We have given boatloads of tips on what to do when decluttering but we have not given you tips on what you should NOT do when decluttering.
None of the following will be earth shattering news. It all makes sense but when we are up to our eyeballs in clutter it is easy to get caught up in the piles of stuff! Shawna and I have been decluttering for ourselves and for other people for a few years now and both agree that it is an ongoing process. What makes us different from other organizers is that we don’t just try and ‘hide’ your clutter to make it organized. We also encourage people to part with their belongings that no longer serve a purpose, or as The Minimalists would say “no longer add value to your life”. We know that things do not make people happy in the long run. Buying stuff is only a band aid that fills you up temporarily and covers up what is really important.
Here are Simple Life Celebrations top 5 things to NOT do when decluttering.
- Purge and Then Containerize.
Please, please, please do not think that the first step to becoming organized is to head to your closest box store and purchase a stack of bins with the snap top lids. Although those colorful storage devices may look appealing, do not waste your money. (Even I have been known to have a thang for that eye candy!) Once you begin to go through your belongings you should find that there are items that you no longer want. As mentioned above these are things that do not add value to your life. You may even find that you have empty boxes and bins when you have gone through your space – BONUS!
- Decide and Then Donate.
Once you have made the decision to get rid of something, decide where it is going. Are you donating it? Giving it to a friend? Recycling it? Getting it Fixed? Selling it? Whatever your decision get it outta there right away because clutter is still clutter if it is hanging around in your home.
- Do Not Bite off More Than You Can Chew.
One day is not under any circumstance enough time to declutter your entire home. (Unless you are an extreme minimalist or live in one of those adorable tiny cabins… OR if you are lucky enough to be on one of those TV shows where an entire crew comes in and over hauls your home). All mentioned are unlikely though so please take my advice and do one room, one area, one closet, one cupboard or even one drawer at a time. It is difficult physical and mental work to declutter, organize and haul things around for several hours at a time. Also spending a couple of hours will prevent burnout and you will feel more rested and encouraged to keep going.
- Perfection Does Not Exist.
Very few of us have homes that look like those in a magazine. Why? Because we actually LIVE. We eat, play, sleep, work and come and go from our homes. Please do not expect perfection because you will more than likely end up disappointed. You need to enjoy the things that remain – those are the items that you have chosen to love, use and (here’s that word again) VALUE.
- This is not the End.
Like anything else in our lives decluttering and organizing are ongoing processes that take upkeep and maintenance. It is not a one-time deal so don’t feel like a failure if in a few weeks things are a bit out of control. It will be a-okay. Remember that you have a new more efficient space but you will still need to continue to tweak, clean and make it even better. No problem!
Oh and before I forget one of the most important Simple Life Rules for Decluttering is to reward your gorgeous self for a job well done. So boil up the kettle for a soothing cuppa, run a hot bath with bubbles, go for a nice walk or do whatever your peaceful thing is.
Cheers and goodluck,