Your house can sometimes feel like it’s been turned upside down during Christmas, thanks to decorations, presents and guests. That’s why now is a better time than ever to declutter your home before you settle down for the holidays
The new year sees a fresh start and people set themselves new goals or resolutions for the new year ahead. The saying ‘a clear space, a clear mind’ couldn’t be more appropriate coming into the new year! If you want a new change in your life, then a clear and tidy house will be your first step on the way.
If, like a magpie, you love to collect things, it’s shocking when suddenly out of nowhere, you have cupboards bursting with unused items. The Christmas period and the new year is the best time to face the music and declutter your home for good. Tips on decluttering Firstly, it’s vital that you declutter with a plan. It’s not a good idea to suddenly launch into a whirlwind of sorting and emptying cupboards; you’ll only end up with a messy floor covered in piles of stuff, and you won’t be able to find your way out of the room! Instead of getting yourself into a spin, take some time to write out a solid plan.
Think about which parts of your home you want to declutter. It’s not just your living room, kitchen, bedroom or bathroom that might need a look. Spare bedrooms and studies can sometimes find themselves used as a ‘dumping ground’ when they could be used for something more practical than storage. Think of all those secret messy places such as the junk drawer, the linen cupboard, toy boxes and even the garage or loft.
For each room you have established needs decluttering, set yourself a target. Maybe you have received half a dozen cheese knife sets from Christmases gone by, or your wardrobe is piled high with clothes you bought in the sale but haven’t worn since. It will be satisfying every time you tick things off your list, and you will be more organised too.
When decluttering, many people don’t know what to do with the goods that they’ve found throughout the house. A good idea is to sort everything into piles for where it will be going. There are a few things you can do with your unwanted goods and sorting them into piles will help you to organise clutter.
Donate items that still serve a purpose, but that you never touch. If you don’t want it, someone else might. Give your old belongings to a charity shop, it’s a bonus to be able to help people at the same time. The charity shop is also a great place for donating any unwanted Christmas presents you may receive this year, rather than leaving them to gather dust!
For items that are too good to give away, why not sell them? Selling your unwanted goods is easier than ever thanks to websites such as eBay, Gumtree, Facebook and Shpock, as well as car boot sales. There are loads of collectors who are willing to pay a lot of money for certain magazines, vinyl’s, LPs, antiques etc – you may well be sitting on a small fortune!
For any items to be thrown away, put them directly into a bin bag, making sure to recycle waste wherever you can. Don’t worry if you have any items which you are not sure about, or you feel sentiment towards. Put these in a big box put to one side and come back to them in a few months’ time with a clear head. If you find yourself undecided, ask yourself the same questions: ‘When did I last use this?’, ‘Will I use it again?’ and don’t feel guilt for giving something away!
It’s important that you don’t give yourself unrealistic targets, it’s unlikely you will declutter your house top to bottom in one day. Set yourself daily goals of which rooms and cupboards you’d like to declutter. By setting small and achievable goals, you’ll be able to see progress and keep up your positivity. When you have decluttered Congratulations, you have managed to transform your home into a clear and clutter-free relaxing space! It’s important that your home remains clutter-free for good, and it is easier than you think. Adopting the ‘1-in 1-out’ philosophy is a great start. If you buy a new pair of jeans, think about donating one of your original pairs to charity. Doing this for everything new thing you buy will help prevent a build-up of clutter again.
Storage boxes, poufs and wicker baskets are great for storage whilst also adding some life into a room. Folders are useful to organise important documents and bills; you can label them into different categories so everything is easy to find.
If you find yourself with a sudden urge to buy something you’ve seen online or in a shop window, instead of impulse buying, write a monthly ‘wish-list’ and wait until payday before deciding to buy it. During this time, you may have decided that you don’t actually need it.