Decluttering is a fabulous thing. It gets rid of excess stuff that we simply don’t need. Decluttering saves us money by revealing what we already and also reminding us what we actually do not need! It also has the potential to make us money too, through selling the excess, or simply being charitable and giving it to someone who is more in need.
Decluttering helps simplify your life through cutting down on the unnecessary, saving us time on cleaning, organising and the dreaded searching when you can’t find something you need. However when you start, it’s not unusual to feel completely overwhelmed by decluttering.
HOW TO AVOID FEELING OVERWHELMED BY DECLUTTERING
When you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed at the prospect of downsizing, this usually comes down to not knowing where to start. When you have a whole house to declutter, knowing which room to begin with, or which part of that particular room can be really confusing.
It’s because of this that so many of us avoid getting started at all, or get part way through and lose momentum. After all, it can also be pretty darn exhausting!
Here are some great ways to help you avoid feeling overwhelmed by decluttering:
Work out what you what to achieve with your decluttering. Do you perhaps have an area of your home that is overflowing with stuff? Is your tupperware cupboard contents falling on your feet every time you open the door? Are you going for a minimalist look home? Once you know what your goals are, it gives you a better idea on what you want to achieve, whether it be a full home declutter, or a small space declutter and exactly how much you want to get rid of.
Begin with small goals and tasks. This is far less overwhelming than if you just dive in with an expectation of getting the whole house transformed in a day! You’re not Wonder Woman!
Enlist In Some Help
There is absolutely no reason why you should be going at the declutter alone. If you live with others, put them to work as well. A joint declutter can save so much time and take the pressure of your shoulders alone. And besides, chances are you weren’t the only one responsible for accumulating all that stuff.
If you have kids, don’t forget to give them tasks too. Kids love to be helpful, usually. And it may be a great way for them to earn some extra pocket money!
You do not need to have this whole job done in a single day, or even in a single month, if that does not fit into your schedule. Set up your plan to tackle it in a gradual way that suits your lifestyle and time. By breaking it down into smaller decluttering tasks will make a difference. Maybe set aside a day a week when you commit to your declutter plans, or even just one hour a day, every day until it is done. It all adds up in the long run and if that helps you feel less overwhelmed, it’s okay that it might take longer. So long as you’re still working at your goal, and not giving up, then you are making great progress. Well done!
One thing that I did to get started but without putting lots of pressure on myself was a one box declutter process, as it was a small act done often that started to add up, before I was ready to tackle the bigger tasks.
Join a Challenge
Having set tasks and instructions can take so much pressure out of the decluttering process and certainly help you to avoid that sense of overwhelm and anxiety. There are so many challenges you can join online, but of course I will give a shameless plug and recommend my own previous blog challenge – Simplify My Life, which has a monthly declutter task featuring a different area of the home, complete with tips to help you declutter that space and a checklist to make it nice and easy. You can print all the checklists off and work through them at your own pace.
Take a Break
And if still after trying these things to help you with your declutter you still feel overwhelmed, just take a break. Not a forever break. A couple of days should be time to recharge your batteries and help you get back on track. Sometimes we have too much else going on in our lives and we need to take a step back and let something slide for a little while. That’s okay. We all deserve a break!
Change Your Habits
Once you get started on minimising the amount of stuff you have in your home and in your life, the last thing you want to do is start bringing more unnecessary things into it. This is where changing your habits can really help avoid you ending up in the same situation in a year or two. Consider carefully before you make new purchases. Do you really need it?
In our household the worse culprit these days is the kids toys so I do regularly go through and clear out the toys they have outgrown and have a general declutter and toy organisation. We also no longer buy them lots of things for birthdays and Christmas.
We know the rest of the family is going to spoil them too so we keep it simple with what we give them, instead focusing on one thing they would really love and maybe some practical things to go with it, like a new pair of swimmers for next summer. This has helped reduce the mess that comes with kids.
Hopefully with these decluttering tips, you are one step closer to achieving your goals, minus the feeling over it being all too much. And don’t forget once you declutter that stuff, you need to get rid of it or it sort of defeats the purpose, so sell it, donate it, throw it in the bin – what ever happens to suit you and the stuff you are decluttering. Trust me, it feels good to rid yourself of all the unnecessary stuff.
Be sure to check out my other decluttering tips to help you along! Good luck!
Do you have any tips to avoid feeling overwhelmed by decluttering?