Have you ever stopped for a second and taken a look around your house and noticed it started to become cluttered with knickknacks, clothes, and other items that seemed to be a little overbearing? Do you want to know the benefits of decluttering?
If so, keep reading below for tips on how to start decluttering, the benefits of decluttering, and why decluttering can also help boost your mood.
First things first… definitions
According to the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary, clutter is defined as:
1a: a crowded or confused mass or collection
b: a clutter of motels and restaurants
c: things that clutter a place
tried to minimize the unnecessary clutter in her house
2: interfering radar echoes caused by reflection from objects (as on the ground) other than the target
Declutter defined according to the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary is: to remove clutter from a room, an area, etc.
Got more time? Declutter your closets.
— Nicole Beland, Cosmopolitan, November 1999
March 6 is Organize Your Home Office Day—so don’t forget to declutter while you’re spring cleaning.
— This Old House, March 2012
It’s very easy for areas to become cluttered with time. As the years go on many of us find ourselves buying more and more things, even if we don’t really need them. There is absolutely nothing wrong with collecting items.
The only time it may become a hassle is if you find yourself:
- Frazzled when entering a cluttered area
- Unable to find anything you’re looking for
- Unable to find a place for new things bought or received
- Dreading cleaning up due to the amount calculated over time
Did you know nonphysical areas can become cluttered as well?
These areas include phones, computers, cameras, and even the mind can become cluttered! Towns can become cluttered with too many businesses, residents, and garbage. Too much of anything can leave places, phones, and minds feeling and looking a bit hectic.
Now that we went over what cluttering is, how it can happen, and areas, both physical and non-physical, can pile up let’s look at some of the benefits of decluttering these areas in our lives.
These benefits include:
- Clearer thinking
- A feeling of accomplishment once done
- A calming sense with the chaotic clutter gone or maintained
- Free space for future items
- The opportunity to donate unneeded items to people in need
- If you have a TON of things, you can easily start a side hustle selling items on eBay, Facebook marketplace, or another selling app
- With technology, freeing up space can help your electronics perform much better than prior, especially if your tech was running slow
- Distractions become less, helping you achieve more productivity in your life
- And many many more… though you have to find out these amazing benefits by trying decluttering for yourself 😉
As you can see there are many great things that come along with decluttering.
Challenges and Motivation
It’s not always easy to start, or even know where to begin. If you’re like me and not the one bringing home more and more it can bring a bit of a challenge into the home.
What I mean by this is my husband is a magnet. People randomly give him things as a thank you for him helping them. He has a huge heart and rarely asks for anything in return. He helps others because it’s who he is. We had 6 storage units full of random items at one point.
Weeding down the clutter was not an easy task. So, I am letting you in on my own motivational techniques to help with starting and completing your decluttering task.
The most difficult task in starting anything dealing with things we typically do not enjoy doing is finding the motivation to do whatever it may be. Decluttering is a daunting task for many and reasonably so. Some things you can become attached to, finding time, and figuring out what to do with all the collected items can be a bit intimidating.
What I like to do in these situations is to first pump myself up. I do this by watching inspirational videos, reading uplifting blogs, looking at before and after pictures, etc… anything to do with getting my mind ready for the upcoming task of letting go of clutter. If you’ve made it this far into the post congratulations on doing the first step 🙂
Planning and Checklists
The next step is probably my favorite. Writing out a plan and making mini-goal checklists. I love, love, love to write lists and plans. I do this every time I have a major project. Here’s how I personally do this:
- Go room by room and take a mental note of how each room makes me feel (when I have too much clutter my brain gets overwhelmed)
- Look to see which room has the most clutter and write down in order the least to most
- I then make mini goals for each room (for example writing down on a piece of paper with a checkbox: go through the cabinets and fridge to get rid of any old, expired food or go through the large stack of papers in my office area… ) I section each room and what I need to do. Having a written checklist helps keep all the frazzled energy down.
You can narrow down the days you would like to have each room completed. Make it fun and come up with small little rewards to make it more intriguing.
- Decide if you are going to donate, sell, or throw away items no longer needed or take up space.
- I personally start with the most problematic room and work my way down. I found by doing the harder rooms first while I am pumped, the smaller rooms are a breeze by the time I want to throw my hands up.
- Check to see if I need to delete any old apps, photos, videos, etc on my phone, computer, camera, etc while I am relaxing watching my favorite TV series (Helllllloooo Riverdale)
- After I am done, I sit back and bask in the sense of productivity, accomplishment, and the feeling of a clean uncluttered home and electronics…. It feels wonderful.
While you can’t do too much with decluttering a town you can help by picking up any trash you see on the ground, starting a side business in lawn care, graffiti cleaning service (I am a major art fan and love beautiful graffiti, the graffiti I am talking about is the unpleasant eyesores where people did not practice the art of true graffiti, just tagging things to tag them isn’t cool, especially when it’s rude or offensive.)
You could start a remodeling business and help lower-end cities reclaim their former glory. Or offer a window washing service, a clean window can go a long way. Maybe you have an eye for design and could start a window display design service. There are many many options you can choose from to help contribute to making a town look nice again.
Mentally wise if you feel often overwhelmed here are some areas you can look into to see if anything needs to be changed to help you:
- Think about the music you listen to. Is it angry? Sad? Disrespectful? Many may disagree, but music can influence the human mind.
If you are listening to most music that can potentially bring you down into a funk it’s understandable how it can relate to how you feel on a subconscious level.
Next time you feel off just ask yourself have I been over listening to potentially upsetting music? Remember there is always a healthy balance to everything.
- Just as with music, think about the tv you are consuming. Is it violent? Depressive? Discouraging? It may not seem like these things matter, but subconsciously they do.
- Look at the people around you. Sometimes, unfortunately, mental stress can be the cause of draining friends, family members, coworkers, etc… try to do your best at keeping a distance from them until you can get out of the mental fog. Come up with personal boundaries and apply them to your life.
Just take a moment to fully evaluate yourself, what you do, the people you hang around, the things you watch etc. Then take the appropriate actions to help get you feeling better and out of the overwhelming mental clutter. It’s not an easy task, but you can do it.
As you can see, the benefit of decluttering has many great positive outlooks in many different areas of life. Don’t just take my word for it… try it out and see for yourself 🙂