When it comes to objects in your home, less could definitely be more. This is because less to clean, less to organise and less things getting in the way can leads to being more organised, having more time, of course, more space.
But where to start? Decluttering is easier said than done. Or is it? What might at first appear a stressful and strenuous exercise could actually be an enjoyable and fulfilling experience as you rid yourself of all those items you can live without. Before you know it you’ll be a minimalist.
Make a list
The humble list could be your first step towards decluttered harmony. Start by writing down which places in your home need TLC – Tons Less Clutter. For each room write down which items you can do without. Then, act on your new list and no changing your mind on what you’ve earmarked for the door. Be strict with yourself or you’ll just be back at square one.
Play ‘Fill the Bin Bag’
Everything’s more fun when it’s a game, so turn decluttering into one and you can actually enjoy doing it. Just grab a bin bag, then see how quickly you can fill it with things you don’t need around the home. You might be surprised how quickly you fill that first one. And how much better you’ll feel once you have! After a successful first round of this decluttering game, see if you can beat your time by doing it again.
A little every day
Decluttering doesn’t have to be a race. You might find it easier if you do a little every day. Even if that’s just getting rid of one thing. That’s right, just one item every day – no matter how small. Now, this might not sound like very much, but just think, in a year you’ll have said goodbye to 356 objects. 356 if it’s a leap year! If you’re not in a hurry, this might be the perfect way to free space without it feeling like a chore.
The clothes hanger experiment
This was made famous on the Oprah Show in America. It’s a simple, yet effective way to find out which clothes in your wardrobe you don’t wear anymore. Start by placing all the clothes in one direction so they are facing away from you. Then, for the next six months, every time you wear something, put it back afterwards facing towards you. After the six months is up, take a look at how many pieces of clothing are still facing away from you. These are the ones you need to get rid of. No matter how much you may think you like them, you don’t wear them.
Save for that something special
Pick out things you don’t want then try and sell them online. Whether it’s on Ebay, Gumtree or even on Facebook to friends, you’ll get a thrill from every sale and you’ll be amazed what you can sell. After all, no matter what it is, you bought it to start off with, so there’s sure to be someone else out there who will be interested. The money you make will soon add up and if you set yourself a goal, you can use the final amount to buy that something special – just make sure it doesn’t end up cluttering the house!
Take the 12-12-12 challenge
As we’ve said it’s easier to de-clutter when it’s fun, so here is another way to make it more interesting. In the 12-12-12 challenge you have to find 12 things to throw away, 12 things to give to charity and 12 things to keep. You’ll find that as you’re concentrating on placing 36 items into these three options you’ll be getting rid of two-thirds of them without it being a traumatic experience.
One container, one collection
If there is something you have a set or collection of, keep it all in one container. When this container is full, take out what you don’t want if you get more of the same rather than starting to fill another container.
Pass it on
Once you’ve read a book will you read it again? Probably not. So, why not let someone else enjoy it? Pick out five books, then for each one, pick a friend or one of the family who you think will like it. Write a nice message inside and give it to them asking them to pass it on after they’ve finished reading it. Decluttering has never felt so good.
As you can see, there are plenty of different ways to declutter around the home. You just need to try a few to find out which ones work best for you. Once you start you’ll find it easier than you thought to take back control of your life, gain more space, feel less stressed and never again be embarrassed by clutter.
Emily Musker is a Senior Interior Designer at Waddington Interiors, who regularly chooses Siemens Home Appliances for her projects and her kitchen at home.
“I’m a lover of clean line, minimalist spaces, but also have to face the reality that every day life doesn’t always lend itself to living like that. So, when designing our kitchen, functionality was just as important as the aesthetic. The key to creating clear counter tops living for us was to ensure everything would ultimately have its place, and to think about where each item should be positioned to best suit a typical meal time – from the prep and the cooking, to serving up and clearing away. During the design process, we created an inventory of food, utensils and any other kitchen items, and marked up the plans and elevations to make sure all goods could be accommodated. It means that now when using the kitchen there is no need to leave anything out on the counter tops, as everything is to hand in drawers and cupboards.”
Visit Emily’s Instagram profile here to see more of her projects.
All images featured in this blog are credited to Emily Musker.
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