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blog about streamlining life.

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  • Writer's pictureLeigh Anne

5 steps to decluttering

Easy method for keeping what you love and discarding what you don't.

"If there is no struggle, there is no progress."

- Frederick Douglass

Starting is the hardest part of any life change and the same holds true for organizing and decluttering. You can see it at the start of every new year and when Springtime rolls around. People start to clean out in preparation for a new season.. a new place in life. The good news is that you don't have to wait until January or April to get organized!

I'ts important to note that for some people it's truly satisfying work (in all fairness, I'm one of those people who LOVES cleaning out and getting rid of things) and others find it exhausting. Factor this into your planning- you may want to start with a small area first.. especially if the thought of cleaning out gives you hives! And remember, keep only what is essential, beautiful or meaningful.

1. Start in the easiest place

Pick a spot in your home or office that's the least overwhelming to you. Bathroom or supply cabinets tend to be a great starting point- you either use the items or you don't.

2. Have a plan

Make a list of the areas you want to tackle and set aside some time each week to work on them. You'll see progress but you can avoid feeling submerged in clutter.

3. Set up your stations

I always make a mess before it gets better, so I highly recommend designating a "transition area" where you can put anything that is to be sold, donated or trashed as you work.  Utilizing this method helps keep the room you're working on clear and helps you stay focused. Also grab trash bags or containers to use as your sort for each of the stations (donate/sell, trash, keep).

4. Get started

Now the you have a plan.. go for it! If you find you're stuck on something, ask yourself these questions.

- Do I NEED this? (Essential)

- Have I used it in the last year?

- Do I LOVE it? (Beautiful) 

- Does it remind of good or bad memories (Meaningful. Hint: throw out anything that brings back bad memories!)

This chart from HipVan is also a great visual tool to keep you on track. 

5. Keep going

Now that you've tackled one area. Keep going! As you continue, you'll start to make quicker decisions on what to keep and feel like you're living a more simplified version of your life. Remember, the clutter didn't happen overnight so it won't go away instantly.

Rooting for you!

Leigh Anne



Flow Chart by HipVan



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