Decluttering Made EasyDec 04, 2023
Decluttering Made Easy: 4 Simple Tips to Clear Your Clutter
Originally published 2/26/2016
I'm one of those weird people. I get a little giddy when I organize. It's a rush to walk into a room that has been picked up and is in order--then the kids come in and my little moment is over.
Ha! Now before you get rid of the kids in an effort to keep your house clean or completely give up on your home, know there is hope! You can have an organized home with kids in the house--it may not be clean at every moment of the day--but you can have order.
What Does Not Work...
My original technique was to organize my clutter...stick it in a sturdy, clear bin with a pretty little label on it and--"Voila!" I had an organized box and an organized home. Nope!
You must PURGE! I've found that as my family size has grown the best way for me to get organized is to "clear out the clutter" — not just keep trying to organize all the "stuff."
What Does Work...
Do you really want to know my "secret sauce" for decluttering? It's PRAYER! Now don’t laugh, but before I start to declutter, I pray. Really, I do! I pray for God to help me be ruthless as I sort through things. I pray for the strength to say goodbye to things that are creating clutter and stress and interfering with my ability to manage my home and my time better for Him. I also ask for vision for each room. By this, I mean that I might spend time at the end of my “purge” moving furniture around for better function, or even have an idea for something new to put on the wall to make the room more inviting and bless those who enter the room. God blesses our work when we invite Him to be a part of it.
The simple way of explaining how I approach decluttering is that I go room-by-room and create four piles. Sometimes I use laundry baskets to help me sort, other times I just use sticky notes in front of my piles to keep things straight.
My “Four-Leaf” Approach to Decluttering:
* Keep * Toss * Give Away * Sell *
- Keep! I try to be very brutal with what I decide to put in the keep pile. These items are assigned a “home” and get put away as soon as my big sort is done.
- Toss! Trinket treasures, broken toys, and any small meaningless decor are really just “house dander” and belong in the trash. You don’t want it lying around. You only want really special things to be kept.
- Bless! This will hopefully be a big pile. Remind yourself that you might be creating a treasure for someone else with your no-longer-needed items. I used to waste so much time trying to organize things that really just needed to find new homes or be tossed out.
- Sell! Now, this pile is a dangerous pile!! I usually start with the wonderful intent to have a garage sale or put things on Craig’s List.
Give yourself a time frame for this—a goal! Otherwise, this pile needs to become a second trip to your favorite donation location.
Clearing out clutter always feels so good. Plus I get excited that I just kept myself from debuting in the next show of Hoarders.
Learning to simplify is an art. It takes time and practice. However, you and your family will be so blessed by the joy that will follow.
Now it’s your turn!
I want to challenge you! Pick a project! Maybe a room or an area that's been driving you crazy -- and declutter it! I think you just might find that it adds a little extra joy to your day! You can do it! You will be so blessed by less clutter!
For a deeper dive into the ins and outs of decluttering, check out my book, M.O.M.=Master Organizer of Mayhem! I wrote this book just for moms. Most decluttering books don't take into account that we need techniques for when we have kids in the house trying to undo all of our hard work.
GET A FREE DIGITAL COPY OF MY SANITY SAVERS FOR MOMS BOOK!
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