Are you wanting to know how to declutter, but don’t know where to begin? You are not alone! The thought of decluttering can be very intimidating. Get ready to eliminate the overwhelm once you learn how to declutter your home with these easy and actionable tips!
Clutter. We ALL have it! Whether it is a pile of papers, or shoes cluttering an entrance, or kitchen countertops that are piled high with stuff. There is probably clutter gathering in some space of your home.
And, tackling the clutter is no easy feat. Especially if you have collected a lot of things through out the years. It’s enough to make us throw our hands in the air, and just give up. Am I right? Don’t worry, I got you!
I am here to tell you that you can absolutely get started decluttering your home in an easy and manageable way. And, not feel completely overwhelmed by the clutter!
What’s The Best Way To Declutter?
Before we get started, I want to take the time to emphasize something that I think is very important when it comes to learning how to declutter your home. And, that is decluttering is not organizing.
I know, I know, but bear with me on this. I believe that one of the sources of overwhelm surrounding decluttering your home is that you feel you have to declutter and organize simultaneously. And my response to that is NOPE you sure don’t! In fact, I would encourage you to not even think about organizing while decluttering. I know…I am such a rebel right?
In my experience with clutter, because believe me when I say that I have plenty. It piles up, and piles up, and then you are embarrassed and depressed and paralyzed by the stuff.
You know that you need to get rid of things, and get organized. But, oh my gosh it feels so insurmountable why even bother? Any of this sound or feel familiar?
That is why you need to focus on the task at hand. And, feel free to take it slow! By simply focusing on decluttering, and nothing else, this task will be so much easier.
It is also best to take it one step at a time. Depending on how much clutter you have, this can be by going room by room or even section by section. The point is to pick a spot, and stick with it until it is clutter free. Those immediate results will have you feeling amazing, and like you can breathe again in your own home. Who doesn’t love that feeling?
I know that this sounds super simple, but when you are completely overwhelmed by the mess, or even if you are not. The best way to declutter your home is by one piece, and one space at a time.
How Do I Start Decluttering?
Now that you know that you will be taking this step by step, you may be wondering how to start decluttering.
First things first, you can grab your FREE copy of the decluttering checklist at the bottom of this post. It is super helpful with keeping track of what to go through in each room.
Next, pick your room, or space, or countertop. Wherever you want to start. Take the time to truly look at the area, and think about what is absolutely necessary for you in this space.
For instance, if you are starting with a kitchen countertop, think about what truly needs to be on the countertop. Chances are at least 80% of what is currently on there does not need to be on there. I’m looking at you endless stack of papers.
Items you need to start decluttering:
- Decluttering Your Home Checklist – Grab your FREE copy at the bottom of this post, or read more about the Declutter Checklist.
- Put Away– Use a basket for any items that you want to keep, but don’t belong in the space where you are working.
It is also super important to place the items in the basket, and not take them to another room until you are finished in the space that you are currently working. When you run around from room to room you become easily distracted. And, it can feel like it takes forever to accomplish very little. That is why you need to focus on the task you are doing right now.
- Donate – Use a basket for any items that can be donated.
This is for any items that can be donated to a charitable organization, or a friend or family member that you know could use these items. There are probably plenty of things that have been cluttering up your space for awhile that would be wonderful additions to someone else’s home.
- Trash – Keep a trash bag handy to toss in anything that is considered trash.
A note about what to keep.
Deciding what items to keep can be tricky. It is extremely important that you focus only on items that you truly need. Some important questions to ask yourself are:
- Have I used this item in the past 6 months?
- Do I have more than one of this thing?
- Is it broken or are parts missing?
- Do I really truly love this item, and use it regularly?
Now it is time to get started. Grab the first thing you see, and put it into one of the receptacles. Move on to the next thing. Remember, I am cheering you on every step of the way!
How To Declutter Sentimental Items
Let’s take a moment to discuss sentimental items. Because this can be a super tough area to address when it comes to clutter.
If you have received a gift from someone, and you are only keeping it out of guilt…let it go! The same can be said for items that have been passed down to you as well.
Because here is the thing. It is doing nothing but weighing you down. It is not bringing you peace or joy or filling your soul in any way. In fact it is doing the opposite!
So, pass it along to someone who will love or use that thing. That item will bring them so much joy. And, seriously don’t feel guilty for one second about clearing the clutter that is weighing you down, and overwhelming YOU.
And, a note to the mamas with littles who bring home a lot of art and crafts. I KNOW it is so tough to toss anything. I mean it is all so cute, and precious, and we want to keep it forever and ever. Am I right?
My top tip for this is to take pictures of the art that you love. And, then toss it. You can then take those pictures and create a true masterpiece in the way of a hard bound coffee table book, a calendar, or whatever your heart desires.
PS I am not saying to throw away everything here. If there is truly something that is super duper precious that you want to keep, then please do so. We are more talking about the everyday arts and crafts type things that can contribute to a lot of clutter.
How To Declutter Room By Room
Before you get started make sure that you have your FREE copy of the Decluttering Your Home Checklist. (You can grab your copy at the bottom of this post.) This will be super helpful when moving room to room. And, also make sure that you have your baskets and trash bag ready too.
My best suggestion for decluttering your kitchen is to go zone by zone. Start by clearing your counter tops. Next, you will go through your cabinets, drawers, refrigerator, under your kitchen sink, and your pantry.
Assess what you truly need to keep in these areas. And remember, you are not organizing at this point. You are strictly decluttering. Focus on one thing at a time to achieve maximum results in a short time.
Here are a few kitchen decluttering tips to keep in mind:
- Remove duplicates of any utensils.
- Discard any broken items, cleaning solutions that you no longer use, or expired food.
- Toss any food containers that cannot be matched with lids, or lids that no longer go with containers.
- Donate any extra dishes, cups, mugs, and utensils that you truly do not need.
- Toss any food that is expired or stale in the trash.
- If there are any foods that are not expired, but your family will not eat, consider donating to a food bank.
- Do you keep plastic grocery bags in your pantry? Chances are you have more than you actually need. Place extras in recycling.
As you go through the clutter put things back where they belong. Be careful with the kitchen counters, and only place on there what you use daily.
Finally, take any of the items that are in your put away bin, and put them in the appropriate room in your house where they belong.
When you feel you are ready to get this space organized, be sure to check out these easy kitchen organization ideas.
- Laundry Room
The laundry room is another place that can become a catchall for clutter. Lonely socks missing their other half anyone? Clothes pins and safety pins for days. I feel you!
Honestly, this is one of the easiest rooms. It is pretty self explanatory what you actually need in this room. So, toss or donate what can go.
PS You don’t need 3 fabric softeners. And, you can toss the lonely socks. We both know you aren’t going to find their counterpart. Let it go mama. I am convinced that dryers eat socks, so it is not your fault. 😉
If you have any items in your put away bin that made their way into the laundry room that don’t belong. Go place them where they should be now.
This can be one of those areas that piles up with clutter very quickly. And, the tricky part is that it can be really easy to hide it too. But, even though you may have some great sneaky storage…we both know the clutter is there.
Go though your medicine cabinets, drawers, shelves, and countertops and remove any medicine, toiletries, and skin care products that are expired or you no longer use.
Another area to address is your makeup products as well. When you feel you are ready to take it to the next level be sure to check out how to organize your makeup.
Also, be sure to toss any towels that have holes, and consider donating any extras that you don’t truly need.
Go through your put away basket, and return items to rooms where they belong if needed.
One of the first things to tackle before you actually get started is to make the beds. A made bed will just make you feel better. Having blankets strewn about looks cluttered, and you want to find calm where you can get it.
Now you can move onto your bed side tables. Clear anything off of the tops, and go through the drawers. If you are like me there are probably a stack of books and a bajillion hand lotion bottles that need to be removed right about now.
Next, you will move onto the dressers. Clear off the tops of the dressers, and go through the drawers. Get rid of or donate any clothing that you no longer need. Place anything you are keeping back where it belongs.
Another area that you may need to tackle is under the bed. This can be breeding ground for a ton of clutter. Pull everything out, and take the time to assess what you truly need to keep.
Return any items that are in your put away bin to their appropriate homes.
- Living Room
When it comes to decluttering your home the living room can be a major catch all for clutter since it receives the most use. Somehow all the random things end up there. And, there typically is not a lot of hidden storage solutions in the living room either.
Start by clearing shelves and tables of any clutter. Then, move on to your entertainment center. Discard any electronics, remotes, DVDs, and books that you no longer use.
Also, if you have shelves they can tend to fill with knick knacks. Take the time to only keep what you truly need, and that you love. These items can clutter up a space quickly, and they also get dusty super quick. So think of it as your way of freeing up cleaning time too. 😉
Fold any blankets, and make sure that you find a home for anything you keep.
Return any items in your put away basket to where they belong.
- Playroom or Toy Area
This can be another massive spot for a ton of clutter. Take the time to truly assess what your kids actually need and play with consistently.
Do a quick sweep and grab any items that are in the toy room that do not belong there, and place them in your put away basket.
Go through all shelves, baskets, and toy boxes in the room.
Dispose of any toys or games that are missing pieces or are broken. Also, be sure to go through any books that are damaged to give them a toss too.
Donate any gently used toys, plushies, dolls, and stuffies that your children no longer use.
Now go through your put away basket, and take the items to the spaces where they belong.
When learning how to declutter your home, closets can be one of the most intimidating areas. But, do not let this one overwhelm you! You are not organizing your closet right now. You are simply decluttering your clothes.
First things first. Toss any clothing that needs to be cleaned into the hamper.
Next it is time to tackle the clothing, shoes, and accessories.
When going through these items it works much smoother if you go through all like clothing in sections. For instance, it is easier to go through all of your sweaters at once, or your jeans at once, to determine which ones you actually need to keep.
Remove any torn or faded clothing and place in your garbage bag.
Now, take a deep breath for the donating part! I know this one can be super tough. Remember to breathe, and I am right behind you cheering you on!
Here are some questions to ask yourself when deciding what clothing to keep:
- Have you worn the item in the last 6 months?
- Do you truly love the way you feel when you wear the item?
- Does the item fit? – I know this one is tough, but seriously just let it go. You will feel better, and just think. When you lose the weight, you can go buy something new instead. 😉
- Do you have multiples of the similar item? For instance 5 similar black tops.
Once you have gone through all of your clothing, be sure to put everything back in the closet. And check your put away bin, and put things in their proper space.
- Entryway and Mudroom
The entryway and mudroom are another place that can gather a lot of clutter.
One of the number one things that pile up are the shoes. My best solution is to get a basket specifically for shoes, and everyone’s shoes go into it. This has been a total game changer in our home.
Next go though any table tops, or baskets, or cubbies and gather anything that doesn’t belong. If you have a closet in this space, be sure to declutter there too.
Take the time to go through your put away basket, and place the random items back where they belong.
When decluttering your home, the office can be an often overlooked space because it is super easy to simply close the door. And, not a lot of people are visiting the office. So, it’s easy to have the whole out of sight out of mind approach.
However the office can be overrun with clutter! And, frankly speaking. It is not super fun trying to pay bills, or send an email, while doing a balancing act on top of a bunch of papers.
Be sure to grab anything that doesn’t belong, and place it in the put away basket.
Go through your desk top, and drawers and remove any broken items. If you have a ton of extra office supplies consider donating them to your local school, or the school that your children attend. Your child’s teacher could probably use them!
Now is the time to go through all of the papers too. Be sure to shred any documents that you no longer need that contain any of your personal information. If you feel ready to get your office organized, then these desk organization ideas can help!
Check your put away basket, and put any items back where they belong.
You Have Officially Decluttered Your Home
You now know exactly how to declutter your home. And, how to eliminate the overwhelm that can come with decluttering. You also have the tools that you need to get the job done quickly and efficiently!
Breathe that in for a moment, and just enjoy your clutter free space! Doesn’t it feel great!
And, don’t forget to grab your FREE decluttering checklist below.
SAVE IT FOR LATER