A cluttered house doesn’t just happen over night. It takes years!! So how can you possibly expect to be able to declutter it in a week? Or a month? It’s going to take a long time! You can’t just snap your fingers and have it done! Wouldn’t that be great??
Decluttering isn’t something you can tick off a ‘to do’ list. It’s a process!
If you are trying to do a huge job you really need to break it down and do a little bit, often!
Try my Dive-4-5 trick.
Here’s how it works:
Grab a bag for things to donate, and a bag for garbage. Then open four drawers, or pull out four bins, or open four cupboards – it helps if they are side by side. Peak around a little to get a feel for what’s in the spaces. Set a five minute timer, then dive in! Try to get rid of any garbage, or anything that doesn’t belong, and pull out as many things as you can that you really don’t need or use or any more. The key is to act fast and try not to think too hard.
It won’t be an overly thorough process, but the point is just to do this each day – it’s only 5 minutes! Eventually you will come back to the same space again and you can go through it differently, or use the five minutes to quickly organize some of the stuff.
I like to go through four different spaces at once because I love categorizing stuff as I go. If I am going through one bin or space at a time I end up with a bunch of piles around me of different types of stuff and it takes way more than five minutes to deal with it. But having four things open or out at once, I can just categorize right into the four spaces – it might be more of a general categorization than I’d like, but it will still be better than it was. I also love going through multiple spaces at once because then I don’t have time to get bogged down with the little “hmm…I have no clue where this could go” moments – it’s just about spotting quick and easy things to get out of the house! Sometimes just regularly seeing your clutter reminds you of what you have and where it is. That way, you can remember to use it…because ultimately that’s probably why you kept whatever it is in the first place!
This process is not about pulling out a bin and dumping the contents and going through everything. This is truly a look into the space, pull out what doesn’t belong, and get rid of what you don’t need. It’s like diving into a pool. You can’t be under water for long, you need to come up for air. So dive in quick, then get out!
It’s also a slightly less messy way to declutter some of your spaces. You don’t need to create a big mess before it gets better. All you may be doing is pulling out bins that you need to put a lid back on and put away at the end of the timer. You already have your donate bin and garbage bag ready. (Pro tip: toss your donate bin right into your car after the timer goes off! Then it doesn’t even take up space in your house afterward!!)
Have fun diving!
Love this. It really helps get in the mindset of ongoing upkeep in a gentle, less anxiety ridden way.
Thanks for sharing! There’s already too much going on in life causing anxiety – I just try to focus on little steps. Eventually it will all work out!