If all of your stuff is taking over your home, it might be time to declutter. And because I want you to live your best clutter-free life, here are 6 decluttering tips to help you stay organized everyday.
1. Find a System that Works for You
If spending $500 at the Container Store to put stuff away isn’t for you, that’s perfectly OK. Just because someone on TikTok did it doesn’t mean you have to. You have to figure out what would work best for you and what makes it easier to put stuff away.
If you do want jars and baskets but don’t want to spend a fortune, head over to your local Goodwill or other second-hand stores. You’ll find a bunch of them there. If you want them to match a little more, you can find them at discounted stores like HomeGoods or Marshalls; you may just have to visit a couple to get the quantity you need.
2. Make Your Bed Everyday
Ok. Hear me out. Research shows that people who make their beds in the morning are more productive and feel more accomplished at the end of the day.
Admiral William McRaven, a retired United States Navy four-star admiral, once delivered a commencement speech. One of the points he made was concerning the transformative power of the daily bed-making habit. He said, “If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride, and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another. By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter.”
And we all know that military folks are some of the most disciplined people out there. So, maybe let’s take a queue from them.
Also, a made bed makes your room look cleaner and more tidy.
3. Make Sure Everything You Have Has a Home
The reason you may have clutter is because your stuff doesn’t have a home. You will find it easier to put things back where they belong once you designate specific spots for them. Keys should go in a bowl or key hook. Mail should go in a mail basket or bin. Shoes should go on a shoe rack or mat. Dog toys should go in a toy basket. You get the point.
4. Put it Away Now
I used to HATE putting away laundry. I would happily wash and fold it, but the physical act of putting away was torture, but I forced myself to do it. Now, I still don’t like it, but my feelings about it are not as negative as they used to be. I wash, I fold, I put away. Otherwise, I have piles of laundry that I have to rewash, fold, and begrudgingly put away the second time, because now I don’t know if it’s clean.
So. Laundry done? Put it away. Taking your shoes off? Put them on the shoe rack (or wherever your shoes go). Dishes squeaky clean? Put them away. Opened up all your mail to realize it’s mostly junk? Throw it away.
If you just take the few seconds or minutes now to just do it, you’ll realize that it’s not so bad and, bonus, your home will stay cleaner and more organized along the way.
5 Get Rid of Stuff You Don’t Use
I have a hard and fast rule: if I haven’t used something within one year, it’s getting donated or tossed out. You could follow Mari Kondo’s advice and keep it if it brings you joy. If it doesn’t, toss it. If that’s too weird for you, you could follow Emily Ley’s strategy and ask yourself, “Is it my favorite, is the absolute best, or do I absolutely need it?”
The strategy you choose to help you decide how to declutter and get rid of stuff is clearly up to you. It’s just important to do it. We don’t want to see you on the next episode of Hoarders.
6. Practice the One-In-One-Out Rule
For instance. Do you have a million coffee mugs because you really like them cause they’re so pretty, but now they’ve taken over all your cabinet space and spilling over onto the countertop? Well, here’s a rule for you. You can’t buy another mug until you’ve gotten rid of one.
Now think of that thing you have way too much of; the same rule applies. You can’t buy another one until you get rid of one.
Don’t wait for Spring cleaning to tidy up your space. Take the task on daily by doing little things like making your bed and putting stuff away right away. You can do it!
Now that you’ve decluttered your place, here are a few tips on how often you should clean things.