With Christmas gifts comes the challenge of adding even more stuff into your home (especially for my kids!). You may look around your home, become overwhelmed, and immedicately add organization to your New Year's resolutions.
Clutter can certainly cause stress, but you may not know where to start. The good news is there are rules to successfully declutter the first time. Whether you create sorting boxes or use the one year rule, you can conquer clutter once and for all.
Create a Keep, Toss, and Donate Box
You need three boxes that you use for any area that you're trying to declutter. One will be for things you want to keep, another will be for items that need to be thrown away, and the last will be for items you want to donate. If you have borrowed things from others, you may also want to have a box for items that need to be returned.
The key to decluttering your entire home is to start with a small area, such as a junk drawer. When you work your way up to larger areas, you have less chance of becoming overwhelmed. Also, don't think about decluttering an entire room at once, break it down into smaller areas so that you're not all over the place.
You want to be quick and ruthless. Don't spend 10 minutes reminiscing about a macaroni sculpture your child made with she was three. Each decision should be quick and based on your first instincts. If you feel that you don't need something, toss or donate it.
Touch an Item Once
Each item should be touched only once during the initial sorting. You don't want to set an item aside so that you can think about it. If you do this, you'll soon have a pile of items that you need to think about. Once you pick an item up, you need to make your decision and move on.
Use the One Year Rule
If you have something in your home that you haven't used in over a year, it needs to go. There are items we only use once a year, such as Christmas decorations. However, there are also items, such as that beginner's crocheting kit that you never got around to trying that need to be donated. If you haven't used it in a year, you're probably not going to.
Go Through the Keep Box Again
Once you've finished an area, go through your keep box a second time and be ruthless. Chances are you put items in there that you really don't need. Try to weed out an additional 25% from the box so that you don't feel the need to declutter again once you put it all away.
Decluttering your home may seem overwhelming, but these tips make things so much easier.
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