15 Simple Decluttering Tips for an Organized Home
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Create a Clear Decluttering Plan With a Defined Goal
One of the most important tips to keep in mind when it comes to decluttering is to begin with a goal and create a plan around it. Your goal can be a simple as clearing out a single drawer or shelf, or as broad as decluttering your entire home. Think about how much time you'll need to complete your task and pick an end-goal that's manageable.
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Visualize What Your Space Will Look Like Decluttered
It’s easy to get discouraged when you have a lot of decluttering to do, but a vision of the final product can help you stay motivated. If you feel overwhelmed, take a moment or two to imagine how nice it will be to have the space decluttered. A vision can help you keep perspective and make it easier to get your work done.
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Clear Out the Space Before You Begin
Turning your room into a blank canvas can help you figure out what to do with each one of your belongings. Before you begin to sort, organize, or clean, take some time to move things into a new space. Not only will it be easier to sort once it’s moved, but you’ll also be able to take inventory of what you own as you move it.
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Sort Your Belongings Before Organizing Them
Organization is the goal when decluttering your space, but don’t try to put things away until you’ve sorted through them. Create a sorting system to help you decide what to do with your possessions, and stick to it as you work. Even if it’s just a few piles for what you plan to keep and what you plan to throw away, you’ll find a sorting system makes it much easier to declutter your space.
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Wait to Buy New Storage Solutions
You might be tempted to buy new organizing materials before you know exactly what your space needs, but this can actually cause more clutter in the long run. You'll save time and money by waiting until after you've sorted your belongings to pick up new storage tools like bins and shelving.
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Declutter One Space at a Time
One of the best strategies for a thorough and lasting decluttering is to take things one step at a time. For example, if you’re decluttering your whole home, complete a single room before you move onto the next one. It may take more time than doing everything at once, but your patience will pay off with neater rooms that remain decluttered for longer.
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Stop Clutter Before It Starts
Clutter takes time to accumulate, so keep an eye out for spaces like drawers or closets that might be getting full or out of hand. Plan a few minutes of each day to declutter one or two specific parts of your space. A daily decluttering habit will take care of existing clutter, while helping you avoid clutter in the future.
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Clear Off Flat Surfaces First
Avoid feeling like you don’t know where to begin by decluttering flat surfaces like tabletops, countertops, and shelves before anything else. If those are already in pretty good shape, start by clearing floor space that’s accumulated unwelcome junk. A well-defined starting point will help you dive into decluttering without wasting time.
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Create a Paper Filing System
Paper is usually the biggest culprit when it comes to clutter, and organizing stacks is often the most difficult part of organization. A paper-filing system that uses drawers or trays can work wonders for loose papers. An intuitive system will make it easy to file important documents as they come in and prevent paper-related clutter in the future.
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Use Wall Space for Hanging Storage and Shelves
Wall-mounted organization tools can do wonders for keeping clutter at bay. Shelf systems are great for storing books and media, while wooden peg-boards take care of tools and other utilities in a shed or garage.
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Ask Family or Friends for Help With Bigger Projects
If your space is large or significantly cluttered, don’t be afraid to ask family or friends to join in and help. The more hands you have decluttering, the faster the job will go. Do your best to give your helpers clear instructions before they begin, and make sure to show your gratitude afterwards.
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Be Mindful of What You Bring Home
There’s nothing wrong with the occasional impulse buy when you’re out and about, but it doesn’t take long for small purchases to turn into a cluttered mess. Take inventory of the objects you bring with you every time you enter your home. If you start to notice a problem, try and think about your spending habits and better ways to decide what you buy.
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Set Aside Intentional Places for Your Belongings
Once your space is decluttered you'll want to make sure it stays that way. Designating spaces for specific items in your home will get you into the habit of putting things back where they belong rather than letting them land wherever they may.
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Discuss Cluttering Habits With Roommates
If you live with roommates you may want to spend some time talking about any of their habits that are causing clutter. Be honest and direct as you talk, but don't be insulting or rude. Remember that you may have some habits that need changing as well, so try not to point fingers.
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Take Breaks as Needed
Achieving a clutter-free space can be a lot of work, so don’t let yourself get burnt out before reaching your goal. If you find that you're getting tired as you declutter, give yourself permission to take a few minutes off to relax and unwind. 15 minutes might be all it takes for you to get recharged and ready to jump back into decluttering.
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