According to one recent study, more than half (54%) of all Americans say they’re overwhelmed with the amount of clutter they have in their homes and offices. Yet, 78% say they don’t know what to do about the problem, so they allow the mess to build.
If you’ve let clutter accumulate, you know that the issue can affect both your physical and emotional health. Clutter is not only difficult to maneuver and clean around, but it can also leave you feeling stressed, anxious, and even depressed.
Thankfully, there are a few easy ways to declutter your home and reclaim your space. Today, we’re sharing five simple tips to help you get started.
1. Tackle Visible Items First
There’s no need to do a deep clean of the attic or basement closet until you’ve taken care of all the visible clutter in your home.
Walk room to room around your house with a trash bag, and start by tossing all of the obvious waste. From empty water bottles on the nightstand to packaging in the office, you may be surprised at how many bits and pieces you can collect as you go.
The goal of this first step is to simply reduce the volume of clutter you have to tackle. You aren’t trying to organize anything at this juncture or even make sense of the remaining items you see. Just get rid of anything that you know you aren’t using or don’t need anymore.
Some of the most common types of trash you’ll find include:
- Junk mail
- Expired coupons
- Envelopes, mailers, and packages
- Scrap paper
Put them in the bag, take them to the dumpster, and get ready to work on the next step!
2. Make Three Piles
When it’s time to declutter your space, most experts agree that an effective way to start is by making three separate piles:
- Give away
The premise of this step is simple. Start building the piles in a central location within your home, such as the living room. As you go from one room to the next, look at the items of clutter you see.
At first, you’ll notice many items that just need to be put back into their proper spots. For instance, the clean silverware in the sink needs to be put away in the kitchen drawer, and the random socks in the laundry room need to be paired and stashed in the closet.
However, once all of the essentials are where they belong, look at what remains. Instead of leaving those unwanted items hanging around, take them to the piles. Sort them accordingly, trying to make the “keep” pile as small as possible.
As you divide and conquer, you may find that you have a hard time letting certain items go. This is especially the case for items you have an emotional attachment to, such as that sweatshirt you wore in college (and never since) or the cracked mugs you bought on your honeymoon.
Before tossing or donating those items, take a picture so you can preserve the memory forever. You can also consider having a garage sale and inviting your community to come shop your stuff! This can be a great way to sell your clothes, baby gear, and other items you no longer need.
3. Get Into Storage
It’s relatively easy to clean your home when you focus on the visible areas only. However, one common mistake that many homeowners make is shoving clutter into a drawer or cabinet instead of actively dealing with it.
It can be hard to organize and tidy up these smaller spaces, but this is a step you can’t afford to skip. Start by taking a close look at the hidden spots in your bathroom, kitchen, bedroom dressers, and home office furniture.
Working on one room at a time, take all of the items out of those spaces first. Then, before you put each one back, ask yourself if it can go into any of the piles you created in Step 2. Instead of putting everything back in the same spot it was before, consider investing in small accessories like drawer organizers or shelf spacers to create a sense of order.
4. Pace Yourself
Most of us have been here at least once: You get in over your head in a cleaning spree and suddenly, your space looks ten times worse than it did before. There are loose articles of clothing all over the closet, every single toiletry you own is on the bathroom floor, and your bedroom looks like a tornado cut right through it.
When this happens, it’s easy to get frustrated with the whole task and simply stop. Yet, that only exacerbates the clutter challenge! Before you start cleaning another space, take a few minutes or even a whole day to catch your breath. You don’t have to transform your home in just a few hours.
In fact, you’ll do a more thorough and complete job if you give yourself time and grace. Stop when you need to, go outside to recharge, and only start again when you’re feeling energized and ready.
5. Clean Your Floors
Finally, when everything has found a spot and you’ve reduced your clutter, don’t forget to sweep, mop, or vacuum your floors!
This put the finishing touch on your cleaning task and is evidence of a job well done. You’ll also discover that you have lots more floor space to enjoy once everything is off the ground and put away!
Declutter Your Home With Ease
The five tips above can help you declutter your home, one step at a time. Everyday life can sneak up on you and make daily cleaning hard to do, so these are a great way to get back on track!
However, you might wonder what to do if you’re way over your head with clutter. In this case, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team. At ZBM, Inc., we specialize in a range of maintenance and cleaning services, including hoarding cleanup.
We’re proud to service all of Dodge and Jefferson counties, including all Watertown suburbs. To learn more or request a quote, contact us today!