There are many ways to clear the clutter from your home. The key is finding which decluttering strategies work best for you. In today’s post, I’m sharing 13 of the best ways to declutter to help you figure out which will work best for you.
Use these tips and tricks to make it easier to declutter and find the best way to declutter for you!
13 of the best ways to declutter
1. Get rid of duplicates
One of the easiest strategies to use when decluttering is by starting to look for and get rid of duplicates. Anything you have more than one of. Or items that serve a similar purpose to each other.
Keep your favourite, or favourite few, then get rid of the extras. This is a really quick way to make great progress decluttering your home!
2. Get rid of anything you haven’t used in the last year
Another quick and effective way to declutter is by getting rid of anything you haven’t used in the last year.
Aside from seasonal items, if you haven’t used something in the last year, you probably don’t truly need or love it. Get rid of the unused items and make it easier to find, use and appreciate the items you do use regularly and love!
3. Give everything a home
Another great decluttering strategy is to make sure every item you’re keeping has a specific home or place to keep it.
Clutter often comes from items without homes floating around the floors and surfaces of your house. You can prevent this by making sure every item you own has a specific home to keep it. Then get in the habit of putting things away in their home after using them.
Often, finding a home for everything requires you to do some decluttering of things you don’t use, need or love to make room for the things you do. Remember to focus less on organizing the space so you can fit more in. And instead, focus on decluttering so you can easily access and put away the items you use regularly and love.
4. Get rid of extra storage bins & furniture
Items that hold “stuff” will usually fill up with stuff, whether you need it or not!
Break the cycle by getting rid of the extra storage bins and furniture in your home. If you have fewer places to shove stuff you don’t know what to do with it forces you to make decisions and get rid of the clutter.
If you declutter the stuff that was inside a storage bin or piece of furniture, challenge yourself to get rid of the bin or piece of furniture so it can’t fill back up with more stuff.
5. Reduce flat surfaces
Another decluttering strategy that will help you ruthlessly declutter is getting rid of any extra flat surfaces in your home.
Flat surfaces seem to be magnets for clutter, easily collecting clutter and mess. One way to prevent this is by having fewer flat surfaces for clutter to collect on.
Are there any flat surfaces in your home whose primary function seems to be to collect clutter and mess? Maybe it’s a coffee table in your living room. Or a chair in the corner of your bedroom. Or a sideboard in your dining room.
While it might seem unconventional at first, challenge yourself to consider if you could live without the furniture to help reduce the number of clutter-catching spots in your home.
6. Choose your favourites first
Instead of focusing on what you’re getting rid of, focus on what you’re choosing to keep instead.
It’s often easier to let go of what’s left when you know you already chose to keep all of your favourites first.
It might not seem like a significant shift, but one of the best ways to declutter is by simply focusing on keeping your favourite items first. Then letting go of anything that doesn’t make the cut as a favourite.
7. Use the “one in, one out” rule
Another great strategy to use as you’re decluttering is the “one in, one out” rule.
Every time you bring something new into your home, find one item to let go of in its place. Or even better, find two or three items to let go of!
This is a great way to make progress as you’re decluttering. And also prevent clutter from accumulating again in the future.
8. Use space limits as boundaries
Space limits are a really great tool to use as you’re decluttering.
Take the decision about how many items to keep out of your hands and let the space available make the decision for you.
Assess how much can comfortably fit in any given space. Then use that to guide your decluttering decisions and decide how ruthless you need to be while you’re decluttering.
For example, if you decide you can comfortably accommodate 10 dresses in that section of your closet, that becomes your limit. Then you can choose your favourite 10 dresses and let go of the rest.
This same concept can apply to so many categories of stuff. From books, to mugs, to makeup and more. A space limit can be an effective strategy to use when decluttering almost any category of stuff.
9. Start with the easiest stuff
Sometimes the hardest part of decluttering is starting. Often, once you get started, your momentum builds and it’s easier to keep going.
Make it really easy to get started by starting with the easiest decluttering decisions.
First, look for any garbage that you can easily get rid of. Things like socks with holes, wrappers, pens that don’t work, old newspapers, single earrings, etc. Look for anything that’s broken and beyond repair or not worth the time/money to fix. As well as anything that’s worn out beyond repair like clothes, towels, toys, etc.
Starting with this easy stuff is a great way to build momentum, get started and make a difference in your spaces too!
10. Try the “20/20 rule”
The 20/20 rule comes from The Minimalists. It says if you can replace something for less than $20 and in less than 20 minutes, don’t keep it “just in case” or out of fear that you might regret your decision.
If it’s not something you use regularly or love, you likely won’t miss it at all. But on the off chance you do, it’s easy to replace without much difficulty.
This is a great rule to use when you’re struggling to let go of items you might need one day or are tempted to keep just in case.
11. Check expiry dates
Getting rid of anything expired is another great way to make easy decluttering decisions and build your momentum to keep going.
The first thing that comes to mind is likely expired food, which is a great place to start.
But you can also declutter expired personal care products like makeup, nail polish, sunscreen, medications, etc. as well.
12. Set deadlines
Sometimes you make decluttering decisions, but don’t follow through and get the stuff out of your house. So it sits continuing to cause clutter, or worse, gets spread back out into the house again.
When you’re decluttering, schedule times to drop off donations. And give yourself deadlines to list and sell items you’re planning to sell. Also, give yourself deadlines to donate any unsold items so they don’t hang around too long after being listed for sale.
Remember that you’re not done decluttering until the stuff is completely out of your house. Don’t let donation or “to sell” piles hang around indefinitely continuing to cause clutter in your home!
13. Slow down what’s coming in
And finally, one really important decluttering strategy isn’t about decluttering, but about what’s coming into your home instead.
While you’re focusing on decluttering, be really mindful about what you’re bringing into your home as well. Try to stop or slow down how much new stuff is coming in so you can support your decluttering efforts more.
Best ways to declutter
These are some of the best ways to declutter. Giving you tools and strategies to use to declutter efficiently and effectively. Especially as you’re starting and building momentum to keep going.
I’d love to know, which of these decluttering strategies are you going to try? Leave a comment below and let me know!