Because it’s Christmas/New Year week, I’m taking a little break and thought I’d share a couple of my most popular posts again, in case you missed them. This is from July, 2013. I’ll be back on January 1, 2015 with a new post for the new year! x
Decluttering is a big part of organisation, and whilst some will tell you just to chuck it all and that it doesn’t mean anything, for some of us, it means a whole lot. My mother passed away when I was a baby and there are things of hers that, strictly are no longer needed, but mean the world to me and I would never part with. Because decluttering is an important part of my organisation challenge, I wanted to share some tips and ideas that might help both me and you get a little closer to that organised home we’re looking for.
Top tips for Decluttering:
- Be kind to yourself – I put this first as it’s the most important. It may be easy to remove the rubbish and the broken things that just never made it to the bin, but if it’s things that make you feel a bit sad or overwhelmed, it’s ok to take a break or leave it to another day. Slowly is sometimes the best option.
- Do a little bit at a time – I know that you can feel pumped and ready to clean all the things, but start small and just look at doing a room or a drawer at a time. If you’re doing it for yourself, there’s no need to rush it. Try this method.
- Make a safe place for storing the things you want to keep – Depending on what it is, you might not want it on display just now but you want to keep it for future generations or just because it’s special to you. Think about what you’re keeping and look for a storage solution that will keep it safe ie Acid Free for old photos; tissue paper for clothes; cool dry spaces that are unlikely to get water damage; etc.
- If your heart is telling you you’re not ready to part with it – don’t – If that pull in your heart is telling you that you’re not ready to part with it, don’t do it. Pack it up safely for another day. I’m a big believer in trusting your gut (and your heart) and if they’re saying no, there’s a reason.
- Scan the photos and documents and take photos of the items before you store them – Take a copy and even an inventory before storing your items. Yes, it will take longer, but should something they get lost or damaged (especially the documents or photos) you will have a copy. The photos are also good for insurance purposes, should you ever need them. You could create folders on your computer to store all of this.
- Don’t let other people decide for you – If it’s something really special to you but other people can’t see it, don’t let them decide that you don’t need it anymore. Remember to be kind to yourself.
- Share – if the items are family heirlooms that you don’t want in your home, see if anyone else in your family wants them. Sometimes it’s a treasure they have always wanted and can give it a new loving home.
Everyone has their own way of organising their home and it often depends on who is living in it and what age they are, as to what gets put on display and what is kept in storage. I’ve said before that I’m a big believer in homes telling the stories of the people who live in them, and that means that things change over time. What was once not able to be put on display may one day become the centrepiece.
I truly believe that getting organised, should lead to a home being more fun and that it’s not just a guilt trap that makes you get rid of the things you love. Decluttering, for me, is a process of removing what is no longer loved or needed (both, not either) from your home so there is room for love, laughter and new things that bring joy.
Don’t forget that first point and be kind to yourself when tackling this, and these mini makeover essentials may help too.
Do you have a method for decluttering? I’d love to hear!