Removing items from your home can be a nostalgic, anxious, and time consuming task...
Every Christmas my mom buys new ornaments for the tree. Over the years she has accumulated a vast amount of items, which take most of the storage space. I tried to convince her to reuse the ornaments from previous years, but she refused to because friends and family “had already seen those ornaments on the tree before.” I found a solution to solve her problem: donating the decorations to our local thrift store. She felt better knowing they would be reused in someone else's house and our home looked cleaner and with additional space to store other important items.
Just like my mother, we all have this habit of keeping things that we no longer need around us. Some say, they are completely harmless and could come at a time of need. But having things that no longer have use for us can create dust, become insects nests, and drag bad energy to ourselves. I thought I’d share a few tips for decluttering your space and allowing the warm energy from the season to fill your home.
Deciding on removing a few items from your home is a difficult process. Some of these things have been around with us for years and they hold an emotional value. To suddenly see them gone can cause regret, remorse, and sadness. But we should remember that less is more and a cluttered home is not only harmful for us, but gives people the wrong impression about us. Thus, once you have made up your mind, remember there is no coming back and tell yourself this decision is for the best. Grab item by item and decide quickly: to keep or not to keep.
Deep Clean, Reorganized, and Repackage
Cleaning thoroughly can help you see what items bring you the most dust and are hiding away dirt from sight, like finding trash under old rugs or expired food items at the back of your fridge. As you clean your home, think of ways you can reuse containers. Sometimes we place small items into large bins and this can take up a lot of space. Moving smaller items into smaller containers will make a difference in your home.
Organized by Piles
This is a very helpful procedure because it helps you sort items out. I suggest making the following lists: donate, sell, pass on, trash, and keep. Once you start compiling these items, make sure you only handle them once, there’s no “change of mind” after this. If you placed them on the “trash pile” once, it was because there are good reasons for placing it there, so leave it.
This should be an easy one and it will help you develop a feeling for letting things go. Simply recognize those items that you know are trash for sure and place them apart. I’ll give you a tip: start with the cosmetic, hygiene, and and other beauty products that are either half way empty or you just never used them before.
Getting Money Back
Another good start for decluttering is selling items that you no longer use. This is a good practice too because not only are you letting go of these items, but you are getting some cash in return. Think of it as compensation for decluttering.
Take on the Closet
Taking the time to go through all your closet can be a day, or even week, long task – so schedule it. You can tackle this by following the “Organized by Piles” tip above. Use the following criteria: hang it, if it has been kept folded for a long time and it still fits: Toss it, if it’s one of those items with holes and paint on it which you thought you could wear again. Donate it, if it doesn't fit you anymore or you never liked how it looked on you.
Shred, Scan, Store
Another category that can easily clutter your home, without you even noticing it, involves this idea of piling documents and tons of papers for later use. These are recipes, utility bill, wrapping papers, and other documents we only saw once. Again, do the piling tip from above and start deciding: do I keep it, do I scan it and upload it into a special could file, or do I store it because I really need it?
Recycle and Reinvent
One of my favorite things to do when looking to declutter my home is to look for an item that has no purpose for me anymore and rethink of a way it could serve as something I need. For example, coffee mugs can be turned into pots for plants, old clothes can be torn apart for cleaning purposes, and empty bottles and containers can be refilled for organization purposes.
I think that one of the best tips I could give you for decluttering your home, is grabbing your best friend, relative, or somebody that you know will give you the most honest answer when you ask “Do I keep it, or do I toss it?” In addition, if you are helping someone declutter a home, remember that some folks have difficulties detaching themselves from certain items, either because these bring them memories or have a special meaning to them. So, be sensitive in the matter, organized and free from all clutter in your life.