Ever notice how everyone agrees without hesitation that decluttering is a good thing? That they should really get going with it? Yet why do so many of us hesitate and leave it at that?
Honestly, it’s the overwhelming feeling that holds us back! It descends upon us as we visualize our home and all the areas that could use a good space clearing. We might start in one room and pick up an item that belongs in another. But when we take it there, we get sidetracked in that room…until the same thing happens again in a third room!
So what’s the best approach? Begin with a plan that focuses on small spaces which impact your daily routine. This will provide immediate gratification to keep you going! Check out these five suggestions.
1. Handbag or Tote
Start with your workhorse: the survival bag which contains the things you [think you] need on a daily basis. Is it possible that the bigger the bag, the more extras you lug around? Fashion rules waffle between oversized Neverfull totes and compact Gucci clutches. Regardless, taking 10 minutes to sort through the contents makes sense. I mean, who doesn’t accumulate crumpled tissues, loose change, stray mints and other miscellaneous passengers that need to exit?
So go ahead and file (or shred if not needed) those receipts. Toss the scraps of paper. Remove the old makeup products. When you do this on a weekly basis, like on a Sunday night, you’ll be ready for the start of the week, Monday morning! In fact, you may conclude you don’t even need to carry such a large handbag. Or, you might revel in using the same but albeit much lighter bag…you choose!
2. Makeup and Toiletries
Isn’t it amazing how cosmetics seem to multiply like rabbits in the bathroom drawers? These small spaces quickly get overfilled. We accumulate free samples. We try different colors. Or we snag the latest celebrity endorsed makeup. Before you know it, you have more products than you will ever use!
But what if you set into a box or a specified drawer only the items you currently used in the last week or two? It might surprise you to see how many remain behind that you just don’t touch. Most products have a limited shelf life. Whatever you don’t plan to keep, consider donating unopened items to a local women’s shelter. Everyone deserves a chance to look their best, don’t you think?
3. Kitchen Counter
Why is the kitchen counter such a magnet for stuff unrelated to cooking? You walk in the door and automatically deposit things there! The mail, your keys, receipts, sunglasses…any number of miscellaneous items land there. Unfortunately, many never leave and then there’s barely any work surface for meal prep.
My suggestion is to start designating specific homes for the things you use and carry back in every day. Have a decorative bowl where your keys go. Take 5 minutes to sort through the mail and do this right over the trash can so you can immediately toss the junk mailers. Anything that needs action, set in a designated folder for review later. Consider a specified day/time to handle that paperwork. Creating a 10 minute daily routine to put things where they belong when you get home means you can actually get cooking when it’s meal time!
Here are more small spaces which become catchall surfaces in a room meant for rest and relaxation! If you think about it, the only things that really belong here should be supportive for a good night’s sleep or a romantic interlude. Yet most folks tend to deposit their phone or electronic device next to the bed. It’s the first thing they reach for when they wake up. It’s not a healthy practice and you might be surprised how it actually interferes with your mood and mindset.
Take five now and get going with removing all the odds and ends that have landed on your night stand. Imagine how refreshing it will be to see a calming vignette of what matters when you wake up in the morning. You’ll never want to turn out the light on a cluttered nightstand again!
Lastly, think about how often this appliance gets opened and what may have overstayed its welcome inside. Generally, the doors are chock full of condiments rarely if ever used. Fruits and veggies have the shortest lifespan of your fridge contents so turnover is critical in the produce drawers.
Taking time to clear out and wipe down the surfaces is a smart way to take inventory before heading on your next grocery run. And it never hurts to pitch the items of temptation if you’re embarking on a clean eating regimen, does it!
These are but a few of many small spaces you can dig into when starting your space clearing mission. Other possible places are your linen closet, your pantry, your cleaning supplies, your book shelves or even your jewelry box!
Take a stroll around your home and make note of small decluttering zones that you could conquer in less than an hour. Then when you’re ready to kick on some small spaces, check your list and get going. To avoid getting distracted, have a bag or a bin to deposit items that belong elsewhere. Put those items away where they belong at the end of your session. Afterwards, enjoy the sense of accomplishment…you’ve earned it! Let’s connect to start tackling your space, one small section at a time!