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Get on top of your clutter

You might find these top 10 tips helpful for clearing your clutter 

  1. Clean before you clear your clutter.
    Dirt is different from clutter. Cleaning away the dust and grime first lets you see the clutter clearly, and stops the clearing from being such a dusty job.

  2. Never attempt clutter clearing when you're angry.
    Strong emotions get in the way of thinking clearly. To clear clutter you need an objective eye (which is one reason why it's useful to have a coach).

  3. Start with the small stuff.
    To get past the feeling of overwhelm, start with your junk drawer - we all have at least one. You'll feel great when it's done! And remembering that feeling will inspire you to move on to the bigger stuff.

  4. Don't be too hard on yourself
    It may take two or even three sweeps to clear the clutter. But do put a time limit on it.

  5. Clear out anything not used or loved
    Under normal circumstances, if you have not used an item in the past year, then you will not use it again.

  6. Set yourself a time limit
    This is a great tip for dealing with anything that's unfinished or needing repair. Set yourself a period of time - maybe six months - to get it finished. If by then it's still unfinished, it has to go!

  7. Don't put up with other people's clutter
    We've all fallen for this one! Looking after other people's belongings is fine but only for an agreed period of time.

  8. Recycle stuff that's too good to throw out
    It's very difficult for most of us to simply throw something away - so recycle it to friends, hospitals, schools or charities who will actually use it.

  9. Keep the balance - one in, one out
    Once you've cleared, how do you maintain that clutter free state? Make a rule that you clear space for whatever you bring into your home by clearing out something else. So when you buy a book, for example, you have to get rid of one you have already.

  10. Get started!
    The moment you start, changes will occur. You'll feel lighter and empowered to continue. Other members of your household will be motivated to clear their clutter. Your home will feel the benefits and appear full of positive energy.

Visitors comments

Angry Cleaning Comments By: Anon on 2005-06-27
On your second tip, you said that de-cluttering while angry is not good.

I read in one of those housekeeping magazines that being angry while de-cluttering is helpful because it makes you less sentimental.

I guess it depends on the person....

De-cluttering before cleaning! Comments By: Janet on 2005-07-06
This is a great article, but I disagree with tip #1 - cleaning before de-cluttering. I think it's better to de-clutter BEFORE cleaning. Until the clutter is cleared away, it's hard to really polish furniture, vacuum, etc., because the table tops and floors are covered with too much stuff! Once the clutter is gone, then the cleaning is not only easier, but the results look so much better!
Big Stuff First! Comments By: Infomaniac on 2006-01-25
Starting with the "big" cluttering items first makes for a quicker change and less procrastination. Some of us could take hours clearing out a junk drawer and still have large boxes, etc., clogging the passageways and rooms, making it look to other people like we have made no progress at all.

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