Declutter, feel better, get ready to move home...
As you may have seen Marie Kondo explain on Netflix, there are compelling reasons to declutter, it creates more space, forces you to decide what is important to you, it helps shape your taste, makes cleaning easier. And, it definitely helps when selling your home!
Let's explore how to approach decluttering your home.
Change your perspective
If decluttering is something you constantly put off then it’s likely you don’t realise just how beneficial it can be, not only on a practical level in your home but also for your state of mind. Clutter, however you define it, can be bad for your health. According to Psychology Today, people tend to feel like life is out of control when they surround themselves with more things than they can manage. Mess causes stress – and you might find a little clutter clearing to be really therapeutic.
This is your clutter clearing mantra. Decluttering can be such a big task that it’s hard to know where to start. The first step is to remember that it’s not just about containing things you don’t really need in a lovely selection of storage baskets, it’s about getting rid of things too. Clear first, organise afterwards and only then do you store.
Giving is good
It goes without saying that there are a lot of people who’ll appreciate your unused clothes and even excess furniture more than you do. Don’t just throw unwanted things in the bin, put as much stuff as you can from clothes and toys to blankets and toiletries aside for charity.
And that goes for furniture too
When it’s time to let go of clutter you want it out of your house as quickly as possible, you may like to sell via Gumtree or eBay. And of course, there are many causes and charities to choose from, here’s a Google map of Bristol charities and donation spots to help choose - bit.ly/BristolCharityDonationsMap
Most of us have things we cling onto unnecessarily, whether that’s for sentimental reasons, because we feel bad throwing it away or because we think our childhood toys might be worth a fortune on eBay one day. When going through old stuff it’s important to ask yourself, do I really need this to cherish the memory? Will my Nan even notice if I give away this unused gift she got me five years ago? Will my cabbage patch kid ever be worth £1000? If the answer is no, let it go. With less stuff, it'll be much easier to achieve that minimal, cosy-clean (spacious) look.
Think about the time you last used/wore it
Another excuse we give ourselves for not throwing stuff away is ‘I might need it again someday’, especially with clothes. If you're one of those people with a wardrobe full of stuff but nothing to wear then it's time for a clear out. If you haven’t used/worn something you’ve come across in the last 6 months, OK, a year then, you should probably get rid of it. If you found something and thought "I’ve been wondering where that was...” then you should probably get rid of it. If you’ve found something you didn’t even know you had then you should definitely get rid of it. Again eBay is an option, offload to friends or family? But definitely consider local charities.
Enhance your wardrobe storage
So you’ve cleared out all the clothes you’ve accepted you’ll never wear or fit into again. Now work on making the most of your wardrobe space to clear away clutter from elsewhere. Shoe racks, hanging wardrobe organisers and wardrobe storage boxes are a great way to maximise storage space and prevent clothes from piling up on the floor (Ikea do them all!). And if you’re moving home, serious viewers will want to see how the storage will work for them so they'll take a look. So you want them to look spacious, and you’ll probably use the new organisers in your new home!
Clean out the cupboards
Same for cupboards, you'll need to go through them too. A good clear out of your cupboards from the kitchen to the living room to the bathroom, oh and under the stairs. And they will open up so much space when it’s time to organise and store the things you’ve chosen to keep.
Clear the shelves
Shelves are for displaying those few treasured, well-chosen pieces that help make it 'home'. Make sure everything on your shelf is there for a reason, it may have a practical purpose but also looks neat and suits your space. Even when marketing your home for sale it should have some character and personality.
Read about decluttering
So if watching Marie Kondo on Netflix isn't your thing then here are a few books from the last few years. From The Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo to The Joy of Less: A Minimalist Living Guide by Francine Jay, here's a list of the 15 best sellers on how to declutter if you need some extra help.
Tue 07 Apr 2020