How To Make Decluttering Easy
Use this practical and methodical approach to help you make decisions. It will change the way you view the whole decluttering process!
Before we start a project, I always ask clients what their dream is for the space. Recently a client said:
“To be able to get more space without getting rid of anything!”
She knew she was joking as she said it and she was prepared to make decisions, but her natural inclination was clear. She has a hard time getting rid of things - which is partly why her very large kitchen was so full - and she was kind of apprehensive about what was to come. In fact, when I arrived for our first session she actually said to me, “I nearly cancelled you…I had so many second thoughts!”
Truth be told, she did quite well with decluttering. When everything was categorised and laid out in front of her, she could see how many glass bowls and trays she had, and it became much easier for her to see what was superfluous.
But towards the end of the project, we came down to some last few bits that we just could not find a proper home for.
These were items she used very rarely but didn’t want to get rid of. And we were stuck.
This was where we used some very unemotional, practical logic to help her make a decision:
1. Look around the entire room. Every cupboard has items inside that belong in that space ie, it wouldn’t make sense to move them somewhere else.
2. These cupboards are also currently set up in a way that makes items easy to access. If we squeeze anything else in it will be hard to get to things.
3. Look at the item you’re holding. It’s used twice a year. When it comes down to it, you do actually have another item you could use instead of this.
Think on this for a few seconds…
From there the client could come to her own conclusions. The options were store it somewhere else in the house or get rid of it.
And she did!
This is a super useful tool to use when you find you’re stuck on an item and aren’t sure if you should get rid of it or not:
1. Make sure that everything you DO need has a proper home that makes sense and is easy to access.
2. Now have a look at the situation. If there’s room somewhere for these leftover items, by all means, store it – just make sure it’s not getting in the way of any items you need access to. If there isn’t room for it, you either look for spare space elsewhere…or come to your own conclusions.
It doesn’t have to be emotional and gut wrenching. When you see how things stand and it comes down to a question of space, the decision is basically made for you.
Oh and in case you were wondering if our client still had second thoughts at the end, this was the message I received after we completed and she was using her kitchen again.
“I am cooking now and see how it works. Amazing, organised kitchen, it’s so much easier for me. Can’t thank you enough!”