The 10 Rules of Decluttering
Clutter in your HomeSpace is basically anything that you don’t use, don’t like or don’t have space for. When people face off with their clutter, they often lose. I’ve found that adhering to some clear rules helps. When you change your approach to de-cluttering with these rules, it is a complete game-changer. And if you do this part of the process thoroughly you will not need to do it again. Simple!
Here are the 10 rules that will help you conquer clutter once and for all:
- Start your de-clutter day early in the morning as you take on each room. Allow one day to de-clutter each room.
- Before you start, take a moment to create a comfortable vibe: light a scented candle, put on your favorite music (not too loud) or fix a comforting cup of coffee or tea. Set aside the time needed to work through this process without being interrupted by your job, friends or family.
- De-cluttering your HomeSpace by categories specific to the various rooms. For example in the bedroom, you would sort categories into clothes, books and bedding. In the kitchen you would sort electrical appliances, cleaning products, utensils and food products. Specific categories for each room may need adjusting if, for example, you keep vitamins and medical supplies in the kitchen as opposed to the bathroom. Just make sure every category is addressed.
- Gather all items in that category from other areas in your HomeSpace before you start to sort. This includes the attic, basement and storage. For example, people often keep items like clothes stored in the bedroom as well as the garage, basement and attic. Getting them all together in one place makes it easier to see exactly what you have and what needs to be edited.
- Lay out all items from that category on a flat surface, such as the floor, bed or counter. For categories where there are a lot of items create sub-categories. Clothing can be divided into shirts, t-shirts, casual pants, dress pants, shoes, bags, etc. Work through one sub-category at a time.
- Deal with each room and the categories belonging in that room in one go. You may think it’s a lot, and for some people it will be. This only works if you tackle it in large chunks, so as we say in Australia, “Go for Gold!”
- Take time to think if the item you are deciding to keep has vibe value. As you sort through the items in each category ask yourself, “Does this item help raise my vibe?” In other words, does it have ‘vibe value’ and is it an item I use, love or need. Remember the items in your home are there to make you feel good and help you connect with the vibe or feeling of the life you really want to be living.
- Consider what you will keep rather than what you will discard. Going through this process in a peaceful environment will allow you to connect with your intuition and help you gauge whether the item is serving you and your future LifeVision. The goal is to have fewer, more meaningful things.
- Have garbage bags on hand and get ready to discard. Be tough with yourself, folks. If you haven’t worn that piece of clothing you bought a year ago or haven’t read the book you bought two years ago, chances are you won’t wear it and you won’t read it. It’s time to let it go. Remember, keep only the items you really feel connected to, use daily or need (like a passport). You will be amazed at how much stuff you discard.
- Donate, recycle or trash the items you are discarding. Research where your local donation charity is. Keep in mind that many places offer a tax deduction on items like furnishing and clothes. Save any items you believe you need to store until the end so you can go back and review the items again. I find that once I get on a roll it becomes easier and incredibly satisfying to let things go.
If you have trouble deciding on a particular item, imagine you are moving overseas to live and you can only take the things you really love, just a small amount of what you have now in your home. That’s what I had to do when I moved to the U.S. in 1999, and though it was tough, it forced me to consider what I really needed to keep. This exercise will help you to decide what’s really important to you. Even though you are not moving overseas, you are moving into a new chapter of your life. Remember, when it doubt throw it out (that is donate, recycle or trash it). Honestly, the result is worth it.
DO NOT start putting things away until you have gone through all the items in each category you have brought together to sort.
For many people de-cluttering will have an incredible effect on the way they see their HomeSpace and their life straight away. You will be amazed at how much stuff comes out of your HomeSpace. Losing large amounts of clutter is like when people on television lose a huge amount of weight. The results are often life changing.