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Feeling a bit dizzy? It might be the mess around you!
Science has proven that clutter leads to high levels of stress, which might hinder us from living each day to the fullest. It can lessen productivity and contribute to fatigue, so why isn’t everyone de-cluttering already?
Aside from it being time-consuming, many people also don’t know how clutter can have severe effects on their lives. People might not also know how to declutter in an effective manner and what areas of their lives they need to declutter. After all, it’s not only your desk you’ll need to pay attention to, but your whole house, belongings, and activities, as well.
Read on below to learn how to declutter your life by de-cluttering your home and even your schedule.
Areas to Focus on to Declutter Your Life
Of course, we’re going to start with physical clutter you can find on your office desk, in your car, and in your home. Then, we’ll move on to de-cluttering the activities and factors that affect your life, such as social media, your schedule, and such.
1. Start with One Room at a Time
First, let’s start with surfaces. These surfaces include your office desk, your countertops, your TV stand, and such.
It’s good to have decorations there and some important stuff. As you go, though, ask yourself if an item needs to be there or you can stash it away from view.
Then, start with the living room, where you entertain guests. Your bedroom is also a good place to start as it should be a place of relaxation. Don’t forget your garage, where we tend to dump the things we don’t need anymore but we can’t dispose of.
The good thing about it is that you don’t need to finish de-cluttering your whole house in one day. You can keep it from stressing you out by tackling one problem at a time.
To start de-cluttering, look at each of your items the room – from the books to the chairs. See which ones you can get rid of and which ones you must keep.
This can be a bit hard if you’re a bit sentimental; one tip is to keep only the bare minimum and add the rest later. You’ll likely love the look of a de-cluttered room too much to add anything unnecessary later on.
If you’re unsure yet of what to do with your other things, store them in a storage unit. This will give you time to think about how to give them out or dispose of them in the proper way. Search for “storage units near me” on Google for starters.
2. Don’t Forget Your Closets and Drawers
Take a look at your closets and drawers and see if there are clothes and other items you can dispose of. Most often than not, there 1 or 2 pieces of clothing that we don’t use anymore but like keeping it there for “future use.” Most of the time, though, we don’t get to wear it again as the need never arises.
Ask yourself if you’ve worn or used the item in the past year or so. If not, you’re not likely to wear it again; it’s better off donated or disposed of if it’s in a bad condition already.
3. Clean up Your Gadgets Too
Digital clutter has the same effect as physical clutter. You may need to look at your gadgets to see what you can get rid of. Do you feel stressed out with your home screen and the abundance of apps? You may consider using folders to group similar apps and only keep the ones you always use on your home screen.
You should also check if you’re using each app and if you have any reason to keep it. You’ll most likely have 1 or 2 that you or the developer has already forgotten about.
If you’re always receiving notifications you don’t care about, try disabling them. A plus is that it increases productivity as you won’t hear a “ping” from your phone every few minutes.
Clean up your pictures, too, by deleting random pictures, duplicates, and screenshots. Check each folder also for files you might not need anymore. If you’re running low on space, consider transferring them to a cloud service.
Then, move on to your social media accounts and ask yourself if they’re making you happy. According to studies, social media is harmful to mental health as it promotes comparing lives. If you have this habit, delete the apps (except the ones that let you connect to your friends and loved ones, like Messenger) and see how their absence let you breathe.
4. Develop a Sorting System
One of the keys to de-cluttering is making sure that everything in your life has a place. Your keys should have a designated place in your home, your documents should be together at a specific drawer, your blankets should be with your other beddings in a closet, and so on.
This will keep these things out of sight and prevent them from cluttering your home. If you don’t have enough storage for all these, buy new drawers or compartment boxes.
In your car, make sure your car documents are in the car at all times. Decide where to put them – in the glove compartment or in a folder kept in the trunk?
If you have kids or pets, consider getting extra storage in which you can keep toys and ride essentials, like first aid kits, travel wipes, diapers, and such. Place a bin to keep the trash as minimal as possible, too.
5. Free up Your Schedule
Your calendar is another area you can declutter. If you find yourself not having any downtime, see what you can cut off from your schedule. Do you need to work 3 hours more every day and do you need to go to that party on your only day off?
Many people can’t say “no” due to shyness, but they don’t know they’re only adding clutter to their lives. Note that every time you say “yes” to something you don’t like, you’re saying “no” to yourself. Prioritize your mental and physical health above all else and make sure to have some me-time.
The Keyword to De-cluttering Is “Let Go”
You might have noticed a pattern in our tips to declutter your life and your home. The key is to let go of the unnecessary things in your life, especially if you don’t have a use for them at all. It’s okay to save sentimental items, but make sure they don’t you cause stress instead.
While you’re at it, learn some deep cleaning tricks to keep your de-cluttered home clean. We also have a wide variety of other topics covered so don’t hesitate to explore our other guides!