5 Quick Ways to Declutter

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Summary: We are all on the go; busy lives calls for busy time, often making us forget to take care of the home life or simply making room to do so.

Many studies have shown that a decluttered environment creates a more decluttered brain. Stress in your life can often be increased simply by your surroundings being, well, a mess. Think about this: is it less stressful to come home at the end of the day to a disorganized house with your things tossed about and “to-do’s” staring you in the face or is it less stressful to come home to a house where most everything is in its place and you can actually sit down on the couch or your bed without moving a pile of clothes?

I hope you choose the latter, because whether you realize it or not, clutter attracts more clutter and then eventually you’re faced with a project so big that you can’t bring yourself to tackle it and clean. Organizing and cleaning in small increments, rather than spending a whole weekend doing so, can make the process seem considerably less overwhelming as well as more immediately rewarding and satisfying.
Here are five quick ways to declutter your life and find a sense of peace and accomplishment:
  1. Clean out your car. Our vehicles are often the most neglected when it comes to cleaning up since we’re in and out of them, then on to the next thing. Most people wait until an event like picking their parents up from the airport to scramble and throw everything out. Grab a trash bag, a bag for items that should go elsewhere, and drive to a carwash with vacuums you can use. Once you’ve cleaned everything out and vacuumed up any smashed snacks from the carpet, you’ll feel a major sense of calm and accomplishment and it will have likely only taken you 10-15 minutes. 
  2. Clean out your medicine/bathroom cabinet. Let’s be honest, your bathroom cabinets and drawers are where medicine and products go to die. Pull everything out and while it will feel like a disaster at the moment, start sorting through everything. Toss out anything that has expired or that you haven’t used in months (or years…) and then when you put things back, be sure to organize them by type. Consider getting drawer organizers to keep things in their own sections. You’ll thank yourself later when you come down with a bad cold or your kid scrapes up their knee. 
  3. Bring all the toys to one place and organize them. Obviously this is just if you have children (or if you’re a crafter or have some other hobby that ends up all over the place), but it’s key to keeping your life a little more sane. Pick somewhere in the house where everything “belongs” and even get containers to put different types of toys or other items into. Stuffed animals all in one basket, legos in another, etc. and now your kids can see where things go, making it easier for them to clean up after themselves. 
  4. Go through the piles on your counter/desk. You know what I’m talking about - those piles of papers, magazines, and who knows what that you’ve collected in a certain spot thinking you’ll get to them eventually. Things you couldn’t bring yourself to toss because when you “have time” you’ll want to read them. Trust me, if you really wanted to read them, you would have made time by now. Go through those piles and start throwing papers into the recycle. If it’s a reminder of something you need to do, like making a doctor’s appointment or writing someone a thank you note, do it right then and there. Those tasks we avoid tend to take only a few minutes so set a timer and get it all done. 
  5. Pick up your bedroom. Your bedroom is a place of rest, but it’s hard to feel that way when you have things sitting on your dresser that don’t belong there and clothes and shoes strewn about the room. Set a time for ten minutes and start putting things where they belong. If you’re like me, you have clothes you wore for a couple hours and don’t need to be washed, but you don’t want to put them away either. Designate a hook behind your door for these things rather than tossing them on a chair on the floor.

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