Is your stuff getting heavy? Maybe it’s time to de-clutter!
By “heavy”, of course I don’t mean “weighs a lot”. We’re talking about clutter! When you look around, do you get the overwhelming feeling of not being in control? Do you have piles of stuff around the place, and you’re really not sure what is in them? Do you know that you really should tidy up, but the size of the job is getting you down?
You are not alone! We’ve all seen those programmes on telly about the super hoarders, and the good news is that they are the extremes. The reality is that even the most organised amongst us, have piles of crap that we have been meaning to get to. It’s all about the spectrum, and it’s all about how we like to live. One person’s lovely warm piles of momentos is another person’s nightmare. If you are finding that your lovely warm piles of momentos are starting to look at you with slightly aggressive slanty sideways eyes, it might be time to consider moving some of it one to a more appreciative home. Or recycling bin. Or rubbish bin.
Anyone can de-clutter.
In fact, Superhero in Disguise does it professionally.
The following are 7 steps that you can take, to de-clutter your home and (according to some theories) your life.
7 Steps to de-clutter your home
- Keep it simple. Choose just one area to tackle at a time. It’s really tempting to try and do it all at once, but what you are likely to find is that you become despondent over the size of the task, and give up. This will just contribute to a general feeling of being overwhelmed. I would suggest that you choose an area to start with that you use a lot, and is relatively small. You might choose the laundry, or a bathroom, or if you want to do the kitchen, perhaps just start with the pantry cupboard.
- Take out the rubbish. Have plastic bags on hand, and just remove everything that is rubbish. Packaging (that you probably thought still had stuff in it) is a common offender, as is newspapers, junk mail, and old paperwork. You will likely be surprised by how much rubbish you have in such a small space.
- Clear your space. Take everything substantial out of the room that can be easily moved, that you know you will want to keep. By this I mean chairs, tools, plants – anything that feels as if it is hampering your ability to move in the space easily. If the room has plenty of space, you might choose to stack it all in a corner, but it really is best to remove as much as you can.
- Consolidate. Now you’re still probably surrounded by a bunch of stuff. The next step is to consolidate. By this I mean, if you have three, either combine or throw away/set aside for eBay/recycle/re-gift. A classic example of this can be found in many bathrooms. How many bottles of shampoo do you have on the go? How many bottles of shampoo that are exactly the same do you have on the go? If it’s more than one, fill up the one you are using now with the dregs of the others, and then (this is the important part), put the empty shampoo bottles into your recycling bin. Another classic example is supermarket bags. How many of these are you actually likely to use before you get more from the supermarket? For most of us, not more than one supermarket bag can actually hold. Put all of the rest into your recycling bin. Trust me, there are plenty more out there if you need them – and let’s face it – you probably also have a whole bunch of reusable bags as well.
- Allocate space. Have you noticed that the space you are in has a primary use? If you are in your bathroom, it’s function will be to clean you, make you look presentable, and perhaps to help you maintain your good health. For that reason it will have body cleaning products (shampoo, soap, toothpaste etc), beauty or maintenance products (make-up, shaving equipment, a hairdryer etc) and perhaps a first aid kit. Have a think about what the functions are for the space that you are in, and then decide on where those functions happen. All of the products or equipment associated with each function should be in the area that you need it, and only in that area. So, if you are in your laundry, your cleaning products should all be in the same place – not in two or three different storage spaces.
- Clean. In order for you to clean your surfaces, which feels absolutely amazing by the way, you need to clear those surfaces. Now that you have allocated spaces, take everything out of those spaces, clean the surfaces, and then put everything that should be there within easy reach. If there are things that you use only occasionally, put them at the back. For those things that you use all of the time, have them within easy sight and reach.
- Restore. You still have all of those big things either in the corner of the room, or out in the hallway. At this stage, you should have clear, clean and shiny surfaces around you, and you will notice a big difference about how you feel in that room now. You should start by bringing in those things that are most important in that space. When you bring things back in, pause and think about how it makes you feel to increase the “stuff” in there. If you get to a point where the space feels like it is again too cluttered, think about whether you really DO need that extra thing. Chances are, you don’t. At this point, it might be wise to consider what else you can do with that extra clutter. You don’t want to have to de-clutter too often!
Here is an example of a laundry that I have recently de-cluttered and cleaned. I have included a couple of before and after shots. The client is delighted with the result, and hopefully my amateur iPhone shots will give you an idea of the different feel of the room now. I’ll start with some before, and then after shots. If you would like to book in your Superhero to de-clutter your life, CLICK HERE to get in touch, or CLICK HERE to book a time. Either way, let me know if you have questions or comments about this post.