackle the “proper cleaning” on the weekend.
Right. Is anyone still with me? Or have you all run away to follow the other blogs of people who have tidy houses?
I hope, like me, you found some ideas that really work for you from some of these blogs. I want to hear back about what works for you and what doesn’t.
Now – start your declutter journey with my list of quick declutter tasks by signing up below.