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Virginia Wells

Mastering the Art of Decluttering: Essential Dos and Don’ts for a Clutter-Free Home

Embarking on a decluttering journey can be both liberating and daunting. As a decluttering expert, I’ve witnessed the pitfalls and triumphs that individuals encounter along the way. To help you navigate the decluttering process with confidence, here are some clutter-free dos and don’ts to keep in mind: 

Do: Start Small and Stay Consistent 

Begin decluttering by tackling one area at a time, whether it’s a closet, a drawer, or a room. You decide on one thing at a time so don’t try to bite off a huge area and expect to get great success. Choose one small space and get success with that. This will build your confidence to do more. 

Consistency is key to long-term success. Set aside dedicated time each week to focus on decluttering, even if it’s just for a few minutes a day. 

An example of just a few minutes of decluttering done a day, can be shown by Julia, a married mother of two lively girls, balances a demanding career as an executive with the everyday challenges of family life. After joining the WellSorted Home Course she was put into practice the tips around setting small, manageable timeframes to declutter each day, to see change. One of her achievements was conquering the linen cupboard which had been spilling out into the sitting room. With the time management strategies learnt from the course, and the WellSorted Six Tub Method, Julia was able to get her linen cupboard (and sitting room) in order. Check out her before and after photos.

Do: Prioritise Decluttering Over Storage Solutions 

Before rushing out to buy storage bins and baskets, focus on decluttering and purging unnecessary items. Storage solutions can only do so much if you’re holding onto items you no longer need or use. Also, your storage needs will change in shape and size once you’ve let go of the unneeded and superfluous. 

Do: Embrace Simplicity 

Simplify your belongings by letting go of items that no longer serve a purpose or bring you joy. Embracing a minimalist mindset can lead to a more peaceful and organised home. Being clear on your vision for a simplified life, can help you let go of more. This leads to more space and more time to do things you love. 

Do: Donate, Recycle, or Sell Unwanted Items 

Instead of letting clutter pile up, donate, recycle, or sell items that are no longer needed. Not only does this help reduce waste, but it also benefits others who may find value in your unwanted belongings. Understanding your decluttering values can help you decide if you even bother putting time into selling items, and how much time to commit to rehoming items to their ‘best’ home. The WellSorted Course goes over these values, and provides steps on how to navigate these values. 

What about some don’ts to avoid when decluttering: 

Don’t: Rush the Process 

Decluttering takes time and patience. Avoid trying to tackle your entire home in one weekend, as this can lead to burnout and a feeling of failure. Recognise that it took years or decades to create the clutter, so it is going to take some time to undo it.  

Don’t: Rely Solely on Baskets and Storage Solutions 

While baskets and storage bins can be useful for organising, they’re not always the answer. Before adding more storage solutions, consider whether you’ve decluttered enough to make them necessary. 

Don’t: Turn Your Home into a Recycling Centre 

Avoid letting things that are destined for a recycling centre or could be reused by someone, somewhere fill up your home.  It’s great that you are environmentally conscious, or what to see an item be reused, but keeping it in your house until you discover a place worthy of reusing or recycling it, essentially turns your house into a temporary resource management plant/Recycling centre or tip. If you must rehome it, dedicate 10 minutes now to finding the place to donate it, otherwise let it go. Leaving it in your home, isn’t saving it from being wasted. If it’s not used in your house, it’s being wasted. Don’t waste your space too. Set some time aside daily to reset your home using these clutter-free dos and don’ts (at least to keep it to the status quo) and get some of these items out.  

Don’t: Over-organise 

Striving for a Pinterest-worthy home can lead to over-organisation and unnecessary stress. Remember that real life doesn’t always mirror the perfection found on social media. Often what is photographed isn’t functional or effective for a home. Focus on creating a space that works for you and your lifestyle, and creating homes for what is being kept… rather than striving for perfection. 

By following these clutter-free dos and don’ts, you can approach decluttering with confidence and achieve lasting results. Remember, the journey to a clutter-free home is unique to each individual, so find what works best for you and embrace the process with an open mind and a willingness to let go. 

If you’re struggling to decide what to do, and how to do it, why not get in depth tips in the WellSorted Home Course where we go through your vision, your values, and a process to finally get your home in order. 

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