Lifestyle DesignRural Living

How to Organize and Declutter Your Home in Small Steps

Does decluttering make you feel overwhelmed and frustrated?

I am in kind of a crazy time right now, we have our house up for sale.  So there are many tasks to make it more sellable.  One of the biggest things is decluttering all our personal “stuff.”  I think that it is the perfect opportunity to throw out a lot of junk.  But my partner, who has loved here longer, is having a much harder time.  To him the idea of removing all the things that are memorable to him is leaving him very emotional.

When you take small steps to declutter and organize your home, you can conquer the task much more easily.

Taking things really slowly and doing very small tasks at a time are very helping.  This helps us stay focused and allows time to deal with the emotions that comes with moving through the process.

Here are some steps we are taking to make this process easier:

Divide Things Up

Tackle only one room at a time. This will make your task appear much less daunting. Avoid moving on to the next room until you’ve completed the last one.

Try these tips for organizing and decluttering your home in small steps:

  1. Choose your starting point. Select a room that you can tackle in a day, rather than the most challenging one in the house. Once you’ve chosen your room, start early so you have as many daylight hours as possible to work on your cleaning and decluttering. We started in the living room because it had the least amount of stuff.
  2. Basic sort. Go through everything in your starting room and sort out items you no longer want. Everything that you touch in the room should go into one of four categories: Things you want to throw away, things you want to donate or sell, things that should remain where they are, and things that you want to keep but that are in the wrong room.
    • Use this sorting principle for every item in the room. When you’re finished, you should have four distinctive piles or areas in the room. Each item in the room will be in one of the four piles.
  3. Remove trash. Simply taking all the “throw away” stuff out of the room is going to make a very large dent. Keep in mind that personal paperwork should be shredded rather than simply put into the garbage.
  4. Remove donation items. Anything that you intend to sell, give away or donate should come out next. Store these items somewhere else in the house for now. Continue to add to this section from each room in your home until you’re ready to make one single donation or yard sale.
  5. Sort the “belongs elsewhere” section. Do not simply move these items into another room; otherwise you’ll need to sort them again. Create a box or container for each room for which you have items. Make sure that you definitely want to keep them so that you can transfer them into the right room without having to sort them again later.
  6. Organize what’s left. Now that you’ve removed large chunks of “stuff” from your room, you can organize everything that remains. When you’re only working with the things that are supposed to be in the room, decluttering and organizing becomes much simpler.
  7. Repeat this process. Continue steps 1-6 in each room until you’ve finished the whole house. When you handle one room at a time, the process is much simpler and less stressful.

Once you’ve finished organizing your house, take a few minutes each day to ensure everything you’ve used during the day is back in place so you can continue to enjoy your “new” clutter-free home.

Big tasks can seem overwhelming. Break your decluttering challenge into smaller increments and before you know it, your house will be clean and organized!

Once we have completed this process through the entire house, we will easily be able to prepare the house for showings with no stress at all.

PhotoCredit: Betsssssy

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