I love a good clear out and having drastically cleared my crap a few years ago and maintained the habit, I thought I’d put together my top 5 tips for decluttering your space, whether you’re moving or not.
It may save your sanity, release feelings of calm and well-being. Or make you want to go and shop again. Resist!
It doesn’t have to be professional unless, ermm, you need it. Ask a friend or family member who isn’t scared of you, or any tantrum you may throw, to come round and help you get the ball rolling. Sugary snacks or alcohol may help. I am of course not recommending either. *cough*
Decluttering is a process and it can be an emotional one too – things trigger memories and we don’t want to lose the attachment. This is where taking a photo of the thing can enable you to release it into the wild. I recommend saving photo’s online, in more than one place if they’re precious, so you don’t end up crying over a box of doughnuts if something gets deleted or corrupted or lost. I work virtually, so I save mine on Flickr.com and Google Drive. But you may choose to save it to a hard drive and/or device as well as somewhere online.
Don’t leave it to the last minute
Seriously. Don’t. When my sister and I moved to Greece for a few months in 2016, she wanted to leave sorting her house out to the last few days and I flatly refused. Why? I know from my own experience that you have probably seriously underestimated the amount of shite you actually have hidden away. I can also appreciate how overwhelming it can feel to empty out just one cupboard and have to decide whether to take, store, donate, sell or chuck the stuff. Each item is one decision. And the more decisions you have to make the more exhausting it is. And stressful. And it will always take longer than you think. Save your sanity, start small and start now.
Don’t expect to get it all done in one go
Start as small as you need to. One drawer, one cupboard, one room. Set yourself a goal. Mutter to yourself; ‘Today I shall just do this.’ And then do it. You may find you go on to do more and then end up prancing around congratulating yourself and Snapchatting your smugness to all and sundry. Yay You!
Remind yourself WHY you want to declutter
Write it down. Stick it up (no, not THERE). Read it often. And remind yourself how GREAT you’ll feel once you can see the floor again. And smug. Did I already mention that? Smug, and FREE, and lighter — without any need for calorie restriction. Now, I call THAT a big win!