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To declutter your home and your life is something I always wondered. With the New Year in full swing, many of us are busy carrying out all of our new resolutions – one of which is to become more organized! Many are looking for new ways to do more with less space meaning we need to find ways to maximize the use of the spaces we do have, including our closets. When it comes to organization, there are no one size fits.
For instance, maybe your primary focus isn’t aesthetics but function, she said. Maybe you need a system that helps you get out the door quicker. Or you need an organized kitchen because you love to cook. Or you need organizational systems that are easy enough for your kids and spouse to maintain.
Paper Is Not Your Friend – Digitize Your Endless Piles of Paper
A huge clutter culprit is paper. While many of you are likely going paperless with many of your bills and possibly even your newspaper, our everyday lives still generate a fair amount of paper by-products: receipts, invoices, junk mail, magazines, how-to guides, and warranties, to name but a few. A paper shredder is a great and fast way to get rid of a ton of paper.
When It Comes to Storage, More is Not Better
Whether you’re re-organizing or custom finishing your closet, your wardrobe or your refrigerator and pantry, the key is to remove everything from whatever area you are going through in order to declutter FIRST and THEN decide what storage solutions you’re going to need for what you’re keeping and you will be one step closer to your goal to declutter your home.
Otherwise, you could end up buying boxes and bins, shelves and baskets that you don’t need, tossing everything in and not really going through the effort of sorting and removing what can realistically be recycled or donated. Result? You’ll never find anything again and won’t be any further ahead in staying decluttered and tidy!
Donate Unused Items
You might be able to give to those in need while also paring down your belongings for better organization. If you have children, donating unwanted toys is a wonderful way to not only share the love during the holiday season but also clear out some room for any new toys they might get for Christmas or Hanukkah. It’s the perfect time to declutter your home.
If you can guiltlessly box up items and drop them off weekly at your thrift shop or charity of choice, then do that. If you hesitate and are worried that you might need something, tape up the boxes and store them in your attic, basement, or garage for now.
Date the boxes When six months have passed, take any boxes that you haven’t opened and dropped them off without any worries (and without opening them!). You haven’t needed the items in this long and it’s unlikely you’ll need them again. If you have needed items, then keep those specific things and get rid of the rest.
Put Away Anything You Don’t Use on the Daily
How many things do you actually use every day? Probably not a whole lot — which is why it makes no sense that there’s always so much clutter in every area of your home.
To keep things clean and organized, put away anything you don’t use daily, whether that’s in storage bins in your closet or in drawers under your bed, it’s a great way to declutter your home. Your space will instantly feel refreshed and you’ll realize how little you really need to be happy.
Why toss out used-up plastic wet wipe containers when they’re so handy for other things? To organize an out-of-control plastic bag situation – you know, the one that often occurs in your pantry or beneath the kitchen sink – stick them all in the wipe container so you can easily pull one out every time you need it.
Rethink Your Clothes-Folding Method – Marie Kondo?
Instead of folding your clothes as quickly as you can, start folding them with a purpose to better organize your wardrobe. Marie Kondo has a different method of folding each type of clothing, but shirts tend to get more unruly than most things in your drawers. By folding them in smaller squares, you can set them up in vertical lines and see exactly what you have when you’re deciding what to wear.
Don’t Wait to Put Things Away
Remember all the many times have you said you’ll “put it away later” only to end up with a messy room full of things you never actually put away? If it’s a lot, you’re not alone. To keep your life more organized, stop procrastinating and put things back where they go the instant you’re done using them. Feeling overwhelmed? Check out 6 Simple Ideas to start decluttering when feeling overwhelmed. Your future self will thank you.
Get it out of your house
A critical part of the organizing process is dispersing whatever you don’t want, Wilska said. When you’re sorting and decide to get rid of something, get it out of the house, whether it’s into the recycling bin or to Goodwill, she said.
That’s because when you put it in the hall closet, you just watch “it get reabsorbed into that space [and] it can start to feel like why did I even bother?” Try dedicating 15 minutes a month for dropping things off.