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I just love the feeling after a big declutter.
I have a super fast declutter routine that works really well for me. You can check it out here: Quick Declutter Tips to Reclaim Your Home.
Everything’s in it’s right place and I feel I can take on the world again.
And then slowly, slowly it unravels.
And once again we’re drowning in clutter.
Nothing gets put away and the chaos returns …
What on earth am I doing wrong?
Very simply, I’ve never been brutal enough.
So I have turned over a new leaf…
… and this is what is now working very well for me keeping our family home uncluttered:
Make Your Declutter Last
1. Declutter the Big Stuff First
I know lots of declutter programmes say declutter one small thing each day.
But focusing on decluttering the big things that free up huge amounts of space, or cut major hassle, works best for me.
You see the benefits fast and you can radically move stuff around.
2. Aim For 20% Free Space in Any Storage Unit
I’ve failed so miserably at this in the past but it is so major!
To make your declutter last, you need to keep going once you’ve got everything to fit…
…and aim for at least 20% free space in any storage unit.
Not because that means space for more stuff!!
But because the space makes it easy to put stuff away in a hurry even when it is jumbled up a bit.
I find this hard on a single declutter.
I get to the 105% point … i.e. slightly overflowing … and stall but I know now I have to keep going … and going.
And it’s such a good feeling once you’re done, ‘cos it really does stay tidier.
To give you an example, my crockery cupboard was a nightmare … rammed full, you had to shift stuff around to get anything out and I constantly had to grab a chair to reach the top shelf.
Now, everything I need daily is in easy reach … at first I felt I was wasting space but it stays tidy and saves me time and hassle throughout the day.
3. Totally Stop Buying Stuff
I love bits and bobs … we have shelves upon shelves of books and ornaments.
But the clutter gets me down too much … it means hours a week tidying or being in a constant frenzy because I don’t know where stuff is.
The only way to make your declutter last is to stop buying stuff!
So, in the nicest possible way suggest to ever generous family and friends to give as gifts things like trips and museum passes that don’t take up space.
4. If Anything Does Come In, Something Else Must Go
However hard you try, new things do sneak their way into the house.
But if something new comes into the house, look for something of at least equal size that has to go!
This is something to keep in mind where kids’ toys are concerned. It is super easy drown in kids’ toys. Though I do have a brilliantly useful way of organising toys (if I do say so myself) it is far easier to keep kids’ bedrooms, playrooms and areas where they play clear, if there ISN’T AS MUCH STUFF!!!
Another incentive to clearing out the clutter is if you can make some extra money from it.
It’s very easy to spend a bunch of time you don’t have trying to make money selling clutter, but we’ve got an 8 Point Plan for selling clutter easily, that will actually make you money.
5. Now Do a Little Everyday
Once you’ve got the big stuff done an space to spare in your biggest areas of hassle, it’s easier to see the benefits of decluttering a little everyday.
You could be systematic and go through each small area, but I find I now instinctively spot stuff we don’t need as I go round the house and drop it into a basket to go to our local charity shop every month.
Now don’t get me wrong!
Our house is a work in progress, lots still needs to go. But wherever I’ve used these simple decluttering tips, its stayed tidier, more organised and clutter free. Hurrah!
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