A Room-by-Room Guide to Decluttering Your Home
The Art of Decluttering (and yes, it is an art) is one we all attempt at some time or another – often multiple times. For some, the challenge is a welcome one; for others, it pulls them into the grips of despair. Where does one begin? How to do it without wanting to tear your hair out?
How can we do it in such a way that the clutter doesn’t just pile up again so that within a few weeks you’re left with more mess than you started with?
It’s all about having a plan.
We've put together our best decluttering tips and tricks to get you started! We know different things are going to resonate with each of you, so take what stands out to you most and turn that clutter into clean!
Here are some basic tips when it comes to decluttering!
1. Focus on one room at a time
Try not to veer into different rooms as you work because you could lose track of what you’re doing and where you’re at – which can result in frustration.
2. Pre-prepare a music playlist
Music is one of the best ways to enjoy any kind of chore and can not only help pass the time, but may also pump up the motivation factor to keep you going longer than you thought!
3. 5 big baskets/bins
It’s good to have these prepared. The Big 5 are so you can sort your clutter into 5 sections: Put Away (stuff that needs putting back in storage), Fix (stuff that needs fixing), Recycling (speaks for itself), Charity (anything that can be donated to a charitable organization) and Garbage (anything that needs to go in the trash).
You will feel so much better with these bins because it makes everything a lot more organized and you only have to decide what goes where!
4. Reward yourself
Decluttering is hard work. It can get boring fast and it can be demoralizing if there’s a lot to do. Reward yourself after each room with something – your favorite Netflix show, a cup of hot cocoa, or something delicious like this banana almond cookie (the latter after you’ve decluttered the kitchen!)
How to Declutter Each Room
Let’s start with the first and usually easiest room – the bathroom.
1. Expired? - First, begin with the medicine cabinet. Have your bins at hand. Throw out all outdated make-up, skincare, medication, etc. Leave whatever else you need but keep the ones you use the most at the front so they are easily accessible.
2. Storage Time - Move onto the drawers. Repeat the same as the cabinet.
3. Shower Power - Move onto the shower/bath. Throw out/recycle anything you don’t use.
Now for the bedroom. You are going to need some bins and good tunes for this one.
1. Tidy It Up - Make or strip the bed. There is something very unappealing about decluttering a bedroom with a messy bed. It’s usually the biggest piece of furniture in the room and if you’re clearing things out, the last thing you want to see is this messy bed reminding you of the mess itself! The key to decluttering is to make things as visually appealing as possible while you’re doing it.
2. Storage Clutter - Begin with nightstands, shelves, desks, and other areas where things are resting on it. There’s usually loads of clutter here, so have the bins at hand so you don't get distracted.
Go through each drawer and meticulously divide everything into the 5 bins.
3. The Closet is Next - The closet can be a bit daunting but just remember: you’re decluttering, which means you are getting rid of things you no longer wear. Clothes can all be put in the Put-Away bin unless you no longer want them – in which case, Recycle or Charity are good options.
Decluttering the closet can be challenging for some – it sometimes means letting go of things you’ve had for a long time and they’ll usually have memories attached. It can be hard to let go of things, but often this results in hoarding.
4. Lastly - Return everything to its proper place. This is the time to take everything that is on your floor and put it away neatly. We suggest making a game out of it by picking things up by category (color, item type, etc.).
Then comes the kitchen.
This is challenging for many because the kitchen is packed with all kinds of things and who knows what you’ll actually find growing in some far-off corner of the bread bin! But be brave – your kitchen needs you (and so does your health).
1. Cold Stuff - Begin with the fridge/freezer. Throw out everything molding/out of date. Clean thoroughly.
2. Food Storage - Move onto cupboards and drawers with tins, herbs, spices, flours, etc. Remove everything. Go through the items with a fine-toothed comb and throw away anything out of date or which you will never eat or use. You may find yourself appalled by the waste at this point and if this happens, just grit your teeth. Remember, this is about decluttering. (Remember this the next time you buy the biggest box of cornstarch for one recipe.)
Put everything back in compartments where everything of the same type is lumped together so they’re easier for you to find.
3. Cleaning Supplies - Go under the sink and assess what’s there. You may find old cleaning things which you never use or empty bottles. Recycle or throw away anything that no longer serves a purpose. Remember, it’s important to empty each space first and then divide everything into the 5 bins.
4. Wipe it Down - Finally, tackle the countertops. Place everything in one of the bins and then wipe down! You’ll feel fantastic after it’s done (and can then treat yourself to those cookies!)
Living Room Decluttering
Finally, there is the living room.
Usually, this is a difficult one for people because it tends to get used the most. I would suggest a thoroughly methodical approach to this room.
Follow these steps:
- Divide (into bins)
- Wipe down
Following that formula can make the living room decluttering much easier.
1. Surfaces - Begin with the bookcases, side tables, and coffee table if you have one.
2. Electronics - Next, consoles and then move onto the entertainment area (like the TV).
Then move onto the electronics section. Assess every single wire and plug. Do you use it? What’s it for? Divide them into the boxes before putting back the ones which you use.
3. Additional clutter - Then move onto other areas you might have there, such as play areas or meditation dens. Assess everything in them and divide everything into the 5 bins.
While you’re doing all this, make sure you’ve got some thoroughly motivational music playing in the background!
Here are some of our favorite decluttering tips and hopefully, you can use some of them to help you get started on making over your home! Remember, you can make the process of decluttering a fun and simple one if you choose to. It may seem like a daunting task, but breaking it down step by step can make things easier on you, bringing newness and freshness to your environment!
Related Article: Clutter Free Home, Clutter Free Mind