The hardest part of decluttering is usually finding a place to start. Here are 13 things that you can get rid of today to take a step towards the uncluttered home that you deserve.
Grab a bag - or two! One for donations and one for trash.
If you’re not at home, you should probably save this article for later, because we’re doing this together. You’ve been wanting to get rid of the “junk” that’s starting to pile up, so we’re getting started - right now!
1. Let’s start with the beauty products. Nobody needs old or unused makeup or nail polish, but we tend to hold onto things “just in case” or because we don’t take the time to clean out.
Toss nail polish that were gifts but never used, hair products that have just been sitting in your cabinet, and makeup that has reached its end.
2. It can be hard to let go of clothes that don’t fit. Maybe you outgrew them or maybe they never fit to begin with. Having them in your closet not only takes up space but in some cases can also cause self-doubt and frustration.
If this one seems overwhelming and you don’t already have a few pieces that you know don’t fit, grab an empty basket/bag and set it in or near your closet. For the next few weeks, toss in any clothes that don’t fit or that you just no longer love. At the end of the month, donate them. You can take them to a local consignment store, Goodwill, or donate to Minimized Closet.
3. We took care of the clothes that don’t fit, but don’t forget about the damaged clothing that’s taking up space in your closet as well! Some things may be easy to fix, but if you know that you don’t love it enough to take that time, let it go.
4. If you’re anything like my little sister, this one may be tough for you. It’s time to get rid of those lonely socks. You keep hoping their mates will appear, but they have been stuffed in the back of the drawer alone for too long.
Keep track of those socks from now on by making sure that you put the pairs together as soon as you put laundry away. Leave no sock behind! If you do find stranglers on laundry day, choose a specific spot to leave them so you know just where to look when their match is found.
5. Technology is changing so quickly, that many of us are left with old versions or broken electronics that are no longer useful. Don’t let them collect in a junk drawer - get rid of them!
If it’s just an older version or still has usable parts, you may want to set them aside to sell. If you can commit to it, go for it! Amazon will give you trade-in credit for most electronics, and you can also send them to a few other places for quick cash.
6. While we’re on the topic of technology, let’s step over to those cords & chargers that haven’t been used in years. We’ve all done it - keeping chargers around even though we no longer have the phone or camera to go with it! And does anyone need 6 pairs of Apple headphones? Probably not.
7. If you’re like me and love a good game night, you may also have a collection of games you no longer play or that have missing parts/pieces. It’s tempting to keep them - maybe you’ll want to reminisce and play again one day, or maybe you’ll finally find that missing piece!
If you just no longer play them, donate! If you’re missing parts or pieces, trash it. Nobody wants to buy a game at the thrift store only to find pieces missing.
8. Now that we’ve gotten rid of the games you don’t play, let’s move on to the movies you don’t watch. We are now living a world where we can have access to SO MANY MOVIES without having to keep physical DVDs around the house (or VHS tapes… if you still have those.)
Some may be nostalgic. That’s fine, as long as you actually watch them! Just don’t fall into the trap of collecting all of your favorite DVDs just to have them sit on a shelf and never leave their cases.
9. Sometimes expired medications collect because we’re not sure about the best way to get rid of them. Some medications can be thrown away without worry.
10. Believe it or not, instruction manuals can now be found anywhere online. You don’t need those papers taking up space in your home! How often do you really go to look at those, anyways? Let’s toss them.
11. In order to stay decluttered, you’ve got to commit to no more unnecessary multiples. Multiples can accumulate from combining households or simply because you misplace something and accidentally buy another. Either way, there is no great reason for one home to have five measuring tapes or three coffee makers.
12. Have you ever gone to buy storage bins or baskets before planning where they would go? If you have containers that don’t serve a purpose, or a mis-matched collection that is driving you crazy, just let them go.
The idea of them is great, but they may be causing more clutter instead of containing the clutter like you intended. One of the best pieces of advice I can give is to start organizing before you buy the bins. Know what you need before you buy!
13. Now that we’re almost done, it’s time to get serious. We’re going to throw out anything that gives you bad memories. It can be tough to let go, but your happiness is worth more than that sweater or silverware!
Maybe it reminds you of a past relationship every time you put it on. It may bring you to a bad time of your life every time you open the drawer. Whatever it is, do yourself a wonderful favor, and get rid of it.
Don't you already feel so much better? Decluttering and creating an organized home takes time - it's not going to happen in one sitting. But you just took an excellent step towards making your home a happier and more relaxing place. I'm giving you a mental high five (or a hug, whichever you need more)!