Decluttering is a little like losing weight. No matter how well you deal with your problem in the beginning, it will keep coming back unless you maintain the same mindset that led you to tidy up in the first place.
With Christmas and New Year’s parties over you are likely to now have your home back to yourselves – and in the spirit that New Year brings of starting the year as a ‘better you’, you may well have spent time tidying up and decluttering your home. If you like the feeling that comes from having a more minimalist home that is free of mess, here are some tips on how to keep it that way so that you never have to have another moment of panic as you view a home that looks like a bomb has hit it!
This step refers to simply keeping things the way they are by tossing junk when you realise you don’t need it, instead of stashing it in a pile that needs to be sorted over and over. Read your post as soon as it arrives and immediately bin it, shred it, or deal with it and then put it into your filing cabinet. There is no excuse for papers to be lying all over the floor, making it impossible to find them when you actually need them.
When you buy something from the shops, put it where it is going to be kept immediately instead of setting bags on the floor and table. After the washing comes out of the tumble drier or off the line, fold it and put it away immediately in the proper rooms and drawers. And, of course, when you are getting ready for bed put your earrings, necklaces and rings away in your Little Books rather than lying around in the bathroom or on your dressing table. This all helps to save time too as, if you know where you’ve put something then you’ll know where to find it later. As we say at Little Shop Of, “Better to look at something, than for something.” Then, when you have five spare minutes, use it to tidy and clean up anything lying around. This is how you keep mess from forming again.
In addition to your regular maintenance, it is important to declutter on a regular basis. You can decide to have a serious decluttering day every three months, every six months, or just whenever your home starts looking more like a tip! Make it a serious appointment and tidy your home from top to bottom, giving yourself another clean slate to work with.
Stop Buying Unnecessary Things
One of the biggest ways you can stop clutter in its tracks is to stop buying unnecessary things. By only allowing what you need to enter your home, you will cut down on the number of items you need to clear out later. Before you buy an item, think about whether you really need it, or if it is something you will regret at a later point in time. As William Morris once said, “Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Wise words indeed!
Get Everyone on Board
You can’t conquer clutter alone, unless you live alone. If you are part of a family who lives together, or have roommates of any kind, you will need to make everyone a part of the decluttering team. Talk to everyone about your wishes to maintain a junk-free haven, and talk about the many benefits of living in a more minimalist way than you have been. Let the other household members know that everyone’s efforts will benefit everyone else, and that you expect cooperation and teamwork.
Decluttering is only half of the solution. In order to maintain a beautiful home, you will need to take steps to keep it that way after the original clean sweep. Use these tips to keep your home free of clutter for 2018 and years to come.