I failed to write a blog entry for two days as I was busy with my never-ending decluttering work. It has been a slow process and I am not anywhere near the finish line! But a few months ago, I was able to get rid of tons of documents and old bills that have just been sitting around and have managed to reduce the clutter in my office by more than half.
I know I work best when there is a deadline. This time, I have three weeks left – two weeks to purge, reorganize and relocate stuff in order to convert my office into a third bedroom (which was its original purpose anyway), and a week to reorganize our pantry. I gained a stepson and I’d like him to have a comfortable space whenever he visits which is like a maximum of two times in a year and two months at any given time. Other than those times, it should serve as a scaled down office.
Most of the remaining items are in the ground floor storage room and on the roof deck. The last two days were spent on the latter with the aid of someone I occasionally hire to help out in the house. She went home with loads of toys, clothes, bags and some small appliances that I told her she can open a second-hand store!
Though I am no expert in decluttering, here are some guidelines that I practice :
- Go from room to room. Instead of taking a huge task right away, I work on one room at a time. And once that’s done, I make sure to keep it that way and not bring in unnecessary clutter again.
- Have mini decluttering sessions at least once a month. Doing it once or twice a year makes the task too daunting. A day or two every month makes it more manageable.
- You’ve unearthed that nice looking dress that you have not even seen for the last three years? Do not even think about keeping it again. That goes for everything else. If you haven’t seen it or used it for two years (or even one), that means you never really needed it and you need to just dispose of them completely.
- Organize and label things properly so they’re easier to find.
- Mementos from past relationships belong to the past and the trash. Throw them away.
- Anything you can find on the internet need not have duplicates like home and fashion magazines.
- Don’t regret parting with things if they do not serve you any purpose. Only keep what is essential.
- Don’t be ashamed to sell your excess belongings. You’ve spent for them and if they still look good and can serve someone else’s purpose, why not make money out of them? Or, you can always give them away for free!
- Do not bring in any more clutter into the house. For me, it means avoiding unnecessary shopping. Unless it was something I absolutely needed, I didn’t buy it. This applied to household items, clothes, bags, shoes, accessories.
The more open spaces I see in our home, the more I feel there is positive energy flowing thru it. And it gives me a sense of being light, akin to unburdening emotional and physical stress. And for me, this is an essential part of my goal to transition to a simpler life where I am keeping only the things that make me happy.