If you are new to the process of decluttering and organizing, this post is for you. Today, we will be talking about the initial tips to remove clutter in your home. After many years of organizing, I realized several similar issues from my very different clientele. By the time my clients come to me, they have dealt with the clutter on average 5-10 years. That's a long time! There were many similarities that happened to these people as a result of the clutter in their homes. Below are some ways that clutter affected them.
Six Side Effects of a Cluttered Home
- Anger toward themselves, the situation, and their family about the clutter. Visit our Overcoming Negative Talk to Clear the Clutter.
- Stressed about the clutter itself.
- Physically sick from the amount of pressure they put on themselves to get rid of the clutter.
- Depressed and helpless that they can't get out of their situation.
- Worried they will not be able to get rid of the clutter.
- Ashamed and embarrassed to show anyone else the clutter in their home.
These cluttered spaces became an issue in their lives. Their clutter created a physical and emotional barrier between themselves and their loved ones. Don’t believe it, read more here about 5 reasons to clear the clutter out of your life by Psychology Today. Are you convinced?
To remove the clutter and change this pattern, the individual who created the clutter needed to motivate themselves to get rid of the mess. He or she had to realize the importance of organizing first and foremost. They needed to recognize that change is not a “bad” thing and they could do it. Each person required getting to the point where they drew a line in the sand and said, “No more, I am going to change my habits and my space. I value myself and my space more than the way I am valuing it now.” This is and always will be the starting point to break the clutter habit. By removing this pattern, it will help with repairing their torn relationship because of the habit.
When they get to this point, they need to determine, precisely, what their goals are for their home. One goal could be to make their home a place where they could relax, rejuvenate, and spend time with family and friends.
They need to determine their specific goals for each room. It helps to clear the mind and think about where things need to go before taking any action. They need to be as accurate as possible and write down the goals on a piece of paper. Each room in their home would have its own goals. Ask yourself these questions to determine the purpose of the room.
Five Questions to ask to Determine the Purpose of a Room
- What do I want to change in this ______ space?
- How do I want to use this space? Family area, other employee space, etc...
- What works? What does not operate in this area?
- Where will I hold this ______ group? Where will I place my ________?
- Will this item be most effective in this area? Or, does another area work better?
What to do after you determine a room's purpose?
After they defogged their minds and had a clearer picture of the goals for each room, they then needed to write a to-do list to reach their goals for each space.
Try this: Place each task on a sticky note, stick them on a large paper or bulletin board labeled the space name. Be as accurate as possible on each task sticky note. After you have all the tasks on the sticky notes, rearrange them to put them in the most effective order. Then, create a realistic “due date” to complete each task. Add these tasks to the weekly calendar to make sure it gets completed.
At this point, they start purging and sorting to remove clutter. Start with one task (one sticky note) and complete it. They only need to be focused on one task at a time. As a result, it reduced the stress of completing the entire project all at once.
Tip to remove clutter: For tasks that are unpleasant, allocate enough time to complete it and do it first. Completing this task first helps the process because you are not thinking about what unpleasant task is coming next.
Remember: It took a long time to create this clutter, it will most likely take some time to clear it. Usually, it doesn't take as long as it did to create the clutter if you plan on working through the room on a weekly basis.
Be strong, stay positive, look at the progress you made, not the incomplete tasks. Taking before and after pictures of the tasks would give them a victory that will motivate them to do more.
And the clients' results were similar as well, they felt:
How clients felt after the removed their clutter.
- Happy with themselves and others.
- Proud of what they accomplished.
- Focused on new tasks at hand.
- Stronger in themselves.
- Peace of mind in their home.
- Secure in their space.
- An overall order and control in their life.
- They could spend more time with their loved ones.
Do you want to feel this way after you remove clutter in your home? Visit our “Organizing Solutions” section for specific areas of the home.