De-clutter for good

Since I have a lot of time on my hands these days (thank you, COVID-19), I am trying to find things to fill up my days. Like many of you out there, I am spring cleaning and getting projects done around the house. One of those projects is getting rid of all the things that have been hanging around the house way too long.

I am a true Gemini so my twins usually live on opposite ends of the spectrum and are always fighting for control. I live a pretty uncluttered life and have no problem getting rid of “stuff” but the interior designer in me likes to collect things like fabric, old furniture, lighting, etc. So while my home remains pretty neat and uncluttered, my garage and office are almost always filled to capacity.

Here are my simple tips for de-cluttering:

1 – Pull everything out of the space. It is way easier to start fresh than trying to rearrange inside a cluttered space.

2 – Assess the space and see if you can install, shelves, hooks, etc, to make the storage work better.

3 – Separate your items into keepers, maybes and “got to go’s.”

4 – Put the keepers back in your space, and kick the “got to go’s” to the curb. I usually donate as much as possible rather than trash it.

Now your left with the “maybes,” and this is usually the hardest part for people. There are lots of rules out there like “if you haven’t used it in a year then toss it” and “if it doesn’t bring you joy, let it go.” But in my line of work it may take years before I use something and if I bought it, then it probably brought me joy, at least in the moment. Needless to say, those rules don’t always work for me. Here is my rule: if it took you forever to find it and it fits in the space easily then keep it, but if you have to move mountains to store it, then it needs to go.

Once your space is put back together and you’ve gotten rid of everything that was cluttering it up, how do you keep it clean and organized? I have reinstated a rule I used with my daughter from the moment we hit 75 stuffed animals in her room…..1 in, 1 out. If you bring something in, then something else has to go. This will help you stay clutter free and,, more importantly, if you are forced to think about what will have to go BEFORE you buy, then it may keep you from making unnecessary purchases in the first place.

Get all your ducks in a row now because when this quarantine is over it’s party time!

Nancy Bradley photo

Nancy bradley

I consult, design, and remodel spaces that reflect the homeowner’s lifestyle and budget by getting the cost question out of the way and really listening to what my client wants and how much they have set aside for their project.